Gambling is the wagering of money or something of material value (referred to as "the stakes") on an event with an uncertain outcome with the primary intent
of winning additional money and/or material goods.
Typically, the outcome of the wager is evident within a short period.
The term gaming in this context typically refers to instances in which the activity has been specifically permitted by law.
The two words are not mutually exclusive; i.e., a “gaming” company offers (legal) “gambling” activities to the public and may be regulated by one of many
gaming control boards, for example, the Nevada Gaming Control Board.
However, this distinction is not universally observed in the English-speaking world.
For instance, in the UK, the regulator of gambling activities is called the Gambling Commission (not the Gaming Commission).
Also, the word gaming is frequently used to describe activities that do not involve wagering, especially online.
Gambling is also a major international commercial activity, with the legal gambling market totaling an estimated $335 billion in 2009.
In other forms, gambling can be conducted with materials which have a value, but aren't real money; for example, games like Pogs or Magic: The Gathering.
Under US federal law, gambling is legal in the United States, and states are free to regulate or prohibit the practice.
Gambling has been legal in Nevada since 1931, forming the backbone of the state's economy, and the city of Las Vegas is perhaps the best known
gambling destination in the world.
In 1976, gambling was legalized in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and in 1990, it was legalized in Tunica,
Mississippi; both of those cities have developed extensive casino and resort areas since then.
Since a favorable U.S. Supreme Court decision in 1987, many Native American tribes have built their own casinos on tribal lands as a way to provide
revenue for the tribe.
Because the tribes are considered sovereign nations, they are often exempt from state laws restricting gambling, and are instead regulated under federal law.
Additionally, almost all states have legalized gambling in the form of a state-run
lottery and most states allow for limited non-profit organizations to host Bingo nights.
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