Geldspielgesetz

It looks like the “Geldspielgesetz” is going through. I’m quite unhappy about this, as I don’t like internet censorship and I used to play on PokerStars a lot earlier in my life which will now become illegal.
What are your thoughts?

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Didn’t know about this initiative. Just saw the video. So basically they want to block access to foreign websites for Swiss IP addresses (hello China?), because Swiss people take their money to these websites and then the Swiss state does not profit from the taxes?

That’s seems like a sound logic. But I wonder why they don’t do the same for Facebook, Google, etc (that’s a rhetorical question)? These companies also operate from abroad and make huge money with Swiss users, but don’t pay taxes here in Switzerland.

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If there was a Swiss Facebook equivalent, paying a lot of taxes here - maybe they would try to pull of the same move :wink: (Probably not because it wouldn’t do well)

Oh no, I really hoped it would not go through, it kind of lays the foundation for more internet censorship laws. And it is really worrying by how much it was accepted.

The whole gambling part is pretty much irrelevant to me, I think it is a bad idea but you should totally be allowed to if you want to (and be given help if you are addicted). Some of the arguments I heard were about the foreign sites not honoring the Swiss “gambler protection” laws (not really sure how to translate that).

I am not worried about my internet being censored as the proposed solutions are trivial to circumvent (DNS based blocking) but I just do not like this out of principle.

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The really determined ones will be using VPN. They will be breaking the law, but it will be practically untraceable. Those who don’t like to break the law, will however be discouraged. The casino lobby tricked people effectively.

I guess if they truly wanted to make it difficult to use these foreign services, they should ban their bank accounts and transfers between Switzerland and these accounts.

May not even be nesecary. DNS Blocking will be even easier to circumvent but is also the easiest to implement(and it was still quite effective in Turkey and Egypt), so small ISPs might just go that rout. Swisscom and co will probably go the full blown firewall route.

I am not actually sure this is true but I might have misread the law. The way I read Art. 91 neither the user not the ISPs are liable (as long as they tried).

I think the bigger problem is that the ISPs are incentivized to try hard to block it is because the law says the will be reimbursed for any related expenses (Art. 92).

At least Art. 89 abs 2 might run into some problem because of HSTS.

But I am in no way a lawyer so idk, this is probably the first time I actually read a law.

I think it’s kinda irrelevant what method of blocking they use.

It certainly makes Tournaments like the Sunday Million less interesting to me personally. If you were to win >100k$ you will have an unpleasant time filling out your tax declaration and other things. It was always a grey-area and it probably still is (meaning not illegal), but as a former PokerStars player I’m now less likely to play there at all.

and how does it work if you win 100k in Monaco? I guess you can still declare it normally? Then what if you win 100k online, while being in Monaco? Then what if you connect to the poker server over VPN in Monaco?

In general, money earned while working abroad is not taxable in Switzerland.

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