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The Online Gambling Industry

Introducing a series chronicling the rapid rise of a 75 billion dollar industry.

Ian Sherrington has been working in online gambling since its inception — the early 1990s. In just 30 years, it has gone from basements to board rooms, rapidly evolving with no end in sight. Now, his series of 40+ articles will detail every step of online gambling’s rise, with insights from the people who made it happen.

Countless innovations have catapulted the industry. From the moment Sherrington and his team received the very first online sports bet, various services and casinos have developed to form a complex network that together build a modern-day online gambling website.

Each month, investigations and interviews will culminate into a new article that details how a certain innovation impacted operators and their customers. You’ll hear firsthand accounts from the people behind these advancements.

The Online Gambling Industry

A series of articles

“From bare bones to an industry worth $75 billion in 30 years.
Now is the time to share who started it all,
what inspired them and how they did it.”

Brought to you with the assistance of

First Article is out now!


The series will begin with an overview of the online gambling industry today. It will briefly chart the rise of remote gambling (i.e. the Federal Wire Act, agents and runners), the stock market, and telecommunication methods (i.e. the telegraph and telephone). This first article will map the development of the internet and consequently the first online bet, casino games, lotteries, and sportsbooks.

And so, the scene is set. Through research, interviews and social media, the series will then detail the development of each industry segment and the stories of those behind each innovation. Each article will chronicle one specific industry, such as:

First Online Wager

Is it possible to track down the very first wager placed online?

First Payment Provider

Which company first processed an online payment transaction for the gambling industry?

First Online Casino

Most believe The Gaming Club was first by using Microsoft software — but was it?

First Sportsbook

Who, where and when was the first sports bet placed? (Pretty sure I know the answer to this one)

First Jurisdiction

Which enlightened country or entity specifically licensed online gambling first?

First Hosting

Machine rooms filled with racks of servers specifically to serve online gambling services.. Who was the first?

First Industry Conference

Who had the great idea of organizing the first industry specific conference?

First Industry Business Magazine

Which was the first industry specific business magazine and who was behind it?

First Online Poker

Poker was hard. Who brought the first online poker service online?


The series aims to provide a factual and, where appropriate, a technical background of the online industry. At the same time, rich stories and character backgrounds will detail the trials and tribulations of major players.

Each article will weave together engaging narratives that bring an element of the online gambling industry to life.

While personal experience gives valuable insight, the articles will strive to maintain objectivity and will acknowledge both successes and challenges from the various viewpoints.

Interviews and testimonials

Research will be carried out extensively to authenticate the originators of each online gambling innovation. Team members will use industry contacts and social media platforms where appropriate.

The industry pioneers will be approached for in-person interviews and their stories will be the basis for the articles. Following the paths that led to the pioneer’s innovation, their personal stories, technical feats and of course the controversies that accompanied their journey will be uncovered.

Where possible, facts, figures, dates and times will be corroborated by an extended interview process with other contributors.


The series will publish one article each month, adhering to a schedule which is:

June 1, 2024


July 1, 2024

Introduction Article

Introduction to the series
Overview of the Industry as it is now
Potted history of gambling
Remote Gambling and technology
The Internet
Why gamble?

August 1, 2024

1. The Online Gambling Industry – The First Wager

How can we define a wager and would define an internet wager?
Who was responsible that?

September 1, 2024

2. The First Jurisdiction

Which country or territory can claim to have offered the first online gambling friendly jurisdiction?
We discuss the elements that would qualify the jurisdiction.

And many more

I’ll add to this list as the priorities become clear


The series aims to work with industry magazines for syndication. LinkedIn and other marketing will hopefully ensure a good readership for the hosts and some click-through for partner links.

Article content may be sponsored by partnerships with relevant brands or companies in the online gambling space that wish to promote their products or services. I’ll make it clear when this is the case.

If you are interested in sponsoring an article, then please get in touch here:

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The Team

Ian Sherrington: Programmer and new Author

Ian is the creator of a fundamental part of the online gaming industry: the Online Sportsbook in January 1996.

By working in the industry since its inception, Ian is in a prime position to chart its progress and, as a sociable fellow, knows many of the industry’s founders personally.

Paul Cullen: Editor and Contributor

Paul is a writer and industry professional with 20+ years of marketing and creative writing experience behind him.