I've been thinking a good bit about this new service Todd's providing links to in the right margin.
We've all had a lot of ideas and complaints about the way various lotteries are run.
Seems to me the seed's now planted to give lottery players an entirely new place in the machinery that decides how lotteries are configured, how they're managed, how they pay off, and just about everything else that's open for debate about what 'should' be done in the world of lottery gambling.
If this group is successful in making a substantial profit for their efforts to provide lottery players opportunities to play a wide range of lotteries, competition will enter the market place. Players will vote with their pocketbooks over what they consider most favorable and advantageous to themselves. If it's successful and honest a lot of players will forsake their home lotteries, Powerball and Mega Millions, and go where the odds are best, where the payoffs are highest, where the handling of the funds best suits their own needs.
This should force some badly needed changes in the losers within the lottery world, the big multis with their inflated prize ads, annuities, even RNG/ball decisions on the part of lottery officials.
But the other side of the issue is the fact that if the site Todd's provided makes a hefty return for their project, competition will be inevitable there, also. Other sites will spring up trying to offer a still wider range of alternatives, better prices, better security.
To me, this all seems healthy. A breath of fresh air in a room where it had become suffocating.
I'm planning to take my chances with Euro Millions. Powerball will never feel the loss, but if a lot of others begin to do the same, a player might eventually begin to see billboards the reflect the actual amount of the lump sum prize they're awarding to a winner of the next draw.
Sagan commented on his blog recently that good does win out over evil. That truth triumphs over falsehood. That virtue triumphs over something or other of the opposite ilk.
I generally don't believe what he says is true. But I do believe it happens occasionally, and I think this might be one of those laudable instances.