An ancient gambling tradition has found its way into the app store. Known colloquially as a 'gentleman's bet,' this wager is made for pride, not money, and is sealed with a handshake. Available to gentlemen and ladies alike on both Android and iOS devices, SideBets gives sports enthusiasts a platform to make bets among friends — for fake money.
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Pro bettors make their money on bets that sportsbooks offer that give them even the slightest betting advantage. The key to becoming a profitable sports bettor is being able to find advantages, opportunities where the line a book is offering is vulnerable.
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For example, you place a bet on the Giants at the casino sports book and pay $110. If the Giants win you collect $210 when you cash your winning ticket. If you lose your bet you lose the $110. Ideally, the Sportsbook would like to have the same amount of money wagered on the two teams playing. This is why most people aren’t even remotely successful with betting. They see sports betting as easy money and aren’t willing to put in the hard work. Gambling is a very emotive process. The highs and lows when you win money are some of the most compelling motivators around.
After signing up with either an email address or Facebook login, SideBets starts you off with $100 in fake cash. A user can then place bets against friends or the house. The app is free to download, as is registering for an account.
Jon Goldstein, managing partner of Blue Ox Entertainment, helped develop SideBets, which he sums up as a community “of fun, engaged degenerate gamblers” who like “being able to gamble in a way that isn’t detrimental to your pocket and detrimental to your legal standing in the community.” Online casino free slots.
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Basically, it a lighthearted way to compete against friends without the intense time commitment involved with joining a fantasy sports league.
“SideBets really kind of cuts to the essence of what I want to do, which is to interact with my friends and have competition surrounding football and other sports,” Goldstein tells Mashable. “If I win, I have props against those friends. I beat them. I got it right.”
Available in beta version since September 2011, Blue Ox Entertainment recently ramped up the social aspect by adding the ability to sign in and find friends via Facebook. After winning a bet, the app allows users to brag about it over Twitter and Facebook. Goldstein says he believes this 'social betworking' integration is what sets SideBets apart.
“There’s no other app out there that allows friends to track their betting,” he says.
For those sports-betting savants who manage to turn their fake funds into a farcical fortune, the app contains a leader board where all users are ranked against one another. Having been downloaded more than 15,000 times, there is plenty of competition for that top spot on SideBets. If things go south, however, you can purchase more play money, for example, $100 fake dollars for $0.99 in real money.
The app allows for betting options, such as using a point spread or betting on an over/under. For large events like the Super Bowl, SideBets offers a number of propositional bets. So in the unlikely event that the Jets make the Super Bowl, you may in fact be able to bet on how many times Tim Tebow says the word 'excited' during his press conference.
With the social feature of the app in place, Goldstein and company are constantly planning future updates to the app. With a careful eye on gambling laws, Blue Ox is hoping to incentivize SideBets with various sweepstakes and prize opportunities.
While fancy prizes sound enticing, anyone who has placed a gentleman's bet knows that the satisfaction and smug smile of victory is often reward enough.
Image courtesy of iStockphoto, pearleye
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- Money Management and a “Good Defense”
Most of us focus on betting systems and strategies that will be profitable. After all, without a good betting system, we won’t make any money, right? The same thing can be said about “money management.” That is, if you don’t pay attention to money management, you might not be able to take that “next” step to becoming a “sports investor.” Good money management will reduce the chances of extreme losses and help turn this “hobby” into a legitimate “investment.”
In the world of finance, many professionals use the phrase “risk management” and “money management” interchangeably. What are we trying to do when we focus on “money management?” In simple words, we’re trying to “manage our money” – or “manage our risk.” Our goal is to preserve our capital or hard-earned money. We want to minimize the chances for loss – or in a larger sense, minimize our “risk of ruin.”
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The information on this site is for entertainment and educational purposes only. Use of this information in violation of any federal, state, or local laws is prohibited.
First things, first… We believe that “flat” betting is the way to go. That is, bet the same amount for each play. “Chasing” or increasing bet size based on your last bet (or series of bets) is not recommended. (This is true for most people; please see * Note * below.)
Over time, you may hear about various systems where you increase your bet size “knowing” that you are due to win sooner or later. In general, these systems don’t work. Eventually, a bad streak occurs and you are betting a recklessly large amount to re-coup losses.
In general, many of these approaches MIGHT seem to improve short-term performance – BUT at the HUGE expense of increasing your risk of ruin. A bad stretch could endanger your bankroll fairly quickly. If you DO succumb to the charms of various Martingale systems, please use some sort of systematic risk management method. In this business of sports investing, it pays to minimize your risk of ruin.
Professional money managers – as well as sensible sports investors – will agree that you should minimize the chances of “blowing out” your investment portfolio. Flat betting will help you to “stay the course” and ride the ups and downs of investing.
* Note *: Experienced gamblers might use a variation of a Martingale or “chase” systems – but will always have some sort of risk control in place. This is beyond the scope of this article but might be addressed in a future article on money management.
Next, you should think about the type of investor that you are. Are you aggressive or conservative? Are you experienced or a novice? The answers to these questions will help you to determine the size of your typical bet. This is called your “unit” size.
We typically recommend that a sports investor bet 1% – 3% of their bankroll on each bet. Conservative sports investors (or beginners) should bet 1%-2% on a play. Note that professionals are normally in the 1% range.
Aggressive sports investors might want to bet 3% on a play. 2% is a good medium; it allows you to withstand a losing streak while helping to build up your sports investing bankroll. Very aggressive investors might bet 4% or 5% of their bankroll on a bet, but this is too risky for most investors.
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Why not 4% or 5%? The short answer is: Streaks and the risk of ruin. If you bet amounts that are too large, a bad streak could cut your bankroll in half (or worse). You then might feel like you need to reduce your bet size – just before the inevitable hot streak. Smaller bet sizes are more prudent and allow you to stick to your approach and stay disciplined.
“True” Bankroll and “Risk Capital”
Whenever we talk about percentages of bankroll, most casual bettors feel that they are on the “high end” of the ranges we discuss. This might SEEM true – but only because the “true bankroll” for most casual bettors is higher than what they have in their accounts. That is, many bettors might have $X in their accounts, but are willing to add another $Y if they draw down their account. Professionals normally already know their “full bankroll” and need to preserve their “capital” versus “risk of ruin.”
Investors – and in this case, sports investors – need to understand the level of their “true bankroll” or “risk capital (allocated to sports).” Once investors take a serious look at their finances, they might better understand the “true” level or amount they allocate to sports investing. They might then realize that 1%-2% of their “true bankroll” or “risk capital” is indeed a realistic bet size.
Summary: Money Management and Playing Defense
Many of our articles focus on SportsInsights.com’s philosophies and contrarian strategies that have proven to work over time. In this article, we focused on money management – an area where most bettors do not pay enough attention. In essence, good “money management” is a lot like playing good defense. Money management will allow you to “stay in the game” during tough times so that good handicapping strategies (your offense) can put you ahead.
We do not guarantee that the trends and biases we’ve found will continue to exist. It is impossible to predict the future. Any serious academic research in the field of “market efficiencies” recognizes that inefficiencies may disappear over time. Once inefficiencies are discovered, it is only a matter of time before the market corrects itself. We do not guarantee our data is error-free. However, we’ve tried our best to make sure every score and percentage is correct.