'Consultation over the Gambling Introductory Offer Loopholes board' blog discussion



  • Ghost_2005
    Ghost_2005 Forumite Posts: 2,900
    Tenth Anniversary 1,000 Posts
    Before commenting on the broader issues of how the forum operates, I just want to stress what an absolute godsend GIOL was for me personally.

    Just over a year ago I was suffering severe financial hardship and while I'd tried many other ways to gain some extra cash (selling stuff on ebay, comping etc.), nothing I'd found was doing more than offering a tiny stop gap to my ailing financial health.

    In a year of match betting I made approx £6,000 tax free and am in a far better state of health both financially and personally as a result.

    Yes it is a complex area and not for the faint hearted. It took me a lot of reading and re-reading before I took the plunge and there were a lot of large warning notices that came with GIOL to advise people of the dangers and I took those on board.

    If the GIOL board had not existed, I would not have read about it elsewhere on the MSE forums and made my way over there. I have no interest in gambling outside of the money making opportunities it gives me and very much doubt I would ever have found out about these loopholes and exploited them without the existence of these boards on MSE.

    For people that may be in a similar situation to the one I was in a year ago, it would be sad if this very rewarding money making opportunity was no longer promoted here.
  • Super_Dash
    Super_Dash Forumite Posts: 771 Forumite
    The IceSave debacle should have had more criticism yes. As should posts advertising questionable bookies as risk free. I myself go into many a questionable bookie but would never have when I started if I had known they were questionable. This is the issue, bookies with no credence are being promoted, offers which are far from risk free are being promoted and the "its ok to have a little mug" attitude is more prevalent which makes the forum stray far from its remit.

    I would say don't close the forum but have a trial period where only risk free content can be posted, warnings from posters about potential issues should be flagged or stickied or something so that people can see them without reading all 100 pages of a thread and we'll be in much better shape.

    Would be sad to see the forum go but in its current form it is something quite different than when I originally signed up.
    Money don't make itself
  • laughingboy
    laughingboy Forumite Posts: 382 Forumite
    Compared to years ago the offers are far too complex, many offers require 'specialist' spreadsheets to calculate stakes, which many people on here do not understand. Dare I say it many don't even understand the basic 'matcher' concept! How do you police something you don't understand, answer: you can't.

    Look at the front page now, no offer worthy of a mention, paltry offers (corbettsports £5 in casino for £10 bet, Getwin bet £5 for £10, Allyoubet £10 refund and of course the behemoth that is the Betfair multiples thread).

    The board has moved away from its remit of gambling introductory loopholes (yes thats where GIOL comes from) to new methods totally unsuitable for MSE
  • Itchy
    Itchy Forumite Posts: 563 Forumite
    This shouldn't turn into a ICEsave / PRS slanging game - 2 small (yet material) issues which should not detract from all the other good work onboth MSE and GIOL.
    TGT charge c£30 to sign up for info that is free and supplied on our forum and they have a vested interest in getting our forum closed
    Remove the riskier "non core" bookmakers but keep the offers for pure matched betting / risk free.
    It will take a bit of time to realign what is accepted but don't throw the baby out with the bath water.
  • blades123
    blades123 Forumite Posts: 2,634 Forumite
    There are a number of issues on here.

    Firstly: everyone should know about the laws regarding bookmakers and if they into administration / bust. Punters money is not protected and are last in the que when it comes to being paid out through liquidation / administration procedures. Any of the highstreet bookies could go into administration, esp if the banks recall their loans so people should beware that their money is not safe in a bookmaker. The business model of PRS was not the best but in terms of the board rules, it was considered as "risk-free" since you match bet the prices that were given. I doubt MSE could start saying which bookie people should use.

    Secondly, you're not going to get a fair discussion regarding the future of GIOL. The majority of people who say to close it will be Trolls, a term that we use to describe people who take offers but contribute nothing. These people want to keep all the best offers for themselves and will abuse anyone who posts a good offer which is risk free - first hand experience at this when I've posted an offer in the past.

    Finally, the mods do a great job of keeping tabs on the board. The main prob tho is new members not reading the intro guide or not actually using the search function.
    I use multimatcher lazza which has the tab "bonus if 0-0"
  • bargepole
    bargepole Forumite Posts: 3,228
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    Would it be possible to modify the software so that every post in that board is prefaced by the words "This may NOT be risk free. Matched betting and arbitrage are complex subjects, please make sure you fully understand how they work before depositing any money. As a general rule of thumb, if you haven't regularly played on Betfair or a similar betting exchange for the past three years, this is probably not for you".

    I have been providing assistance, including Lay Representation at Court hearings (current score: won 57, lost 14), to defendants in parking cases for over 5 years. I have an LLB (Hons) degree, and have a Graduate Diploma in Civil Litigation from CILEx. However, any advice given on these forums by me is NOT formal legal advice, and I accept no liability for its accuracy.
  • Isambard
    Isambard Forumite Posts: 866 Forumite
    Just wanna chime in. GIOL made me enough money to get by when I was ill for a year and it's helping me top up my degree. Granted, there's a lot of offers I don't understand well enough nowdays to go in for so I don't go in for them. I really think that at the very least this board should be made private to stop lurkers. I don't contribute as much as I'd like because there are people far more knowledgeable than I am and quicker off the mark to post! Sure it will move elsewhere but there's so many clever folks on here and a really strong archive of information it would be a shame to lose it all.
  • Lola_Lorensen
    Lola_Lorensen Forumite Posts: 45 Forumite
    The problem with a board like this is it's only risk free if you bother to read instructions in posts, employ the correct techniques and do the research involved. I would suggest it is people that don't do that in the first place who are making the most complaints rather than anyone else. The only money I've lost is from my own mistakes from not reading terms and conditions of offers or making the wrong calculations.

    One thing I would suggest however is that it is more strictly monitored for people posting relevant information in the right place. One of the reasons I expect people don't bother to read the parts of threads they need to is because it is taken up with hundreds of posts of people gloating over being £1 up on a slot or panicking that a bookie hasn't paid out to their moneybookers account within 20 nanoseconds of a request.

    It would be a shame to see this board close because of a few highly stupid, ignorant and impatient folk. I would say on balance it has probably made far more money for the sensible and experienced match bettors than it's lost for idiots.
  • darloscot
    darloscot Forumite Posts: 2,832 Forumite
    As with Ghost_2005, I also started a little over a year ago. I have made about £6k, with a few errors along the way. That was from a £200 starting point with help from the forum and the tools that are so kindly shared. Offers come and offers go, but I think someone starting today can expect over £5k in the next 12 months without any significant risk except user error risk. To reach that level you do need to be willing to use much of your profits as float. I could take £2k out of my float without effecting my earning potential, but would not want to take much more out.

    The forum could be improved, much of the reference material is now dated and discusses sign ups that are no longer there. However, the methods remian the same. The problem is of course that only experienced people could re-write these and that is time consuming. What material there is is perfectly adequite.

    One of the main issues with the board are the attacks that come from other sites that do not want to encourage others to look into matched betting. After all, bookies have limited promotional budgets. If a bookie has a £10k budget and 1000 people take a promo then ther is £10 each. If only 100 know of a promo then there is £100 each. That is the basic rational of people who come over from other forums to click "spam" when a decent new offer or loophole is posted. They like it to be their little secret, and not to share with a wider community.

    Shortly this thread will come under attack. There will be numerous posts from "low count" posters claiming to have lost money on the back of the GIOL board, and claiming that the board promotes unacceptable risks. Do not be swayed by this influx.

    If your editorial board cannot judge what is complex then perhaps they should spend a week match betting. They will quickly learn the methods and see the potential. Anyone who has access to a computer, to microsoft excel, and who is reanably numerate will be able to pick up the basics in no time. I certainly hope most of the editors would tick these boxes!
  • foolishman
    foolishman Forumite Posts: 872 Forumite
    Only been doing it since May and I'm sure, like me, everyone is well aware of the risks involved. It always seems to be policed pretty well.
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