Bookmakers and betting
A bookmaker is someone who accepts cash bets on a specific result, and pays off on these bets if they prove to be correct. The legality of this profession varies by the country you are in but also in countries where gambling is illegal it’s often easy to find bookmakers, as people seem to have an huge interest in and are facinated by gambling. In countries where betting is legal bookmakers are often regulated by the government and they are often required to pay certain fees and taxes to the state as well.
The term bookmaker is often foreshortened to bookie. Bookmakers are sometimes called turf accountants since they are frequent visitors at racetracks. Bookmakers offer betting opportunities in a wide range of sports, including greyhound racing, horse racing, tennis, motor racing, American football and so on. Some even take bets on the likelihood of various events such as elections or the outcome of a reality-TV show.
In general, the bookmaker is an expert in the area where he or she provides services. Bookmakers have to be extremely knowledgeable or they will not be able to make a profit. The bokkmakers goal is to establish a point spread that makes him a winner no matter what the outcome of an event is. This requires constant adjustments of the odds, and sometimes bookmakers even buy bets from another bookmaker to create a desired spread.
In countries where betting and gambling is legal, it is often possible to bet directly in a sporting event. In other regions, bookmakers operate in shop windows far from the track or arena, in some cases, these bookmakers are actually working within the law. Thanks to public Internet access in most countries some bookmakers operates world-wide. People who want to do online betting should be very careful, because while there are completely legitimate online betting systems, it is not unusual to encounter a scam.