It is hard to come up with a profession that has a worse reputation than the handicapping industry and, unfortunately, that reputation is well-deserved for many reasons. Over 99% of handicappers and/or handicapping services are long-term losers who operate in a vail of secrecy without accountability or transparency. While the internet has helped to expose many of the scam-artists who pervade the industry, the sad truth is that many services still operate high-pressure boiler-room operations that are responsible for destroying many lives.
False promises are made, lies are told and misleading sales tactics are utilized in a never-ending pursuit of the gamblers’ credit card number. Gamblers have lost tens of thousands of dollars to a stranger on the other end of the phone who promised them “1000 Dime Locks” and/or “Inside Information” winners. Of course, when the games lose, the harassing phone calls commence with the gambler being told that if he pays another $500, he can get the “Gold Club Package” which produces “80% winners.”
The unethical and unscrupulous business practices by sports handicapping services will never end unless the betting public demands the following:
I. Unconditional Transparency
Every handicapping service should have their results published contemporaneously for consumers to see. Short-term records and results are unacceptable. With the advent of the internet, there is simply no justifiable reason for handicapping services to avoid publishing their selections and results shortly have game time.
Of course, 99% of handicapping services do not publish their records because they are simply atrocious. Think about it – if a service was genuinely a long-term winner, it would jump at the opportunity to advertise its winning selections/product on the homepage. The fact that the vast majority of services do not offer contemporaneous record-keeping speaks volumes about the disingenuous nature of the industry at large.
II. Independent Documentation and Verification
Every handicapping service should be documented by a third-party monitoring service that is independent of the handicapping industry. Simple, right? Unfortunately, 99% of handicapping services refuse to be monitored because they already know the truth about their product. Pro Edge is monitored by TrackPicks.com, an independent, non-biased sports handicapping monitoring service whose goal is to bring integrity to the sports handicapping profession.
III. True Independence from the Sports Book Industry
Have you noticed how a vast majority of sports handicapping sites litter their homepage with sportsbook banners and related promotions? These sports handicapping services are engaged in an inherent conflict of interest as their affiliation with off shore sportsbooks allows them to collect a percentage of their client’s losses at the very sportsbooks they promote! Pro Edge explicitly rejects any and all affiliations with sportsbooks, thereby, preserving and protecting its independence.
The three recommendations above are just a start to reforming a broken and badly flawed handicapping industry. Sports bettors should also demand confidentiality and respect, together with a knowledgeable support network and long-term results.