As fun as betting with friends is, it’s fraught with “payout risk.” How many times have you and a buddy agreed to a wager on an NFL game or something stupid like who can put down fifty buffalo wings first only to have the whole bet break down after all is said and done?
“We didn’t shake on it!”
“No, I never agreed that I had to eat the WHOLE wing!!”
You know, things like that. Well, there’s an app to help with that. It’s called YouBetMe. The app has been around for quite a while now but earlier today was the first time I’d even heard about it. At the risk of telling you about old news, I’d like to explain what it’s all about. This is an online betting blog after all.
YouBetMe is made to facilitate wagers between normal, everyday people. You can create custom bets from scratch or choose from a large number of existing wagers that come preloaded in the app. Once you have a wager all set up, you can send it to your friend. If your friend accepts, the bet is on.
After that, neither you nor your friend has any excuse after the bet. The loser has to pay up or forever face the shame of backing out of a bet that you both had in writing. For even more emphasis, you can invite other people to join your bets as spectators, aka witnesses.
Payouts are determined by the user as well. YouBetMe has dozens of pre-written payouts that range from coughing up money to doing pushups to getting a date with your friend’s sister. You also have the option to come up with your own unique payouts whether they be money, favors or embarrassing photos.
One of the coolest features in the app is live odds for football, basketball and baseball. This comes in handy if you and a friend want to bet on an upcoming game and make it fair. You can always set your own odds of course, but it’s handy to have the option to go with Vegas odds on any sports wager.
Is this legal?
YouBetMe is completely legal because it doesn’t handle financial transactions. It’s still up to you and your friends to make good on your promises. YouBetMe only acts as the medium by which you and your buddies can keep track of your bets and cement them with something that sticks better than an oral contract.
So no, YouBetMe still doesn’t fix it when people refuse to pay, but at least it nixes the excuses people are likely to come up with when they lose. You guys both have to read the terms and agree before the bet is booked. After that, there are no excuses.
Can I use this to become a real life bookie?
I wouldn’t recommend doing that. YouBetMe is legal because it doesn’t handle the money. Individual wagers between two people are legal because they don’t involve the “business” of bookmaking. But once you start handling money as a third-party bookmaker or you start taking bets from lots of other people, you enter the realm of criminality. It’s stupid, I know, but it’s the law.
Which platforms is this for?
It’s only active on the iOS at the moment but they’re working on an Android version as we speak. In fact, you can visit the YouBetMe website and sign up with your name and e-mail to be an Android beta tester. We’ll have this baby on all the important platforms soon enough.
Wes Burns has more than a decade’s worth of experience as a writer, researcher, and analyst in the legal online betting industry and is co-founder of OnlineBettingSites.com. Wes approaches his work from the viewpoint of players.