Viewers and readers regularly ask about how we take pics and videos in a casino. I am going to discuss this issue, as there is no point in avoiding it.
The RoadGambler.com reason for taking pics and videos is to put the reader or viewer in my shoes. There are plenty of sites out there that will do a casino or table games write up, and use one or two pics, or even use stock pics. At RoadGambler.com we will never use stock pics. Unless indicated otherwise, all pics and videos are taken by either the RoadGambler himself or RoadGambler.com staff.
Most people are supportive of our pics and videos; however, there are a few who are against taking pics and videos. To those who oppose our pics and videos, we respond by saying that this is the 21st century, where practically everyone has a camera on them. If it’s a public space, then it’s fair game for pics and videos. Prior to taking pics and videos in any jurisdiction, we will research the relevant laws regarding photography. If there are any relevant laws that prohibit cameras or the taking of pics, we will not do so.
It’s our suspicion that while casinos cannot condone the videos and pics, they secretly are appreciative of the videos for the free publicity and free promotion. At RoadGambler.com, we try very hard to be fair and subjective when speaking about a casino and the staff.
Casinos need to get over the phobia of cameras. It’s somewhat hypocritical for a casino to prohibit cameras, while their own cameras are recording practically every inch of the casino. Also, there is the issue of millennials and how casinos should market to millennials. Casinos are trying games such as skill-based slots and various electronic games when the solution is right in front of them: millennials love Instagram and taking pics. Let them take pics!
As an addendum to the above policy, the RoadGambler policy is to also respect privacy, which is why we will censor faces, names, or any identifying characteristic. Also, if anyone believes that they can be identified in any of our videos or posts, we will gladly either take down the post or video or censor and re-upload the video, if it is possible to entirely remove the requesting party.
This issue has recently come into play with our Caesars Palace video. A little bit of background about the video, in case you aren’t familiar…
I was in Las Vegas for a short business trip and ended up playing craps at Caesars Palace. My friend was also playing at a different game and texted me and told me to come to his table. He knows I am recording the game. I have not mentioned that we were there with other people who we know. They all knew that I was recording.
Here is a bit of a spoiler, so don’t read the rest of this subpart, if you don’t want to ruin the surprise in the next video (which I will link when it goes live), my friend ends up hitting a huge $100 Make ‘Em All and a $25 small, while another person who was with us hit a very large ATS. At first, I was told it was $100/$100/$100, but upon watching the video I saw something different than what was told to me; however, it is still the largest real ATS hit recorded on video.
As we were driving to the airport, I showed my friend the video. We had a good laugh and oooh and ahhh’ed about what happened. Then he told me, ‘I’m not sure I want that made public.’
WTF?! You told me to come record you!
His response was that he didn’t think he would hit the All. He had already hit a $100 Tall and he was happy with having hit the Tall.
After some more cajoling, and pointing out that he called me away from my game to his game, and this leaving me without ending footage to my game, he capitulated after I promised that I would aggressively censor his face. He granted permission to show the ATS hit, but not the rest of the game. Out of respect for his privacy, the rest of the Caesars Palace footage will be left on the cutting room floor.
It’s too bad because the existing roll after the ATS hit went for another 15 minutes or so. Oh well. I’m happy he allowed me to show the ATS hit, which is a record for live game footage that has never been seen before.
I’m not going to tempt fate by convincing the guy to let me post the entire footage. He may retract the permission he gave for the ATS footage, which I think is more historical because it’s never been seen before.
‘HOW DO YOU OBTAIN THE VIDEOS?’
This is a question that comes up often.
To be blunt, I am not able to comment on how we obtain the videos. If we commented, there would be no further videos. I will state that often, various persons at the table are aware that we are recording. Sometimes, the camera is out there in the open, without any attempt to hide it. Having a big bankroll often helps, as does a good relationship with my casino host.
PICS AND VIDEOS GOING FORWARD
We have several ideas going forward, which we are still contemplating.
I have a long time friend who is a contract go-go dancer in Las Vegas, and she has stated that she would be okay if we took videos of her dancing in the party pit bar, when she is away from the gaming floor.
My wife has also indicated that it would generate significant interest if we did a pictorial on Las Vegas cocktail waitresses. While cocktail waitresses are a staple of the Las Vegas experience, I’m not so sure it would be positive interest. Also, these are the types of pics where I would want at least implied consent from the cocktail waitress looking into the camera and smiling at the camera. I am not sure how many cocktail waitresses would consent to pictures if asked.
I am still debating some of these ideas, as it may offend some of the more family-oriented viewers and readers.
If you have any input on this topic, let me know in the comment below.
TEXT VERSUS NO TEXT FOR VIDEOS
Another issue that we are still debating is the presence of text in the videos. While the vast majority of public comments are in favor of explanatory comments and texts, we receive a number of emails stating that viewers prefer no text.
My hypothesis is that people may prefer the clean look of no text because it allows them to be lost in the experience of watching the video. I know that when I am watching a movie or TV show, I prefer no closed captioning in the movie.
The most popular RoadGambler video has no in-game text. Currently, that video stands with over 83,000 views in two months of being live.
If this trend continues, we will do a mix of videos, some with text and some without text.
Pics and videos are what makes RoadGambler.com stand apart from other gambling blogs and websites. Know that we will continue to obtain pics and videos, but we will do it in a respectful way that takes privacy into consideration.