Apr 19, 2017

It could get easier to claim free drinks at casinos

"In Las Vegas, Drinks Flow a Little Less Freely: Casinos are introducing technology to signal when a person has played enough poker to get a complimentary pour; 'Is my light green?'" โ€” Wall Street journal A-Hed, by Chris Kirkham:

As Las Vegas has transformed into one of the world's most-visited tourist destinations, casino operators are re-examining the perks that historically lured gamblers. Over the past year, casinos have started charging for parking at resorts on the Strip, eliciting criticism from locals and longtime visitors who view free casino parking as a sacred tradition. Now operators have started scrutinizing complimentary drinks, introducing new technology at bars that track how much someone has gambledโ€”and rewards them accordingly ...
It's a shift from decades of more-informal interplay between bartenders and gamblers. ... Casinos on the Strip now derive a smaller share of revenue from gambling. In 1996, more than half of annual casino revenue on the Strip came from gambling. Last year, the share was down to about a third, according to the University of Nevada-Las Vegas. More of the revenue comes from hotels, restaurants and bars....
So far the system applies only to machines at casino bars. Players at slot machines on the floor can still wave down cocktail servers for free drinks.

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Big video game conference delayed amid coronavirus concerns

Photo: GDC

Next month's Game Developers Conference in San Francisco became the latest tech event to be cancelled or postponed amid growing concerns over the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The big picture: A growing number of events are being scrapped, including Mobile World Congress and Facebook's F8 developer conference. Some, like the giant SXSW event in Austin, insist they are moving forward.

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Trump again nominates Rep. John Ratcliffe for intelligence chief

Ratcliffe at CPAC on Feb. 27. Photo: Michael Brochstein/Echoes Wire/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

President Trump again nominated Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-Texas) as Director of National Intelligence (DNI), in a tweet on Friday.

Catch up quick: If confirmed, Ratcliffe would eventually replace Richard Grenell, a staunch defender of Trump and former U.S. ambassador to Germany who was installed as the acting DNI only a few weeks ago. Grenell would have had to leave the post on March 11 unless Trump formally nominated someone else to oversee the U.S. intelligence community, the New York Times reports.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy