BitBet.us Review (Scam/Still Online)
First appearing online in the middle of 2013, BitBet.us looked to be a legitimate Bitcoin wagering operation that was unique in how it was set up for wagering. BitBet operated on players being able to wager Bitcoin on particular propositions, mostly dealing with financial aspect of Bitcoin itself. Players interested in wagering on the propositions would place a deposit, then choose the particular side of the proposition that that they wanted. For a hypothetical example, a proposition bet that listed that Bitcoin would be above or below the price of $400 at the end of a particular month. On the outside looking in, it looked like a fun way to bet financial futures with Bitcoin, but it’s major red flags from the very beginning seemed to be a concern that many players using BitBet.us failed to see.
One of the bigger red flags BitBet had was the fact that a lot of the propositions weren’t even set in a professional manner. The site displayed and continues to display calculations that are frankly either too aggressive or too conservative in the approach of how proposition bets are calculated. Numbers that are too highly skewed will obviously take on a lot of punters for that side, just as a line in a particular sporting event might garner too much attention towards. Just as a hypothetical example, it is like two evenly matched World Cup teams known for their defense, being given a total goals line of 4 and a half, with no research being done on why that number was set that high. While some of the numbers do make sense, causing an equal amount of wagers for each side, quite a bit of the proposition bets are completely off. Which leads to red flag #2.
The second red flag that BitBet has is the fact that the actual propositional bet figure never changes to adjust to the popularity of either side, and pays out odds after all confirmed bets are completed. That means that the player thinking at the beginning that he will get nearly even odds, might get a payout that is significantly lower than what they first thought. Going back to the above World Cup example, when players wager on odds, they lock in the payout at the time of the wager. So if the odds for the under/over total of 4.5 (which for this example are -110 American or 1.90 Decimal), then that is the payout the player receives. If too many players are in favor of one side more than the other, the line would change, but the players would still keep the price they wagered on. BitBet.us explains their process on how they payout as such:
“Every bet has two sides. Every bettor on the winning side will receive as follows : 99% of his original bet sum (1% goes to BitBet.us) plus 99% of his bet times the total bet by the losing side multiplied by his bet’s total weight and divided by the winning side total weight.
For a practical example consider the famous “Josh Zerlan” bet. Total losing pool was 791.28 BTC. Total winning weight was 63`783`932. Let’s consider the first bet, 0.11 BTC. It got in at 99`922 weight. This bet would thus receive 99% of 0.11, so 0.1089 plus 99% of 0.11 * 791.28 * 99`922 / 63`783`932 = 0.134991959. So in total he should receive 0.243891959 (The amt listed on the site, ie 0.24389335 differs slightly. The reason is that the loser pool is listed as truncated to two decimals for space considerations, but the actual engine uses the full value. This will make us constantly if slightly underevaluate winnings.)
An important point to consider is that if the “plus” side of that calculation does not exceed the 1% charged by BitBet it is possible to win less BTC than the original bet. So for instance if someone bets 10`000 BTC and the losing side consists of 1 BTC only then the 10`000 bettor will have lost 100 BTC in BitBet fees for a maximum upside of 1 BTC (because obviously he can’t win more than what the other people have bet).
The same applies for late bets, if the odds are even money (1:1) then a bet made at weight 1`000 or under is unlikely to walk away whole, even should it win. If the odds are 10:1 in favour of the winning side that weight cutoff becomes 10`000. If the odds are 10:1 against the winning side then that weight cutoff becomes 100. As a general rule of thumb the sooner you bet, the more BTC you stand to gain.”
In a simplified version of that confusing explanation, it’s basically saying you gain or lose dependent on the overall outcome of how many people have won or lost, and not necessarily favored to gain or lose what you might have expected. A red flag when it comes to any sort of wagering, are the desired payouts when a player places a wager.
The third and biggest complaint is the amount of legitimate complaints that can be found about the integrity of BitBet.us. While all complaints may not be valid in some may come from sore losers, it is worth noting that BitBet never responds to any of the complaints, which has ultimately indicated that they are most likely a scam. One of the most common complaints that seem to be related to BitBet.us is the fact that bets are being taken but once it is time for the bet to be resolved, they basically seem to be “missing from the records”, and are never returned to the player and essentially are stolen.