I've read here: http://www.fraudaid.com/scamspam/lottery/foreign_lottery_federal_statute.htm that it is illegal for U.S. citizens to play foreign lotteries (although many Americans play the Canadian lotto, and many non-U.S. citizens play the U.S. lotto, so wtf?), however, is it illegal for U.S. citizens to play foreign sweepstakes? The difference between a lottery and a sweepstake being that to play a lottery, you have to pay to play, but sweepstakes are either completely free or require a free alternative method of entry next to the option with payment.
Now, of course, most of these are scams and whatnot, but let's say there is a genuine sweepstake in England organized by a certain company, where entry to the competition is either by paying or by the alternative and free method of applying by telephone/mail, etc.
Is it "illegal" for a U.S. citizen to participate in this foreign sweepstake, either by paying or by entering the competition by the alternative free method? Once again, there is a difference between a lottery (payment is necessary) and a sweepstake (payment is possible but not necessary), so does the law only apply for lotteries or sweepstakes as well?
If anyone could help, I'd appreciate it!