Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Pondering the Aftermath

Update: The official statement is, apparently, that Full Tilt and Pokerstars have reached an agreement with the DoJ and will return all US players money, as well as continue service outside the United States, presumably in exchange for obscene amounts of money in fines.

However, at this point, the DoJ is saying "hey, we don't want your money, we'll make sure FT gives it back" while FT says "Hey, we want to give you your money, but the DoJ has it and won't give it up.

It's probably a waiting game at this point.

Friday April 15 is certain to become a legendary date in online poker history, as the United States Department of Justice issued a scathing indictment against three major poker sites: Pokerstars, Full Tilt Poker, and Absolute/Ultimate Bet.

With the apparent removal of 20bb tables from Party Poker, Pokerstars and Full Tilt are rapidly becoming not only the best places to play, but the o
nly places, if you're a short stack player. If you're an American, then it's no choice at all.

I wish there was more that could be said on the topic, but for now it's all questions and no answers. It's unclear as to when (if) American players will be able to access their bankrolls on these sites, and these poker giants are currently blasted with epic volumes of customer e-mail, and hesitant to change customer addresses (I suspect their suspicions may be aroused by the thousands who allegedly managed to relocate outside the U.S. mere days after the announcement.)

For the record, my next blog post wasn't going to be about this at all. It was going to be about the importance of taking time off from your regular poker play. I guess I jinxed us all, because we're all getting a bit of time off. Even if you're not an American player, game quantity is shrinking and shifting considerably.

For those of you that don't know, I currently live in South Korea. My wife and I went on vacation to the port city of Busan, famed for its beautiful beaches. Yep, that means Asian swimsuit girl post-savers.

Thanks a lot, Department of Justice.

So for now, we wait.

I'm one of the "lucky" few, planning on moving to Canada in the next few months anyway to rebuild. How to rebuild is still a big question. It's a question that will likely remain unanswered in the coming weeks, as the dust on this won't settle anytime soon.

Good luck everyone, no matter how your poker is (or isn't) going. If the poker community can use their collective "one time" to find a strong way through this, I'd submit now is the time to bust it out.

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