Freitag, 15. April 2011
Doomsday / AND SUDDENLY AMERICA IS GONE
Today finally was the day. Some pessimists will say "I saw that coming long time ago", some optimists will just shake their heads and most players will probably not really believe yet what happend about 8 hours ago. But one thing is pretty damn clear. This day will change everything in case of Onlinepoker in it's current form.
So what happend?
Yesterday, friday the 15th I decided instead to go out and get shitfaced to do some work aka Poker instead. Shortly after I began my first session I became aware of the news that the 3 biggest pokersites who still operate in the USA are charged in case of illegal gambling, money laundry and some other stuff. At first I was like whatever but then after some time every american fellow player disappeared from the tables and in this moment I became aware that this might be really serious and in fact it is. Every US based player is from now on banned from playing Online-Poker at Pokerstars, Fulltilt or Ultimate Bet. And from what I read so far I don't expect to see one of these guys back at one of my tables this year.
I know alot of these people who play exclusively for a living like I do and am in contact with some of them via Facebook and Skype. I would say for 95% of them poker is their only source of income and it's a pretty solid income or better said was a solid income. Some of them even make more money in a month than other people in 2 years of working. All these guys got fired tonight, everyone of them became unemployed from one second to another without any warning. For many of them there will be only one valid possibilty: Move home as soon as possible to a country where poker is still legal. For most of them it will be Canada - some of them I might see in Malta this summer. But there will be also guys who cannot just move and leave everything behind. Guys who are studying at a university, guys who have a family, guys who have kids, etc.
Good luck from my part to each of them whatever they end up doing.
Alot of players paniced today - me included. Is my money safe? What should I do? Will poker stay profitable? Will they ban it in Europe as well?
From my point of view the money should be still safe because for europeans there isn't much changing. I still have a significant 5 digits amount of $ online and am not really worried. Nevertheless I withdraw alot today, just to be safe if I end up being wrong in that case.
For me personally this development is definitely a good development short-term. Tonight the games were amazing and this will definitely stay like this for a while. Longterm it probably will be getting tougher especially at the midstakes because most of the people playing these stakes making over 100k a year and everyone of them will go abroad for sure because there is no other way.
NL200 will stay about the same I think because many of the US guys who are breakeven there will be now looking for alternatives besides poker. NL100 probably even gets softer because these regs are not necessarily going abroad and start working/playing life/shooting themselves instead.
The bad thing is that traffic will decrease significantly anyways for obvious reasons. When I had 60 tables to pick from before this, I will now end up having only 25-40 to choose from. Especially for the guys who playing mainly for rakeback and achieving a high VIP status this will cause problems when they sometimes just cannot find enough tables to play to make enough points. Since I'm not really planning to repeat Supernova Elite for the 3rd year in a row this isn't the worst problem for me. I'm fine when I only have 16 tables to play instead of 24 - no problemo.
Another good thing for me might be that my vampire days are finally counted. When there are no more americans than I don't have to play american time which means for me to play the peak from 9pm until 6 in the morning. So maybe I be able to get a "solid" schedule somehow where I wake noonish and go to bed at 2am. Who knows!
One thing is clear, american or not, nobody will forget this day soon... god bless Europe - continent of the free :)
- 3 biggest Pokersites who operate in US are charged of illegal gambling and money laundry
- american players are from now on not allowed to participate in realmoney games at Stars, FT and UB
- in europe everything stays the same
- traffic will decrease and therefore it will be harder to achieve high VIP goals at Stars
- games will get better short-term but probably end up getting tougher longterm
- our bankrolls should be safe