RE: WaPo Story Now Online

Everything all better?

by , Nov 29, 2008 | 9:40 pm

OK, I just read Part 1 of the Washington Post story by Gilbert Gaul on cheating at Absolute Poker and Ultimate Bet. I thought it was great and on target and technically correct to the letter when discussing legal matters. I learned a bunch of stuff I didn’t know, too.

Two-and-a-half specific things caught my eye:

(The name of the alleged cheater has circulated widely among poker players on the Internet. The Post is not publishing his name because, even though he purportedly confessed to AbsolutePoker, the company did not release its records and would not discuss the matter. The alleged cheater declined requests to be interviewed.)

Maybe I just haven’t been following it close enough on the forums, but I’m wondering whom they’re referring to here.

The story also doesn’t reference the new formation of Cereus, after acknowledging that UB would likely lose its license and be out of business soon. Hmmm. But that’s really new, and this story was possibly put to bed a few weeks ago?

The other thing is the last graf:

The Kahnawake now say they operate one of the most secure Internet gambling operations in the world. Tokwiro says it has “established cutting-edge security systems that make us the safest site in the industry.” But Catania said he does not expect cheating to stop: “I’m sure there are people out there right now figuring out, let’s say, ‘Here’s a way we can do it again.’

Yikes, that last sentence leaves it open-ended as to how part two of the story will fall when it comes to legalization efforts.

I really like poker’s chances (because I sincerely believe despite our internal battles with shadiness, our industry is on the right side of legal issues here) … and from what I’ve learned in my rookie dabblings in poker (and strip-club) politics, the treatment this story is getting in Washington DC — a big investigative feature spread out over two days with lots of informative sidebars — now guarantees (I’m like 86 percent sure) that our issue is on the 2009 political agenda. I’m not totally comfortable yet, of course. Current feeling in my gut is comparable to waiting for the river when all-in against an 8- or 9-outer. A little unsettling. But hey, that’s what we came here for, right?

In addition to the story itself, the WP’s got a bunch of goodies for those who want to dig deeper, or just check their work:

So there you have it. It would hard to expect anything more thorough. Kudos to “special correspondent Gary Wise“, too, for playing poker-biz fixer for the WP investigative team turning over rocks.


  • Kevin Mathers

    Nat Arem, who was interviewed as part of the story offers his critique of the story on his blog at http://www.natarem.com/2008/11/30/washington-post-story-goes-online/

    The name not mentioned in the story is AJ Green (aka Allan Grimard)

    It seems most of the story was already written, seeing as how the Ultimate Bet stuff was tacked on at the end of the story.