Online Poker on the Uptick?

Garden State Super Series marks a return to positive directions

by , Sep 13, 2014 | 6:08 pm

GSSS-partyBelieve it or not, I’m playing online poker again. I’ve bought in three times already, so yay, it works (and is super-easy to play for real money), but cannot yet report on the cash-out process, because you know … damn river.

But now that we have online poker in Nevada definitively running and here to stay, I’ve started paying a little more attention, and it seems a lotta eyes are on New Jersey right now. Not only do you have Gov. Chris Christie making an aggressive, courts- and DOJ-challenging push for fully legalized and legitimized sports betting inside his borders, but also you have poker-loving state senator Ray Lesniak committed to making the state a global leader in online gambling (sports betting included) and start welcoming international players into the virtual borders of the Garden State without having to show a passport. Sure, Atlantic City may be closing down casinos, but sometimes you gotta get rid of the chaff. And that’s kinda what we could be seeing as two big poker tournament main events in New Jersey — one live and one online — coincide with all the semi-related New Jersey casino-world buzz.

The live tournament is the WPT Borgata Poker Open — a poker-world stalwart that has been serving up big-time televised final tables since Season 2 of the World Poker Tour. (They’re now in Season 13.) This year’s main event is a $3,500 buy-in, with $3 million guaranteed. They expect a good turnout based on preliminary events and online qualifiers that have been running on partypoker in New Jersey as well as partypoker worldwide.

But also going on simultaneously is partypoker’s Garden State Super Series — an online event open to anyone within New Jersey borders that’s shaping up to be the largest online tournament series in New Jersey history, and for that matter US history of the licensed and regulated sort. Both main events kick off on Sunday, with the GSSS guaranteeing $250,000 in prize pool — it’s a $200 buy-in — and $50,000 minimum for the winner.

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Education of a Poker Player Responsible Gaming Service Provider

A scholastic primer on problem-gambling research in an Internet age

by , Aug 4, 2014 | 4:51 pm

It’s Responsible Gaming Education Week, August 4-8, you probably know, or maybe not, because “responsible gaming” isn’t exactly something we celebrate in a culture that extols the virtue of being “All In”. And it’s not likely that poker is about to see any special prizes for best bankroll management or superior game selection or, say, excellent investment of tournament winnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization.

A man drops his wife off at the Palms Casino Resort, with a license plate educating his followers about a key tenet of responsible gaming.

So RGEW is an annual campaign from the National Center for Responsible Gaming, which is the AGA’s officially independent 501c3 that gets $25 million (a year?) from the casino industry to fund academic research in a transparent, peer-reviewed way that tries really hard to not look like Mad Men-era tobacco science.

This year’s theme: “Get to Know Responsible Gaming”. (A sensible revision to 2012’s plausibly oxymoronic “All In for Responsible Gaming”, no?) Anyhow, this new campaign caught my eye in part because I spent the better part of a semester last year doing research about gaming-related media and their connection to irresponsible gambling, particularly among those most vulnerable to manipulative messaging. Have a look if you like at 30+ pages of what is essentially just literature review on:

The Relationship between Digital Media and Gambling Behaviors
among Adolescents and Problem Gamblers

It’s riveting, I swear — delightfully long, dry, and unwieldy. I laughed, I cried, but mostly just committed follicular assault on myself while trying to grasp tenets of “academic writing” and APA style. (“Too much personality in your verbs,” my professor balked.)

Hey, it was good enough for a B. And if I learned anything from the process, it was that in a regulated industry there’s far more to the business of responsible gaming than a few glossy brochures in a dusty casino next to the taunting ATMs.


Happy Birthday, Sheldon Adelson!

Into his ninth decade, casino mogul has everything except poker's love

by , | 4:40 am

Sheldon Adelson turns 81 today, which makes him still just a kid according to my grandmother. We of course all know Adelson is a wealthy man, but I didn’t realize he was the richest person in Nevada (like by far). I mean sure, he woulda made my shortlist if you asked, but I didn’t really place his economic stature in context until seeing this bit of data porn showing who has the largest net worth by state.

adelson-map

So what do you get a man who has everything? OK, maybe Adelson doesn’t have everything, but he does have more personal wealth than the GDP of nearly 100 independent nations. He has so much money ($35.7 billion) that he could singlehandedly pay off ALL of Caesars’ debt and still have more than $12 billion left over — enough to still be the richest person in Nevada, as well as 34 other American states. Sooo … maybe just close your eyes and make a wish?


Chad Brown Memorial Tournament

Ode to a champion

by , Jul 9, 2014 | 12:54 pm

There are a few people who stand out in poker because they do things differently than most everyone else — in ways we all know we’d stand to benefit by emulating. Unfortunately, too often we don’t recognize that until these people are gone. Chad Brown will forever be attached to the Summer of 2014 for a bracelet he probably wished he didn’t have to win, and on Sunday is the farewell event open to players who want to remember poker is all about real life and real lives … and that’s what can make it so fun.

More at downtownchadbrown.org.

chadbrownwebflyer1


The odds of being dealt a Royal Flush

by , Jul 3, 2014 | 11:41 pm

Even novice players know that a Royal Flush is the ultimate poker hand but even many experienced players might not realise just how rare getting the ten, jack, queen, king and ace of one suit actually is. Although movies like Casino Royale have made this most sought after hand seem within the realms of possibility the odds are truly stacked against you.

Of course, the chances of getting a Royal Flush no more difficult than getting any other 5 specific cards in a straight flush. A Royal Flush is 1 specific straight flush and there are 4 different ways in can occur, one for each suit. There are 2,598,960 different combinations in 5 card poker so there is a 4/2,598,960 or 1: 649,740 chance of getting a specific straight flush, including a Royal Flush using the formula (1/p) -1:1, with “p” being probability. The chances of drawing any straight flush, aside from a Royal Flush, are reduced to 1:72,192 since there are now 9 different hands which can be used to in 36 ways to make the hand.

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Liverpool striker, Luis Suarez, the new ambassador of ‘888poker room’

by , Jun 18, 2014 | 1:49 pm

Luis_Suarez-poker

Luis Suarez, the Liverpool and the Uruguayan national team striker that is participating in the World Cup in Brazil, has been was named last month in Barcelona as the new ambassador of 888poker, one of the world’s leading poker rooms.

Recently chosen as ‘Best Player’ of the English Premier League by the association of the press and the competition itself, Luis Suarez is also a serious candidate to the ‘Golden Boot’ for this 2013/14 season. The Uruguayan sum 31 goals, the same as Cristiano Ronaldo (31), and three more than Leo Messi (28), his closest pursuers.

Suárez has said during the presentation that due to commitments with preparing the World Cup selection, he may not take part in events such as the WSOP, but has announced that in the near future he will appear in tournaments, both live and online.

The Uruguayan striker joins the 888poker team which already includes other athletes , although many of them are better known in the UK than in any other country.

“Luis is going to do a lot of very special things with our customers. He will bring exclusive content with him and users will be able to play online against him. That’s fantastic,” explained 888poker staff members.

In poker terms, the Uruguayan discovered it’s a game he really likes. “I love playing poker. It needs a lot of concentration and competitiveness that is exciting. I Like it. And everybody likes. I believe that to play for this home will be great fun.”


Poker’s Newest Fan?

On mai wai to Dubyooessopee

by , Jun 4, 2014 | 4:12 pm

Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to poker Mr. Dwight Hiward — someone with the clever foresight to have been named after what would become a plausibly convenient typo for a popular basketball player’s name. A couple clicks reveal @pokerati’s new follower is way into poker. And hey, if his actual tweets turn out to be some new style of poker metaphor, gotta say … a little rough, but I think I like where you’re going with that, kid!

Dwight Howard Twitter


Table Image

Scratched up and worn out but still holding strong

by , Jun 2, 2014 | 7:12 pm

Pokerati Cut Card

Nightly pic from the trenches. Good to see Pokerati still in some way part of the WSOP.


Tags:

Bravo at the WSOP

by , | 1:10 pm

bravo-cards-rio

As seen in the Rio casino poker room. Co-branding with Bravo, the player tracking system in just about every poker room and makers of the Bravo Poker Live App.


OLG smackdown

Auditor General reveals mistakes in lottery corporation's modernization plan

by , May 24, 2014 | 8:22 am

In April of this year, Ontario’s Auditor General, Bonnie Lysyk, released her report on the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation’s Modernization Plan. The report was prepared and made public in response to motions passed by the legislature’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts.

The report is a sobering read for OLG, for the government, and for anyone interested in gaming in Ontario. The report suggests that OLG’s decision-making and plans were unrealistic, short-sighted, and subject to unstable leadership and oversight. The key question coming out of it isn’t, however, what went wrong. It’s where does OLG go from here?

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How to Play Texas Hold’em

by , May 13, 2014 | 3:52 pm

People often teach beginners about Texas Hold’em by explaining the value of the various poker hands. They then move on to discuss the blinds, pre flop, flop, the turn, etc. It can all get quite confusing. BetClic have provided Pokerati with a comprehensive interactive infographic that breaks the game down into its various stages. Have a play with it below if you want to know more. Perhaps you have a friend you’ve been trying to get into Texas Hold’em? This could be a good way to teach them the rules and the phases involved.

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New York’s Efforts to Legalize Online Poker

by , Apr 26, 2014 | 6:26 pm

The New York Senate considered legalizing online poker last year. They withdrew their proposal when they failed to gain support from lawmakers in the State Assembly. However, many senators are still committed to regulating online poker.

Sen. John Bonacic has recently introduced a bill that would allow gaming providers to offer certain types of poker games unlike the NJ online casino games offered by the garden state. Bonacic is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering. He intends to use his position to advocate for more liberal online gambling laws.

The state’s gaming laws list poker as a game of skill, rather than a game of chance. Bonacic’s bill would reclassify online poker as a game of skill, which would make it legal to offer within state borders.

The senator is using precedent from a federal case in 2012 to support his claim. Federal District Court Judge Jack Weinstein ruled that online poker was a game of skill, which meant that it doesn’t violate gaming laws. Weinstein’s ruling was ultimately overturned by the Appeals Court, but the court didn’t dispute his opinion that poker was a game of skill. This precedent gives Bonacic a strong argument that may encourage members of the Assembly to support his law.

Bonacic said that his new bill would help the state generate millions in new taxes. Gaming providers would need to pay $10 million to receive an online gaming license. They would also need to pay a 15% tax on all gaming revenue.

The bill also has a number of safeguards to limit the social risks of online poker. It includes a bad actors clause that would prevent any site that violated the Unlawful Internet Gaming Enforcement Act from offering online poker in New York.

John Pappas, the head of the Poker Player’s Alliance, is encouraged by the new bill. However, he said that the Assembly hasn’t introduced a similar bill, which means that it may be difficult to pass it. Pappas said the gaming community shouldn’t be too optimistic until they see how other lawmakers respond to Bonacic’s proposals.


Video Gaming Economies

by , Apr 21, 2014 | 2:31 am

There’s a fair amount of research going on these days looking at that ever-fine line between gaming and gambling (Gainsbury, Russell, & Hing, 2014). This mini-documentary looks at the size and complexity of virtual gaming economies, and reveals how popular recreational online activities are vulnerable to cheaters and Chinese gold farmers (prisoners made to play video games for prison-guard profits) … which has some wanting regulatory oversight similar to gambling!

Who woulda guessed that online poker could provide a template for gamified digital consumer protections? (Really, it kinda-sorta is …)


Why Online Gaming?

by , Apr 14, 2014 | 5:43 pm

I guess the real question is why not? If we are to move forward in modern technology than accepting the endless possibilities is eminent. Change isn’t always easy for many and sticking to the old fashion ways is to some safe. But sooner or later the rest of society comes around as it becomes more widely accepted and they are feeling a bit left out of the modern new age of advancement.

Bugsy Siegel Puts Las Vegas on the Casino Map

It’s envisioning what appears to be the impossible dream that turns ordinary men and women into legends, changing life as we know it forever. Bringing new ideas to the masses at first can be quite challenging as they are looked at like they have a third eye or two heads. But it takes perseverance to follow through and time to get the recognition that is finally deserved.

Imagine the ridicule Bugsy Siegel took with a brainstorm idea to build a luxurious Casino and hotel in the middle of the desert. Not only did the idea seem insane to build in the heat of the desert with no water supply available at that time, but a Casino? This was in the 1940’s folks and people at that time were not ready for any part of it, after all Casinos were not considered exactly a righteous upscale business.

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Slotto

What Facebook really knows about me, you, us (and our families)

by , Apr 8, 2014 | 10:27 am

Lest you weren’t sure about the relationship between lottery interests and slot machines in future regulated online gambling spaces, here’s a common ad getting served up to some of us on Facebook these days (for myVegas, an MGM joint). You do the math while I continue to get play-money slots game requests from Aunt Rita in Indiana.

myvegasslots

While MGM has to wait (except in New Jersey) for real-money casino (or lottery) play, you can guess they are happy to be running various free point promotions where the prize is ultimately a trip to one of their real brick-and-mortar casinos, where the slot machines may or may not pay out the same way the they did for play money online.