CardPlayer’s Jeff Shulman to Trash WSOP Bracelet?

by , Jul 15, 2009 | 3:12 pm

Wicked Chops reported today that Jeff Shulman, who is still in the top ten in chips on the final day of the summer WSOP, would throw away the WSOP Main Event bracelet if he happened to win it. Throw away…as in the trash…as in one of the most ridiculous stunts should he actually go through with it.

Shulman reportedly believes the selling of WSOP media rights is unfair and that the coverage now is unacceptable.

That is interesting. Let’s think back for a moment to the time, only two years ago, when the World Poker Tour sold the live tournament reporting rights to, ummm, CardPlayer! And didn’t CardPlayer provide its own mediocre coverage of the WSOP about three years ago? The Shulmans and their poker company seemed to have no aversion to buying exclusive media rights coverage until they were outbid and outdone by other companies.

Throw the bracelet in the trash can? Methinks that says more about the intended thrower than the WSOP.


45 Comments to “CardPlayer’s Jeff Shulman to Trash WSOP Bracelet?”


  1. Kevin Mathers
    says:

    +1 to that Jen, seems a bit selfish too, especially since it would give the magazine a boost.


  2. DanM
    says:

    what’s CardPlayer?


  3. Jon Katkin
    says:

    I’m joining the choir on this one. CardPlayer has consistently shown itself to be all about what’s good for CardPlayer (read, the Shulman’s) and cries like a whiny child when things don’t seem to go their way.

    Jeff Shulman saying he’d throw away the most coveted prize in the game is just one big temper tantrum and shows just how little respect he has for the game he purports to love.


  4. J
    says:

    Seems to me that a truer statement of defiance, generally speaking, is not to participate at all. I believe the kids these days call that a boycott. But then no one would care, would they?

    But to enter a tournament (of any kind), and to then speak or act out against it is nothing short of self-serving and incredibly hypocritical – for one’s endorsement comes with one’s entry.


  5. melissa h
    says:

    i dont agree. i support an open press.

    i dont care how good or badly the shulmans handled themsleves in the past. the bigger issue is that the wsop has lost so many good writers and photogs in recent years that i think jeff is right in spite of his own agenda.

    also as an aside some media wont interview jeff bc he is wearing a competing logo!

    it can be argued that the wsop is an entertainment event and therefore it doesnt warrant the same coverage as a “hard news” event.

    but i dont agree with that. with 8 mil as 1st prize, las vegas as the venue, and over 6k in players there are some amazing stories.
    many of those stories are likely to strike fear in the hearts of the harrahs suits and im sure that they will do whats necessary to prevent anything tainted to get out. like have a closed press.

    in other words make them look bad and you wont be invited back.

    and the photogs? image masters is the only outlet that can shoot at all times. why? bc they also sell the images.

    so maybe jeff is all about sour grapes for his cardplayer, but even if thats true he does raise some serious questions, questions that you as journalists might want to consider.


  6. DanM
    says:

    good point(s), melissa, but it will be much more fun to just hate on jeff because he’s never been nice to any of us, nor his past employees, and because he doesn’t link out. (though they did eventually figure out that video embedding thing.)

    ***also as an aside some media wont interview jeff bc he is wearing a competing logo!***

    it will be very interesting to see how Bluff handles his appearance should he survive. At the same time, while all us “independent” media have our own problems with Bluff, you can bet we’d be cheering on Eric Morris were he in this position. He throws fun parties for people at Sapphire Club.

    ***many of those stories are likely to strike fear in the hearts of the harrahs suits and im sure that they will do whats necessary to prevent anything tainted to get out. like have a closed press.***

    there won’t be a closed press, i bet. trust me … i”ve wanted to hate Harrah’s as an “evil empire” since the beginning … but in the end, though they do spin and occasionally try to trick us, they’ve been quite accommodating within the possibilities of the ESPN TV production.

    ***in other words make them look bad and you wont be invited back.***

    I think Pauly, Wicked Chops, and Pokerati would all respectfully disagree. The WSOP isn’t the WPT, after all.


  7. Kevin Mathers
    says:

    Would it work better if one site handled the bulk of the coverage, and then let the media and poker media cover the ME? It’s hard enough for the media to cover the main event at this point with all the random spectators milling around wanting to see what’s going on.


  8. Kevin Mathers
    says:

    Poker’s the one event where you need to be literally feet from the action to get the best coverage. There can’t be hundreds of media people trying to swarm a table to capture Phil Ivey going all-in at the expense of the cable network filming the coverage.


  9. melissa h
    says:

    yes kevin the logistics are a nightmare.

    but thats a far cry from
    determining whos allowed to cover based on favorable content.
    or worse yet not allowing good journalists back bc they said or did something against harrahs!

    i like the calling of espn a cable network (which it is) just so funny when you put it that way.

    you could use a press pool you could be alloted an amount of time, or just perhaps the press gets most of the upstairs staging area. if that gets too crowded then you make another change.

    it isnt a numbers issue, its a content issue.


  10. melissa h
    says:

    i cant ever hate on jeff. ive had knock down drag outs with cardplayer who i shot for for quite awhile but not jeff.

    individually he is very different person. he is a friend as is his wife.
    but this isnt about my personal opinion of jeff, nor yours (to me) if your theme has been to hate on him well then dont let me spoil your fun.

    that being said ill move on to your whoring yourself out for a skanky nite with the glamourous sapphire girls that bluff pays for! kidding.

    it is a closed press there are many really good writers who wont come back bc at the end of the tourney theyve been told they can no longer have access.

    as for pauly pokerati and wicked chops i think the stuff you talk about is so weird to them they prolly just dont get it!

    but i do believe if someone higher up said didnt like something, or if main stream media picked up a something that you all wrote like about the shutting out of players and started to blow that up
    i think youd get a talking to.

    -m


  11. melissa h
    says:

    btw shout out to change 100 nicky whatever you wanna call her. she was so good tonite on pokernews wow! can you guys pls pass that along for me?


  12. Poker Shrink
    says:

    Mr Shulman has a forum to address all of these issues over the next four months. Here’s hoping that all sides of these issues have open and complete access to be fully heard and discussed.


  13. melissa h
    says:

    RT@Poker Shrink says:
    July 15th, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    Mr Shulman has a forum to address all of these issues over the next four months. Here’s hoping that all sides of these issues have open and complete access to be fully heard and discussed.


  14. DanM
    says:

    Shrink’s points are as usual sometimes, sober, sane, and poignant. CardPlayer should link to what he has to say. ha.

    ***i cant ever hate on jeff. ive had knock down drag outs with cardplayer who i shot for for quite awhile but not jeff.***

    hate may be a strong word. honestly … i don’t have much patience for all this “friend” shit in poker … as much as i promote mine, i also have no problem mocking them when they deserve it.

    what i can tell you is that Shulman was the only one who got booed (slightly) when they introduced the November Nine.

    ***individually he is very different person. he is a friend as is his wife.***
    even kim jong il has friends.


  15. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    I obviously have my own personal issues with Card Player, especially once I learned that they were telling their new employees that I was fired. Absolutely, 100% not true. Card Player was completely shocked when I told them I was leaving, though I gave them a full month’s notice so as not to leave them in a bad spot.

    So yes, I’m biased.

    If Jeff Shulman uses his platform to discuss media access in poker, that’s great. But if he ignores his own company’s role, then he is just being a self-serving bastard.

    If, on the other hand, he discusses the fact that Card Player had the “official” WSOP coverage in 2005 and the “exclusive” WSOP coverage in 2006, and gives some behind-the-scenes info on that (was he displeased with how his company was treated even when they were official?), that would greatly increase his credibility.

    He would also have to address his exclusive relationship with the World Poker Tour in Season VI (2007-2008). Because if he claims to have learned his lesson about exclusive media access from the WSOP, how does he explain the exclusive media deal with the WPT? Card Player was *very* active in shutting out other media outlets from the World Poker Tour — far more interested in that than in actually providing good coverage of the tournaments.


  16. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    Melissa said — “it is a closed press there are many really good writers who wont come back bc at the end of the tourney theyve been told they can no longer have access.”

    BJ says — I haven’t heard anything about this. What poker writers have been shut out of the WSOP? Surely you’re not talking about Bryan Micon.


  17. Kevin Mathers
    says:

    I guess you could throw in Mike Paulle as someone who was extremely frustrated about the exclusivity?


  18. melissa h
    says:

    did i tell you all today how much i love pokerati!

    ok on to the discussion…
    BJ says he has his own personal issues with cardplayer so he is biased.
    i too have issues with them. i was also lied about and treated like shit.
    they are partly responsible for my not being able to shoot at the wsop.
    there are people in that organization that when i see i cross the street to avoid.

    i worked for them when they had exclusive rights and it turned my stomach when a photog came by just to take a pic of a player they were following only to be kicked out. and not in a very nice way.
    i just dont believe in shutting people out.

    i like BJ can tell you stories that are sickening.
    but im trying to direct the conversation in a direction that can improve the community.

    BJ says–If, on the other hand, he discusses the fact that Card Player had the “official” WSOP coverage in 2005 and the “exclusive” WSOP coverage in 2006, and gives some behind-the-scenes info on that (was he displeased with how his company was treated even when they were official?), that would greatly increase his credibility.

    i too would love that to come out. i highly doubt that it will in its entirety. mostly bc to this day i doubt all persons involved have communicated with ea. other about their problems with the arrangement.
    also quite a few of the people involved were either interns and/or were only there for a short time.

    if i re-call correctly barry was the one in charge, he made the deal and he was the one that harrahs dealt with.
    in gossip land i heard that in the end harrahs was annoyed by barry.

    i also saw that bluff had their eyes on having exclusive rights and were actively pursuing it with their ringside radio show. they were smart in that they had alot of the high decision makers on that show.

    when hellmuth won #10 not only were the harrahs higher ups there, they were in big comfy black chairs and talking on the radio!
    i imagine that was very impressive to them. professional and a small environment that was familar to them.

    it was no surprise to me that cardplayer didnt have the deal the following year.
    this by the way is only one of the many things i saw or heard of.

    but still for me this isnt about individual media outlets. its about access for all so that the wsop can get real coverage.

    BJ no im not talking about neverwin. im talking about several writers ive come across over the last few years. 1 for the new yorker who told me he wasnt coming back bc its just too much trouble and he has alot of other good projects. actually ive heard that several times.

    getty photogs arent allowed bc harrahs has their own imagemakers and they want to use them.

    i was denied access this yr to continue work on a book project that ive had going for years. the reason i was given was no books.
    i couldnt shoot for a book? btw i want to add that jeffrey pollack really went to bat for me.

    what this all means which means that if BJ
    wants to publish his AMAZING photos outside of pokerroad he cant do that.

    that to me is the biggest issue. harrahs owns the rights to every image BJ shot this year.

    i realize im biased. over the years ive worked for many outlets just so i could shoot the most wonderful event of the year.
    i know both sides and whether i been the one with the exclusive rights or the one shut out neither have made me feel the right thing was being done.


  19. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    “what this all means which means that if BJ wants to publish his AMAZING photos outside of pokerroad he cant do that.”

    One of the most important things I’ve learned in life is that laws and rules don’t specify what you *can’t* do — they only suggest a punishment if you get caught, prosecuted, and convicted.

    Yes, that’s a glib response, but it’s also very true. There’s a world of difference between being *unable* to do something and being unwilling to accept the consequences.

    I agree that the photography right at the WSOP are painfully bad. I’d love to sit in on the WSOP meetings where they discuss photography privileges to see what kind of information they’re getting on the subject. But I don’t think Jeff Shulman’s disagreement with the WSOP is over photography rights.

    Card Player is allowed to use all the photos they take on their website and in their magazine, and they have more access than they use now anyway. I’d take Shulman’s argument more seriously on this topic if he actually hired a photographer once in a while instead of just sticking a camera in the hands of a tournament reporter.

    “im talking about several writers ive come across over the last few years. 1 for the new yorker who told me he wasnt coming back bc its just too much trouble and he has alot of other good projects.”

    If you’re not writing for a “live” website, I really don’t think you need WSOP media credentials at all. If you’re from the New Yorker, and you want to write an article about Ivey, or Eastgate, or any major player, just contact their agent/manager/sponsor site and set up an interview. If you can’t use your own photographer, just purchase an image or two from Image Masters, or put in a request with them for a specific type of image. (They really are good photographers, even if none of the media outlets ever use their best images.)

    If you’re writing about the specific action, then follow the official live updates, which will give you a better idea of what’s going on anyway. (Especially if you don’t normally follow tournament poker.) If you want to watch some of the action closely yourself, there are plenty of opportunities to do that throughout the WSOP from a spectator’s standpoint — especially final tables, where the stakes are the highest.

    Really, the only two things a WSOP media credential gets you is access inside the rail and access to the media room. I feel that the media room is only really necessary if you’re filing on a tight deadline. (The New Yorker doesn’t strike me as wanting a WSOP article to be submitted the same day.)

    I’m curious as to what, specifically, caused the writer from the New Yorker to turn his or her back on the WSOP. Because I can’t think of *any* obstacles at the WSOP that would keep someone in that position from writing a wide variety of very interesting articles.


  20. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    “i also saw that bluff had their eyes on having exclusive rights and were actively pursuing it with their ringside radio show. they were smart in that they had alot of the high decision makers on that show. when hellmuth won #10 not only were the harrahs higher ups there, they were in big comfy black chairs and talking on the radio! i imagine that was very impressive to them. professional and a small environment that was familar to them. it was no surprise to me that cardplayer didnt have the deal the following year.”

    You describe this as if it was purely political — have the WSOP execs on your radio show and schmooz them to get the rights the next year. But it’s also possible that the WSOP execs were impressed with Bluff’s desire to actually *raise* the level of WSOP coverage rather than do the bare minimum like Card Player did.

    With dozens of good poker writers out there, Card Player hired *zero* of them in 2006. I offered to work for them at scale, just 2-3 weeks before the WSOP, willing to take any job they wanted me to do for them (photography, hand for hand final table coverage, chip counts, whatever) — they quickly and flatly denied, saying they were happy with their team.

    I don’t think Card Player helped their case when they published an article on their own website about their interns — focusing on the fact that a month before the WSOP these kids had never even witnessed a major tournament, and now they were right in the thick of the action. They basically advertised the fact that the people providing their exclusive coverage were completely inexperienced.

    Bluff, on the other hand, contracted the live updates to Poker News, who went out and hired a bunch of the best poker writers/bloggers — some with tournament reporting experience and some without, but all of whom had been writing about poker for years. They complemented those writers with interns, of course, but the overall team was vastly superior to Card Player’s from the year before.

    If Card Player had won the exclusive rights again in 2007, do you think they would have done anything differently, or learned from their mistakes? I don’t.


  21. Me
    says:

    Lets not forget — even “if” CardPlayer wanted to retain the WSOP rights after 2006, they would have been unable to, being that they were not a white listed company for Harrah’s to work with after the UIGEA.


  22. melissa h
    says:

    BJ says:
    You describe this as if it was purely political — have the WSOP execs on your radio show and schmooz them to get the rights the next year. But it’s also possible that the WSOP execs were impressed with Bluff’s desire to actually *raise* the level of WSOP coverage rather than do the bare minimum like Card Player did.

    firstly i said it was smart and professional on bluffs part.
    might i also add im in no way trashing bluff. i like their stlye, but its not abut my personal opinion.

    secondly i 100% agree with you that cardplayer was a disaster. no one suffered more fallout from them than i did. i am in no way defending cardplayer.
    among other badnesses i have over 1k images at CP that “someone” took my name off of my images.
    when CP did the reese issue my images were used (cover and interior) w/o name credit. i later brought that up and was told
    none of my images have my name on the in their databank.

    thirdly and you just made my point for me. bluff tried to raise the bar. and did. bluff raised that bar by being there by having access.
    thats what im lobbying for.

    i find it so incredible that im arguing freedom of the press with journalists but onward.

    as for purely political id just say good old american competition and im for that. i never sat in a meeting of bluffs so i dont have any facts here, just what i observed.
    bluff clearly did a way better job, but they also did a different job. there was/is room for both.

    BJ_
    *With dozens of good poker writers out there, Card Player hired *zero* of them in 2006. I offered to work for them at scale, just 2-3 weeks before the WSOP, willing to take any job they wanted me to do for them (photography, hand for hand final table coverage, chip counts, whatever) — they quickly and flatly denied, saying they were happy with their team.

    again i heard very different stories but also again i think we all agree that the whole experience was miserable.

    BJ-
    *Bluff, on the other hand, contracted the live updates to Poker News, who went out and hired a bunch of the best poker writers/bloggers — some with tournament reporting experience and some without, but all of whom had been writing about poker for years. They complemented those writers with interns, of course, but the overall team was vastly superior to Card Player’s from the year before.

    If Card Player had won the exclusive rights again in 2007, do you think they would have done anything differently, or learned from their mistakes? I don’t.

    so are you advocating CP not be allowed media credentials bc they handled you poorly? bc they didnt hire better writers? bc their content wasnt that exciting?
    i ask this bc im not sure what youre objective is taking this discussion in this direction.


  23. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    At the very least, Card Player had to publish an error correction in the next issue, identifying the photographer of the cover image, at least. If they didn’t do that (the bare minimum), then they are effectively thieves. (And I say this as someone who routinely sees his photos uncredited in Card Player, even though it’s part of the contract with the WPT.)

    Before I go any further, let me say that I’m so happy that Melissa is commenting here at Pokerati. Intelligent and informed commenters are always welcome, *especially* if they have a dissenting opinion. I enjoy it when people pick apart my arguments and force me to focus myself. Melissa kicks ass at that, and always has. 🙂

    I believe in a free and open poker media, and I’ve spoken out on that topic numerous times. What I’m addressing in this thread is Jeff Shulman’s hypocrisy at decrying the closed poker media, when he himself has been a key player in creating that situation.

    I’m not saying that Card Player should lose media credentials because they handled the exclusive rights poorly, but I think it makes Harrah’s decision to go with Bluff/PokerNews the next year a hundred times easier.

    Melissa said — “again i heard very different stories but also again i think we all agree that the whole experience was miserable.”

    BJ says — You heard different stories about me and Card Player in 2006? How freaking paranoid were they that they even bothered talking about me at all?


  24. melissa h
    says:

    BJ*
    One of the most important things I’ve learned in life is that laws and rules don’t specify what you *can’t* do — they only suggest a punishment if you get caught, prosecuted, and convicted.

    Melissah_
    lol! sry, that was glib. while i agree it should be that way clearly youve never met the legal dept in a publishing house or in a photo agency.

    they are more interested in release and rights than content. if you hv property that technically belongs to someone other than you they will not publish w/o release. thats why sometimes you will see a photo credit saying by____ courtesy of____. which means you need a release from harrahs (and prolly pokerroad) to publish. it also could be a bitch fight where both harrahs and pokerroad want credit but harrahs doesnt want to put their name w/PR bc it means their endorsing PR which could conflict with their deal with bluff,who, PAID for media rights, which is why its wrong!

    I agree that the photography right at the WSOP are painfully bad. I’d love to sit in on the WSOP meetings where they discuss photography privileges to see what kind of information they’re getting on the subject. But I don’t think Jeff Shulman’s disagreement with the WSOP is over photography rights.

    yes the photo rights at the wsop are (to say it lightly) painfully bad. can you imagine the kind of content we would have if some of the grt photo-journalists are allowed access?
    i know your a fan of image masters and aside from their having a nicely cornered market on images, most of their content are akin to party pictures.
    i believe the wsop should have and deserves much better imagery.

    BJ-
    If you’re not writing for a “live” website, I really don’t think you need WSOP media credentials at all. If you’re from the New Yorker, and you want to write an article about Ivey, or Eastgate, or any major player, just contact their agent/manager/sponsor site and set up an interview. If you can’t use your own photographer, just purchase an image or two from Image Masters, or put in a request with them for a specific type of image. (They really are good photographers, even if none of the media outlets ever use their best images.)

    Melissah-
    many journalists arent interested in going through a press agent or any agent. they just hang around and try to get a story first hand

    as for the new yorker guy he said that there were so many restrictions he felt that he couldnt write what he wanted.
    i didnt go into it other than that.
    but i think those kind of writers are interested in gathering color and opinions from or people ect.

    btw im not hating on harrahs here or anyone really, just the way the media is currently handled. i think harrahs has done an amazing job creating a huge event.
    everyone knows i have only the highest regard for pollack. to me hes a superstar.
    but when i hear the use of national anthem and only sections of the untied states constitution being embraced i cringe.
    -m


  25. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    Two more points:

    Melissa said — “i too would love that to come out. i highly doubt that it will in its entirety. mostly bc to this day i doubt all persons involved have communicated with ea. other about their problems with the arrangement.”

    BJ says — This was from an earlier comment in this thread, but there’s something here that strikes me as strange. Jeff Shulman has direct access to all persons involved in this process, so why wouldn’t he get the full story before hijacking his own November Nine story with a protest?

    Which leads me to my other point — it’s great that Jeff Shulman finally has a platform to discuss these issues, isn’t it? It’s not like his family owns one of the largest media companies in the poker world.

    Except that his family *does* own one of the largest media companies in the poker world.

    If Jeff Shulman is so upset by these WSOP issues, and willing to risk his own reputation in the November Nine over it, why hasn’t Card Player reported anything about it in the past?

    The upcoming issues of Card Player will be fascinating to me. Will they report on the anti-WSOP comments of their own boss, or ignore them? If they report his comments in full, they risk alienating their casual readers, and if they ignore these comments, they make Jeff look out of touch even within his own company.

    I’m also interested to hear the details of Jeff’s arguments. To this point, I’m only hearing things like “He plans to protest X or Y.” What’s really important is *why* he’s protesting X or Y, and to what purpose. What are his specific problems with the media rights? I think everyone in the poker media has things they’d like to change, but I doubt Jeff’s ideas line up with mine.

    Jeff’s cause is also hurt greatly by the presence of Ivey. If Jeff Shulman were the lone “pro” at the table, he’d get a lot more exposure, and have a stronger argument that he was protesting the WSOP “on behalf of the pros.” But if Ivey goes through the November Nine process without any negative comments about the WSOP, that makes Jeff Shulman look like he is exacting a personal vendetta, not a professional one.

    I think the best course of action for Jeff Shulman and Card Player is to quickly make nice and try to make this entire issue go away. Schedule a meeting with Pollack, tell everyone that the issues were discussed at the highest levels, and brush it under the rug. Then work hard to position yourself as the professional player that fans should root for if Phil Ivey busts out first.

    Every other scenario is a losing proposition for either Jeff Shulman or Card Player Media.


  26. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    Every other scenario is a losing proposition for either Jeff Shulman or Card Player Media — or, more likely, both.


  27. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    Melissa — Publishing houses and photo agencies are soooo 20th century. 🙂


  28. MattWaldron
    says:

    I only have to sit and wonder — after reading all of this — how in the hell I A) got photography and coverage creds and B) how I’m able to ‘publish’ 80% of what I do. Sometimes there is freedom to being with a small site and or freelance content provider, but (as I’ve pointed out slurping a 3pm beer) its good to work for yourself sometimes…no matter what the wages.

    Melissa, I’m not sure if we’ve met but I’ve spent some decent time with BJ and he has alway great to me and anyone else around. Photography tips, rookie guidelines, introductions and even being cool with me picking up work for a licensed title that was his ride. If you are at all on his scale or good side, I really feel for you. Somehow thinking of a full scale company backbiting and slandering photographers and journalist seems…like a waste of energy? Lack of class? Not sure how else to put it.

    I’ve never heard one person speak highly of their time or experience working with Cardplayer…and that includes people that own a piece…so I’ve never tried to contact them about working for them, freelancing with them or providing material in any way. Guess now I’m really glad I have not. I know nothing of ‘Happy’ as a person, but would gladly interview him to get his side of the story. However, I have a good feeling that ANY coverage of this story will only be bad press (if there is such a thing) and is already something that he is thinking of how to spin into a less critical story as he stands to become a star of the show.

    What happens if he, and — dare we say it, but its possible — Ivey decide they aren’t doing the media tours, etc. and we are left with a very humble, media shy old fella’, a Frenchman, a Brit (who is not shy about coverage) and a random collection of internet kids and mid/low level semi-pros? How will this look? What will it do for the sport/event/game that we cover?

    I think it will look a lot like the Hockey strike. Non-fans will scoff at there even being a problem in the first place and belittle a game they know next to nothing about that exists on the margins already. Fans will be various levels of annoyed-to-angry that some individual egos are messing with their sport and take up polarizing sides. In the end, things could get torn apart buy wholly different forces moving in opposite directions, neither with any intention of damaging poker — but it will.

    I watch ESPN’s Sport’s Centern ‘morning show’ style coverage of the results of the WSOP ME this am and I could easily read the smirk in the voice of the announcer who obviously did not care for poker — much less having to stick it at the end of his recycled news feed about a driver on speed and Farve’s comeback-possibility-deadline. What will giving them something like this do to coverage?


  29. MattWaldron
    says:

    I should really read though and edit my posts more carefully. Back to the grind for me.


  30. Tom Schneider
    says:

    I have a different perspective on this whole thing. It reminds me of the old days when women would enter beauty pageants hoping to win and then renounce beauty pageants or to make some other political statement. I didn’t understand that and don’t understand this.

    So many things wrong with this. Imagine playing at Augusta National and winning the Masters green jacket and burning it on the 18th green. Good luck being welcomed anywhere in the golf industry. I guess if you win $8.5 million you wouldn’t careif the poker community shunned you, but wait…is Jeff the only person he would be affecting by this stupid move?

    Is Jeff the only shareholder of Card Player? Is he the only one supporting a family from that magazine? I don’t think so. I believe that Card Player has a few nonfamily shareholders/investors. How would you like the top guy representing your investment saying he is going to throw away the most coveted prize in the sport his magazine is founded upon? I invest my money in you (not me, but an investor), you make $8.5 million then shit on my money? Glad I entrusted you to create value for me. If it were a public company he would get skewered by investors. How about the poor employees of Card Player that have helped them build their magazine? It is obvious he is not thinking about anyone but himself by making this comment.

    Do you think that after tossing away the bracelet on TV that many top pros will say “sure, I want to be put on the cover”? “I would love to be interviewed.” I’m guessing that he thinks that the poker community would jump on board with him if he were to do this…potentially the worst read in poker history.

    However, I will jump on board with him under 3 conditions. 1. He throws the bracelet away on TV. 2. He bans Harrah’s from displaying his picture in the Amazon room as a main event winner. 3. He immediately throws away the $8.5 million in a trash can marked T.S. The trash can will be located outside where the poker kitchen was set up next to a black Nissan Pathfinder with AZ license plates.

    Make me jump on board.


  31. DanM
    says:

    ***I’m guessing that he thinks that the poker community would jump on board with him if he were to do this…potentially the worst read in poker history.***

    … so says the 52nd place finisher, which is only 43 spots out of the Top 9.

    actually, my read on his read is that after years of being beat down on by “fellow” media and the industry as a whole, he just doesn’t give a fuck.


  32. Poker Shrink
    says:

    Updated and expanded comments by Jeff Shulman.

    http://www.cardplayer.com/poker-news/7213-jeff-shulman-says-world-series-of-poker-rumors-miss-mark


  33. MattWaldron
    says:

    I think the CP article the (very awesome) Poker Shrink posted is the spin control I was referring to. He makes valid points in the article, but I really can’t get behind it. Why play and A) pay them the unreal juice B) participate in a ‘ruined’ event C) participate in a contracted agreement with a company you say is the root of all issues.

    I’m with TS on this one.


  34. Kevin Mathers
    says:

    http://www.cardplayer.com/cptv/channels/8-the-scoop/poker-videos/3756-the-scoop-jeff-shulman

    More from Shulman (starting about 13:00 in)


  35. Earl Burton
    says:

    I seriously doubt Shulman will go through with his shtick of “throwing the bracelet away.” He sure as hell won’t trash the money.

    I agree with you, B. J., that Shulman is being a hypocrite over this issue. As you stated, 2005 and 2006 were the most abysmal reporting years of the WSOP (and we don’t have many to sample from). The factor that CP has one of those “exclusive” deals with the WPT only adds to the hypocrisy.

    I remember almost being thrown out of a final table in 2006 because one of the little CP Nazi interns was upset because I was taking notes on a final table for an article I would write later. It was only through Nolan’s help that he was able to convince him I wasn’t violating the “exclusivity” deal.

    In a perfect world, the media would be open and free. If there is money involved, however, someone will soak it up to earn an extra buck. I think that’s what we’ve seen as far as the poker media with the WSOP and the WPT.


  36. Poker Shrink
    says:

    Might I suggest to the demi-gods of Pokerati that an article with many comments might be in order on the topic of: “What would be perfect media coverage of the WSOP?”

    Maybe give it a week for everyone to decompress and arrive back home, but we all know that there are changes that could/would improve access for everyone and provide better information for poker fandome.


  37. melissa h
    says:

    morning gentlepeople!

    i cant figure out how to post on pokerati from my iphone.
    any ideas?


  38. BJ Nemeth
    says:

    Dan has just been made aware of the fact that Pokerati doesn’t allow viewing or posting comments from mobile web browsers, and they are looking into fixing it.


  39. melissa h
    says:

    matt said-

    Melissa, I’m not sure if we’ve met but I’ve spent some decent time with BJ and he has alway great to me and anyone else around. Photography tips, rookie guidelines, introductions and even being cool with me picking up work for a licensed title that was his ride. If you are at all on his scale or good side, I really feel for you. Somehow thinking of a full scale company backbiting and slandering photographers and journalist seems…like a waste of energy? Lack of class? Not sure how else to put it.

    I have known BJ since he first came on the scene. ive encouraged him to only photo from the beginning. i feel his doing anything other (except some writing) is a terrible waste of talent.

    i dont care if on anyones good side others than those in my personal life. what i am discussing here is an open press. if you feel im classless because of my beliefs then i guess im ok with that.

    im not slandering journalists or photogs. i love them and im fighting for them. you may be someone who has access now, but someday if current trends continue you might have to pay to get it.

    but maybe since i dont write very well i havent made myself understood to you.

    earl burton said-
    In a perfect world, the media would be open and free. If there is money involved, however, someone will soak it up to earn an extra buck. I think that’s what we’ve seen as far as the poker media with the WSOP and the WPT.

    currently the wpt is open media


  40. melissa h
    says:

    BJ said-
    I think the best course of action for Jeff Shulman and Card Player is to quickly make nice and try to make this entire issue go away. Schedule a meeting with Pollack, tell everyone that the issues were discussed at the highest levels, and brush it under the rug. Then work hard to position yourself as the professional player that fans should root for if Phil Ivey busts out first.

    ouch! why? why should it be brushed under the rug. the media is unhappy the players are unhappy. that makes no sense to me at all.

    you also asked whats jeffs motivation is…
    he says here
    ““Some people are reporting that I’m upset because the World Series canceled a media deal with Card Player,” he said.

    “My comments have nothing to do with that, and everything to do with my disappointment in how the World Series is run. It used to be run by people who loved and really cared about poker, and had the players in mind, first and foremost. That mission’s been derailed by a few executives who now head the Series.”

    Shulman, who has racked up $1.3 million in lifetime tournament winnings, has played in a number of World Series events in the past decade.

    “This year, the WSOP locked out players who flew in from around the world to play in the main event, charged nearly $3 million in entry fees for the main event alone, continued to create an uneven playing field by giving special treatment to some, and, in general, display bad attitudes and make inaccurate decisions.”

    and then here…
    ““Card Player and the World Series had a media deal in 2005 and 2006. Our opinion was that the event should be open to all media, but the World Series made a decision that only one media company would get access, and that company would have to pay for it.

    “Card Player and the World Series had disagreements on the media coverage from day one, and we chose not to even bid on the deal in 2007. It wasn’t worth it, and they sold it to someone else. We were glad to get rid of it. Shulman is surprised that some in the poker community are so quick to blame Card Player for the trend of establishing media exclusivity in the poker business.”

    “Harrah’s made the decision to auction off the media rights to cover the World Series to the highest bidder, not us. Do we like it? Absolutely not.”

    As for renouncing the bracelet, Shulman says that he stands by this decision, if he is privileged enough to win.

    kevin mathers said-

    http://www.cardplayer.com/cptv/channels/8-the-scoop/poker-videos/3756-the-scoop-jeff-shulman

    More from Shulman (starting about 13:00 in)

    i think he makes himself pretty clear in this interview…

    personally i love happy and as i said before hes a friend as is his wife.
    but i dont feel biased here, i 100% support open media.

    beej what are you doing up? dont you ever sleep?


  41. melissa h
    says:

    Goodnight Walter…R.I.P

    “The ethics of a … responsible journalist is to put his or her biases, his or her prejudices aside in an attempt to be really fair to all sides at all times,” he said. “And my pride is that I think I did that fairly well during my years.”-Walter Cronkite


  42. MattWaldron
    says:

    melissa h,

    So, I guess I don’t write well either. I’m not picking on you or saying anything. Just saying that if you are like BJ, then you did not deserve any mistreatment. CP has done nothing to earn any points with me, don’t misread me there.

    Matt


  43. Tom Schneider
    says:

    Dan will establish iphone capablilites when you pony up the cash.


  44. bluffdiver
    says:

    Yawn.


  45. Seth
    says:

    As usual, it’s more interesting to read the comments on this site than the articles. (Just kidding Dan)

    This is Seth, aka the WSOP Communications Director. Seems quite a few people unhappy with some of the media policies. I am happy to sit down and meet with all of you collectively, individually or otherwise to address any issues you have. I mean this sincerely. This isn’t corporate speak. I’m certainly willing to listen and better understand your concerns and will do my best to explain the rationale on our end or go about improving the areas. As someone involved in sports media throughout my career, I agree there are challenges with poker that I haven’t dealt with elsewhere, simply because it is the only event where the area of play shrinks when the demand expands. Not easy. But two-tiered press box in re-start area, multiple camera and audio of final table area are just a few things we’ve done in the past years to try and bring the action closer to the media. I’m all ears.