Posts Tagged ‘nat arem’

State of the Poker Union

by , Jan 22, 2009 | 2:55 pm

This has been out for a few weeks now, but I’m reading it for the first time … found via Pauly, who also let us know about John Caldwell’s unexpected-at-this-moment-in-time-but-not-surprising departure as editor in chief of PokerNews. I know most of you don’t really care about “Shecky’s” business, but you should, because he has been instrumental in shaping how you get to follow tournaments on the internet … and though I’ve had my beefs with PN’s claims of being the “independent” source of poker news (they recently changed that to “#1”), overall, PokerNews, under Caldwell’s leadership, developed into something that arguably made the game far more enjoyable for players and their friends … and isn’t that what all of this is about — the pursuit of better poker?

Before he left, Caldwell assembled a panel of informed and influential peeps in the poker world to hear their thoughts on key poker issues. The panel included Bluff editor-in-chief Matt Parvis, big-name agent Brian Balsbaugh, WSOP Commish Jeffrey Pollack, Pauly, PokerDB founder and AP/UB scandal-solver Nat Arem, top-notch tourney director and Commerce Casino poker room honcho Matt Savage, and high-stakes pro and Team PokerStars guy Barry Greenstein and asked them all the following questions:

  1. You’ve been sent back in time to Jan 1, 2003. If you could, what one thing that could be attributed to poker’s “boom” would you prevent or change?
  2. Will we ever again see a regularly occurring, brick-and-mortar cash game that is bigger than the biggest games found online?
  3. Will 2009 bring a formal regulation of online poker at the United States federal level?
  4. What group within the poker world do you believe to be most affected by the global financial crisis?
  5. If you could enact one change to the 2009 WSOP – what would it be?
  6. Compared to the 2008 WSOP Main Event, will there be more or fewer participants in this year’s Main Event, and why?
  7. Will poker grow overall in 2009? If so, what area is likely to show the greatest growth?
  8. If there was one change that you would like to see specifically made to the online game or by major online sites in the coming year, what would it be?
  9. Could a brand new online poker room storm to life in 2009 and somehow capture a major share of that market?
  10. Can you think of something that doesn’t really exist in the poker world today that will be a given five years from now?

WSOP Champ Implicated in Ultimate Bet Superuser Scandal

by , Jul 13, 2008 | 4:00 pm

The UltimateBet Superuser scandal has taken a giant leap into the depths of criminal behavior. If anyone thought the May 29th statement was the end of it, sorry to burst your faith in integrity and good, um, faith.

Nat Arem, the rogue investigator who blew the top off the Absolute Poker scandal, has stepped in to assist with the UB investigation that never seems to end. And the most recent post on his blog, dated today, links some of the superuser accounts on UB to one of the site’s former owners, Russ Hamilton. Yep, that’s 1994 WSOP main event champion, Russ Hamilton. Supposedly, he no longer has a stake in the company, but there are conflicting reports as to his current involvement in UB business.

Here’s a brief excerpt from Arem’s blog:

But it showed that the registered address of at least some of the super user accounts belonged to Russ Hamilton, the former owner of UB.

I basically felt sick to my stomach. I talked to Russ on the phone a few times in the fall — brsavage got me in touch with him. We talked about how disgusting it was that this happened at AP. Russ expressed a strong opinion that he was going to do whatever it took to get things right and, at the time, I believed him that he was going to fight to get things at AP right. He even got me in touch with the guys at AP so I could go down there and meet with them on behalf of PokerNews and the community as a whole. This guy RAILED against the people at AP who were superusing.

Do You Think We Forgot, UltimateBet?

by , May 15, 2008 | 12:44 pm

On March 6, UltimateBet acknowledged that at least one player exhibited an abnormal winning rate on its site. They noted that a third-party audit was in the works, and a complete and thorough investigation was promised.

A few interesting tidbits:

1. UB admitted that it was made aware of the allegations on January 12. They didn’t begin a formal investigation until March 6. It is now May 15, and not a peep has been heard from UB.

2. There are similarities between the UB scandal and the Absolute Poker scandal that stink of more than coincidence.

3. UB has not responded to inquiries on the subject.

A poster on 2+2 broke down the details of the scandal thus far. And Nat Arem posted on PocketFives that he has information that he simply cannot release (???) but assures the public that UB is working on the issue.

Not good enough. It has been too long. UB made the same mistakes as AP – taking too long to admit the problem, resolve it, and communicate with players about it. It is just unacceptable, and I, for one, will continue to publicize the scandal and recommend that players stay far away from Absolute Poker and UltimateBet. (This opinion does not necessarily reflect that of Pokerati.)