The other day someone online called me a shill for the online industry.
Guilty as charged.
But only in this sense.
I don’t give a damn about one site or another. What I am concerned about is our personal freedom to gamble our own money.
Those of us who like to play online aren’t hurting anyone – except perhaps ourselves, in extreme cases.
But those players shouldn’t be gambling anywhere anyhow.
If I want to play online I should be able to.
Let the US government oversee online gambling, collect tax revenue…and make sure that the sites are legit.
And then leave us alone.
But unfortunately, they have not taken that tact. On April 15th, 2011, the Department Of Justice went after PokerStars, Full Tilt and Absolute Poker’s US operations effectively putting an end to online poker Stateside.
PokerScout released an online poker traffic report comparing the weekend before ‘Black Friday’ to the two subsequent weekends.
The results reveal a global decline in online cash poker players of 22%.
PokerStars has seen its cash game players tail off by a massive 28% overall and Full Tilt is currently down 35% while the CEREUS Network, which includes both Absolute Poker and UB have suffered a 65% decline in cash game players over two weekends.
PokerStars and Full Tilt dominated the online poker market.
Currently, there are 24,211 cash players playing on PokerStars and 13,215 at Full Tilt, whereas the third most popular site is iPoker with 4,423 while a lowly fourth is Ongame on just 2,908.
With millions of US players now unable to play poker online and a further 50,000+ US pros currently out of a job, the prospects for online poker in America have never been this bleak.
As Poker Players Alliance executive director John Pappas explains: “The next month is going to be our month to either seize or lose. If we want our game back the PPA and PPA members, and the poker community at large, really needs to activate.”