Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Government Conspiracies and NL25 Hegemony

Well that good old US government is trying to get involved in online poker again. The good news is that they aren't trying to ban it this time. The bad news is that they are getting involved again =/ Brief synopsis from what I have read (see 2+2 for more details):

They want to license and regulate the industry but there will be a 15 month "blackout" period during which no Americans can play on any of the sites wishing to get licensed (Stars, Tilt and others). After this, for an indefinite period of probably at least a few years, non-Americans won't be allowed to play on these sites. Heck, some Americans won't either if you live in a state that chooses to opt out.

Hopefully in about 5 years time everybody will get to be happy and play poker together again and the good old times with tons of fish will return. Hopefully is the operative word here. The PPA is supporting this bill because they think its worth taking whatever we can get now after years of fighting for anything. Also, if this bill does not get passed, we probably won't see anything happen for a few years given that the Republicans now control the house. Estimates that I have seen put the bill at between 30-50% (flush draw to coinflip) of passing. Verdict is probably coming by late this week.

I am not in favour of this bill at all. I think it is absolutely terrible for the short term in online poker and I am not convinced that it is good for the long term either. I am absolutely all for government licensing and regulation of the industry, but I'll happily take the status quo over letting a bunch of faceless bureaucrats gut our industry from the inside out and hope that it all works out half a decade from now.

That said, if this thing passes I will have to reevaluate things pretty heavily for next year (I'm Canadian). It probably won't be all bad however. Stars will lose an estimated 1/3 of its traffic. This is a huge blow but not a lethal one. After the blackout is up and I get banned from playing on Stars?...who knows.

Lets end on a positive note. Online poker is still clearly beatable. The graph below is my NL25 full ring results since moving up in mid September. Most of my play was 24 tabling at godawful non peak hours as well. My winrate is 2.16 BB/100. 2.4BB/100 when EV adjusted. I dedicate this graph to every anonymous hater on PTR who said I couldn't beat this level. Hi. Also, redlines are worthless. The green line is the only one that matters.

BlackRain79 NL25BlackRain79 NL25

blackrain79 - micro stakes strategy


  1. You the man. Hey just curious but what has your biggest downswing been at 5NL? I am currently on a 15-20 downswing and just wanted to know what you had experianced since you have played a ton of hands at that limit. Congrats on a pretty graph. Keep on keeping on!

  2. I'm not sure. I remember losing 80 bucks once in a session there with minimal tilt involved lol. That was not typical at all though. But stuff happens. Just make sure you are playing well and I would even table select a bit at that limit.

  3. I knew you'd beat the higher stakes. I give haters on PTR shit for it. A decent grinder is just a decent grinder, whether it be nl 2,5,25 etc.

    Keep grinding, good work.

  4. I always get a bad feeling when the US govt gets involved in anything.I'm from the US and am fine with things just the way they are :-)

  5. Rick,

    Well I got slaughtered today. I'm sure they will have something to talk about now haha. Thanks though.


    Ya I agree. Wish they would just stay out of this industry. While regulation has its benefits, gov't also tend to fuck things up when they get involved. The rake on pokerstars.fr is atrocious for example. The french gov't doesn't know what its doing and its only incredibly soft games that allow for anyone to win at all.

  6. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WkC7onnY-48

  7. J,

    Thanks for that link. Interesting stuff. Puts a lot of the things in this bill, like the blackout, into perspective. Because its seems nonsensical at a first glance.

  8. Freakn blackout ¬¬... I dont even live in the states and Im sweating it so bad. Do you live in the states?

  9. Na I'm in Canada. I don't think anything is going to happen with the bill so its not to worry. Business as usual.