Weekly Poker Roundup: January 23, 2016
PokerStars Will Want to Peer Into Your Soul Next
PokerStars seems to be taking a somewhat unprecedented step in attempting to enforce its stricter rules against many third-party software applications, as it has allegedly sent an e-mail to a select number of high stakes players requesting that they submit video evidence of their poker play.
The e-mail was very specific with the instructions, requiring the player to show their face at the beginning of the video as well as their surroundings. The session being recorded must be at least 70 minutes and all activities taking place on the computer must be able to be seen. The monitor, keyboard, mouse, and the player’s hands must all be visible in the video.
It appears that the purpose of the video is so that PokerStars can compare how the player plays in that session versus others; the assumption is that if a player is regularly using a bot or other forbidden third-party software, their playing style without it on the video would be noticeably different.
Washington State Reps. Introduce Online Poker Bill
Washington State Representatives Sherry Appleton and Vincent Buys have reintroduced Rep. Appleton’s House Bill 1114, a bill which would legalize and regulate online poker in the state. The bill actually allows people who are at least 18-years old play online poker, as opposed to the 21-year age limit prescribed by most other bills or regulations around the country.
Washington is infamous in U.S. internet gambling history as the state that not only outlawed online poker in 2006, but made PLAYING online poker a crime equivalent to that of child pornography. The charge to make online poker illegal was led by State Senator Margarita Prentice on behalf of Washington’s tribes and card rooms, who were afraid of the possible competition to their businesses that poker sites might offer.
Besides the fact that it was strange to have online gambling qualify as a Class C felony, what was also odd about the Washington situation was that Prentice had so much animosity towards poker players. In an ESPN.com article from 2010, after PokerStars finally closed to players in the state, Prentice laughed at professional players upset about either having to move or give up their careers, saying, “I just think some of these arguments are utter nonsense. You mean you’re going to move so you can play poker? Gee, lots of luck in your life. … I have nothing against card playing. That’s fine. If you want to do that, but I’m sure not going to worry about someone … you know. Let them go pump gas.”
Nominations Open for Women in Poker Hall of Fame
The last time the Women in Poker Hall of Fame inducted any new members was 2013. Three years later, it is time to give it a go once again. The Hall of Fame is now accepting nominations of deserving candidates from the public. Up to two nominees can be named per e-mail address, up from one in previous years.
The Hall of Fame has listed a number of criteria for eligibility:
- A candidate must have been active as a player or industry leader for a minimum of 10 years prior to election and 35 yrs of age or older.
- Player/industry leader must have contributed to the world of poker in some significant way. This person can qualify by either winning major poker tournaments, or by making significant contributions to the industry of poker.
- Player/industry leader must be a proponent of women in poker.
- All nominees must be approved by a committee of the Board of Directors and the Inductees.
- Nominees must agree to terms & conditions of the Women in Poker Hall of Fame.
The inaugural Women in Poker Hall of Fame class was inducted in 2008 and included Barbara Enright, Linda Johnson, Marsha Waggoner, and Susie Isaacs. Since subsequent inductees have been Cyndi Violette, Jennifer Harman, Kathy Liebert, Kristy Gazes, J.J. Liu, Allyn Jaffrey Shulman, Phyllis Caro, Kathy Raymond, and Deborah Giardina.
She’ll See Your Bet and Raise You a Human Baby
In one of the oddest examples of funny timing in poker history, Katrina Sheary survived the opening flight of the $1,150 No-Limit Hold’em event at the Aussie Millions. After going home to await her turn for Day 2 (word is she played in an early flight so had a day off), she went into labor. So, that’s it for her tournament, right? After all, she wasn’t about to go back to the casino a day after giving birth to keep playing.
No, she did not continue playing, but tournament officials made a rather unprecedented decision and allowed her husband, Peter, to take over her stack and finish the tournament. He finished in 25th place, winning AUD $6,495.
The natural question that came up was, of course, if this was permissible. It seems that it was. According to the tournament’s Terms & Conditions, the Tournament Director may use his discretion to transfer an entry and related chips to somebody else, as long as that substitute player was eligible to play and had not already played in the tournament.
Of course, one might question if it was wise for Sheary to play in the tournament at the end of her pregnancy, but at the same time, she might not have expected the baby to come along on that specific day. She probably thought she had a few more days (though there is no report that states the baby was unusually premature or anything). Then there is the decision of the father to leave his family’s side and continue, but then again, if you have a chance to earn some good diaper money, might as well take it. Babies are expensive.
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