Disappointing Year for Internet Poker Legislation

December 31, 2012

Poker Players Alliance’s Executive Director, John Pappas summed up the advancements of the internet poker legislation in the US as “disappointing”. Pappas referred in specific to the internet poker bill proposed by Sen. Harry Reid, which could not be passed in the Congress lame duck session on December 28. This decision has essentially dashed the hopes of all the online poker players in the US, who wanted a licensed and regulated online poker market in the country this year.

What does John Pappas have to say?

John Pappas said that he was highly disappointed with the proceedings regarding the internet poker bill in the US. Though incredible advancements were made in context of the bill, nothing concrete happened, he added. He said that he sympathizes with the poker players, who have been trying their best to convince the Congress to pass this online poker bill which protects their freedom and also raises the revenue. However, John Pappas feels that the voices of the players have not fallen on the deaf ears. He said that he feels discouraged that the Congress couldn’t come up with a solution to the current fiscal crisis through poker.

The situation in the US

People who supported Reid’s efforts feel that the US must have passed the legislation through the Congress before any kind of progress is made by the individual states. The supporters feel that if individual states form laws on their own for intrastate internet gambling and poker, it will however, be very tough to create suitable standard of gaming across the gambling board. On the other hand, Nevada has started issuing internet poker licenses. The websites are predicted to operate from early 2013. David Krone, who is Harry Reid’s chief staff, said that Reid would push this bill again in 2013; but his enthusiasm seems to have dimmed slightly. However, none of them are confident about the bill getting passed even in 2013.

On the other hand, regulating online poker is not really an obstacle according to the Chairman of Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission (IRGC). The politicians at Iowa might soon be reconsidering their decision of licensing internet poker for the residents of Hawkeye State. The regulators at Iowa want to make it very clear that they are ready for the task. The head of the gaming commission at Iowa confirmed the news on December 28.

Slippery situation in Iowa

According to the reports by RadioIowa, IRGC’s Chairman, Jeff Lamberti said that if the legislators of Iowa decide to carry on with internet poker, even his department is ready for it. Lamberti said that online poker is the very next step, when it comes to the progress of gaming. Many states are approving it and have started moving in the same direction, he added.

Online poker was not legalized when it was brought in front of the very conservative Republic State House. This bill, which called for Iowa intrastate internet poker network, would function in unison with approximately twenty land-based casinos in the state. A similar effort involving casino operators is currently being pushed for legislation. Iowa Gaming Association’s Executive Director, Wes Ehrecke, said that online poker should be offered by casinos on platforms licensed by Iowa’s Gaming and Racing Commission. The officials will also make sure that minors are kept out of these portals.

However, there hasn’t been any timetable set for the reintroduction of Iowa internet poker bill which will face questionable prospects in case it reaches Governor Terry Branstad’s desk. Branstad was, however, doubtful about the merits of the poker bill.

Poker bill passed in California

Iowa and the other states in the US are doubtful about the internet poker legislation; the Senator in California has reintroduced the internet poker bill. Roderick Wright, California’s Senator has passed the bill, which will legalize intrastate internet poker with real money gambling. The bill was introduced in the last week of December and there haven’t been hearings regarding the bill until now. The proceedings will continue on January 7. The bill is under the “urgency statute”, meaning that it will take effect as soon as it is passed by the majority vote. However, the bill is expected to take effect only in March 2013.

Poker Promotions for Christmas and New Year

December 25, 2012

Now that it’s the festive season and celebrations are on for the New Year, most poker sites are offering exciting promotions to their players. Sites like William Hill and Poker770 have come up with amazing bonuses and promotions for their poker players. Want to earn $50 just like that? Why not earn an additional $20? Just make your initial deposit onto the gaming account at Poker770, and the Cash Machine promotion launched by the site can help you win more and more money in no time.

What is the Cash Machine promotion all about?

Poker770 has reintroduced its very popular promotion – Cash Machine. It has started from December 24 and will go on till December 30, from 19:00 to 21:00 GMT. This will give all the poker players another week to earn $70 free cash. You can just start off by downloading Poker770 onto your computer by logging into your gaming account. Then make the deposit, and it will be matched 100 percent with a maximum of $20 as cash bonus.

You can even take the advantage of Poker 770’s long-running $50 bankroll promotion. This promotion will give you the opportunity to win free money up to $70. To enjoy this promotion, you can just download Poker770 using PokerNews and enter bonus code “news50uk”. Just submit all the required details by filling out the form. Once you do this, additional $25 will be credited into your gaming account immediately. Once this is done, you just have to earn a Poker770 point within sixty days after receiving the bonus.

How to earn money on this promotion

To earn an additional $25, you just have to get 500 points within 120 days. This promotion is open for players from the UK, Switzerland, Andorra, Brazil, Austria, Australia, Canada, Greece, Iceland, Holland, Germany, Luxembourg, Spain, Portugal, and New Zealand. If you stay in Venezuela, Ukraine, Africa, Slovenia, Serbia, Poland, Paraguay, Montenegro, Macedonia, Latvia, Japan, Hungary, Estonia, Czech Republic, China, Chile, Belarus, and Argentina, you will find that the rules of the promotion are quite different.

If you are a resident of any of these countries, the free $50 is divided into three portions rather than two. Firstly, $10 will be credited to your gaming account once you register. Later, another $20 is credited to your account once you earn 500 points. Finally, $20 is credited after you earn another 500 poker points by 120 days. Once this is done, make deposits during the promotion named Cash Machine and you will get 100 percent matched bonus that is up to 20 dollars. This means that you can earn a maximum of $70 just for free by playing at Poker770.

William Hill promotion

Another poker site that is attracting more and more people with its Christmas and New Year promotion is William Hill. The poker site’s $10,000 Double-Up Sit ‘N’ Go Madness promotion has become highly popular among poker players. The promotion will end on January 10, 2013. If you love playing poker, do not miss an opportunity to get your winnings of $10,000 in cash. William Hill and Poker News have partnered to provide you with this new promotion. The promotion is going on now and will offer players with a cash prize worth $10,000.

This promotion is focused mainly on the very popular internet poker formats called Double-Up Sit N Go’s. Each time you play this Double-Up game, you will be able to earn points whenever you finish. Just try to earn the maximum number of points during this promotional period. You can then occupy a position among the top 100 players and earn cash. The $10,000 promotion is just available to players registering at the William Hill Casino through Poker News.

New kind of welcome bonus

Aside from the cash prizes, new players can even get an exciting welcome bonus. Just enter “NEWSCOM” as the bonus code and you can stand a chance for the 200% match on a maximum initial deposit of $2000. If you deposit $100, the poker site will credit $200 into your gaming account. After this, if you deposit $500, you will be awarded with $1,000 onto your gaming account. You will have to put in $1000 if you want to earn the maximum bonus of $2,000.

This promotion is open only for players who register at William Hill through any PokerNews group of firms. The firm you choose should be tagged to PokerNews to take part in the promotion. Only the winners from six player, ten player, and four player tournaments are eligible for the leaderboard points. You can play this promotion till January 10, 2013 at 23:59 GMT.

Though it is very rare, a tie can happen. During such a situation, the player who plays the maximum number of tournaments will be the winner. For instance, you need to have 1000 points from hundred games and your opponent should earn 1000 points from 90 games. During this situation, you will be declared the winner since you have played 100 games.

Other promotions at William Hill

The poker site is offering lots of cash prizes and games. You can play your favorite games from December 26 through January 4 for the Ten Days of Christmas promotion. All you should do is bet on your favorite poker game and win free bets, bonuses, and cash prizes. You can win all the three prizes by just collecting the required points on each day. To qualify for this promotion, you should have gained the necessary points prior to the bonus round.

Along with cash prizes, William Hill Poker is giving away Christmas freerolls in December. Each freeroll is worth $5,000 and you can just boost your bankroll by just taking advantage of this promotion. To play for this promotion, you just have to get 25 points on each day. You can play the Christmas freeroll from December 14 to December 26. Tickets for the freerolls were given away on December 13. However, on December 27, players will get another opportunity to purchase the tickets and become eligible for the $5,000 freerolls.

Paris to Host WSOP 2013

December 17, 2012

After two successful and eventful years in Cannes, Europe’s World Series of Poker tournament will move to Paris in the year 2013. The officials of the WSOP declared on December 17 that the WSOP Europe 2013 would be held from October 11 to October 24 at the most historic and oldest casino in France, which is the Casino Barrière Enghien-les-Bains. This casino is located very close to the capital city of France.

Where will the WSOP 2013 be held?

The newly reconstructed management of Casino Barrière Enghien-les-Bains will organize the tournament in a single room. The Enghien-les-Bains is basically a very wealthy suburb in Paris. It has a train station of its own and is just a ten-minute travel from the North Station (Gare du Nord). The North Station links to the metro service station in Paris and also has trains going to the UK, Germany, Netherlands, and Belgium.

The Casino Barrière Enghien-les-Bains will also arrange for a theatre with 500 seats to host the final tables along with television production. The officials at the WSOP said that the place where the tournament will be arranged is the most conducive and comfortable setup for the poker players in the history of WSOP.

What does the WSOP have to say?

The Executive Director of WSOP, Ty Stewart said that the main aim of the WSOP is to blend exciting gaming experience and poker. He also said that the tournament would expose the poker players to Europe’s various exciting destinations. The Barrière casino has made sure that the facilities for the tournament are just amazing. There are almost 12 million Parisians who are trying their best to prevent Phillipe Hellmuth from winning another French bracelet. 

The dates of the WSOP 2013 tournament are scheduled such that it does not affect players who are traveling. It will also have qualifiers planned along with good TV coverage.

Schedule of the tournament

Though the schedule of the WSOP 2013 tournament is not yet announced, the WSOP is expecting to provide seven gold bracelet events and a High Roller tournament. The tournament will also include several cash games and satellites. The WSOP Europe tournament was held in London for four years before it moved to Cannes last year. This year, the WSOP series saw Hellmuth winning the main tournament, which is his 13th bracelet. Other winners of the WSOP tournament in Cannes included Giovanni Rasadoni, Francisco Da Costa Santos, Imed Ben Mahmoud, Roger Hairabedian, jonathan Aguiar, and Antonio Esfandiari.

The organization of the tournament

The organizers of the poker tournament want exactly the same thing as the players. They want to draw maximum prizes and biggest field sizes. While planning for the event, the organizers will give a lot of importance to travel, optimal dates, and populated feeder market. When it comes to the venue of the WSOP Europe 2013 tournament, the organizers feel that the one chosen is the best. The whole Barrière casino will be decorated and devoted to the game of poker. Every room will have poker games going on from October 11. All the tournament tables will happen on just one floor.

The WSOP is planning to expand its “Wild Card Weekend” series through the official network. But, as of now, the organization is happy with France since it is thrilled with the Barrière partnership. The casino is the host of this entire WSOP tournament, and the officials of the casino have displayed immense trust on the WSOP tournament’s vision. The officials at the WSOP feel that the Barrière casino will attract at least 150 French players for the main event of the tournament.

When it comes to the bracelet schedule, the WSOP has not said anything. The officials are still discussing the final schedule of the bracelet. As of now, they feel very good to find diversity in the poker players. The main aim of WSOP is to increase the number of players and the prize money for each and every tournament table. The tournament is believed to end with the No Limit Hold’em Main Event. This event will have an entry fee of 10,000 Euros. The officials of the tournament hope that the venue of the WSOP event in Paris will boost the attendance of players. 

Enjoy Freerolls From PokerStars this Christmas!

December 10, 2012

PokerStars and PokerNews have come up with an exciting deal for all their players. If you are a player at either of these sites, then do not miss this opportunity to win the $22,500 freeroll. PokerStars and PokerNews have partnered once again to provide amazing promotions for all their players. This $22,500 freeroll is scheduled on Jan 7, 2013 at 14:00ET and will also provide a prize pool worth $22,500.

Who is eligible for the freeroll option?

This freeroll option is available only to customers who have registered themselves on PokerStars using the marketing codes and links. New customers entering the marketing code as “POKERNEWS.COM”, while signing up for their PokerStars account, should ensure that they make their first deposit into their PokerStars account between December 1 and December 31. These players should earn only 100 VPPs so that they are eligible to play for the $22,500 freeroll.

Players who already have a gaming account with PokerStars, created through PokerNews, can enjoy the benefits of the ongoing promotions at the site. There are joint pools of $500,000, which can be won by the players. They will also get a chance to play for the $22,500 freeroll by making 100 VPPs within December 31. Playing for the $22,500 freeroll is as simple as that. This huge prize pool will be given away based on the regular payout structure of PokerStars.

If you are playing for this exciting freeroll, ensure that you keep yourself free on January 7. Do not miss out on your opportunity to boost your bankroll for the New Year. Players, who register for their PokerStars account using the marketing codes by PokerNews, will also be allowed to participate in the other exclusive promotions offered by PokerStars.

Other exciting promotions offered by PokerStars

Aside from the $22,500 freeroll, PokerStars is giving away additional PCA (PokerStars Caribbean Adventure) packages along with the 100 packages for $10. This free-to-play promotion takes place daily for ten minutes. The weekly finals for this promotion took place from November 11 to December 9. Players were awarded with PCA packages. Every PCA freeroll game has a maximum of 20,000 players. Every player is given a chance to exchange his seat for $5000 in cash if he wins the finals.

What is the PCA all about?

Players can take advantage of the $10 weekly ticket when they make deposits to their account with PokerStars. Using the “PCA600” bonus code, players can win more money. Before PCA, poker was not played in Bahamas. This event brought the game of poker to limelight and since 2004, the PCA event is one where all players show their willingness to play. With big player fields, this 2013 event is going to be very special as it marks the 10th Anniversary of the PCA. To participate in this event, players have to just deposit $10. Celebrating its tenth anniversary next year, the PCA has several surprises in store for the players.

100K deposit freerolls

Aside from the PCA promotion and the $22,500 promotion, PokerStars also offers the 100K deposit freerolls. This promotion will provide you with a good value on your deposit. Just deposit cash into your gaming account and get a chance to enter the $1,000 freerolls each day for a period of 31 days. This will be over $100,000 in the free tournament value. 

In this promotion, there is no limit on the number of freerolls you will be able to play before the expiry of your ticket. This means that players can play over 124 tourneys. Aside from this, in case you are depositing for the first time, use “STARS600’ bonus code to be eligible for the 100 percent welcome bonus, where you can win a maximum of $600.

This $1,000 freeroll promotion uses a unique freebuy format, where the entry for playing the promotion is free. However, you will be able to re-buy a maximum of three times and spend just $0.30 for every re-buy. It is important to remember that you should re-buy within the first hour of the promotion. This option will boost your prize pool every time. This is the biggest freeroll series that PokerStars has provided to its players.

Online Poker to Cause Mere Dent in Fiscal Cliff

December 3, 2012

The fiscal cliff, which will possibly lead to increase in taxes once the laws change, has been a debatable topic for the past few weeks. Ever since the exhilaration of the presidential election died down, the fiscal cliff and its effects on the next year is being discussed at length. In midst of this debate, the legalization of online poker has also been considered to reduce the fiscal cliff. However, experts claim that, although the possibility sounds plausible, it will not be a long-term solution.

Considerable Online Gambling Revenue Lost to Other Countries

One of the main issues that are emerging is the fact that the US is losing out on a significant amount of revenue due to an absence of an internet poker bill. More than $3.5 billion in a year is being wagered on poker sites across the world. There are several estimates that have put the figure close to $11 billion. However, financial consultants are of the opinion that this is a trivial figure when compared to the multi-trillion dollar debt faced by the US government.

The state of Nevada, also known as the casino capital of the world, has gone pro-active wherein its Gaming Commission is busy sanctioning internet poker licenses to reputed gaming companies. Some of them are Bally Technologies, International Game Technology, Boyd Gaming and South Point Poker. Although the companies are keen to offer online real money poker services, they would prefer that a federal internet poker bill is first instated in the country. The US state is undaunted by the fact that these licenses will not have any value if the online poker bill is not put into effect.

The online gambling industry is counting on the Nevada senator and sponsor of the bill, Harry Reid, to push the bill during the interim. At present, the only internet gambling bill existing in the Congress is the one proposed by Joe Barton. The Reid-Heller bill is yet to be introduced. The delay was primarily caused by scattered interests and later on the presidential elections. Although Reid is expected to give the bill the attention that it deserves, the senator has been honest in his admission that other matters, predominantly the fiscal cliff, will take priority in the 2013 session.

Touted Figures of Online Poker Revenue will be Insufficient; Pressure on Obama Administration

According to the estimate, an average of $50 billion can be earned over a decade by legalizing online poker in the US. What most people are unaware of is that this revenue will be subject to taxes. Corporate taxes will cut the revenue in half which will hardly be enough to save the US economy.

At present, it is only Nevada that has forged ahead; Industry experts say it is only a matter of time before the other states follow. Delaware is in the process of setting up a commission to accept licenses. While California was hyped to be one of the US states to offer internet gambling, efforts have died down. The point is that the Obama administration and the Congress will be under pressure to enforce a federal online poker bill once these states commence internet real money poker operations.

Although claims have been made that the legalization of online poker would only cause a mere dimple in the fiscal cliff, several sources have opined that it is one of the only possibilities at the moment. After the primary revenue generated from the licensing, the projected subsequent revenue will be a measly amount.

The online gambling industry is, however, waiting with baited breath to see whether there will be a last-ditch effort by Senator Reid to introduce the internet poker legislation in the lame-duck session. Sources say that the poker bill is one of the least important issues in the Congress today.

Internet Poker Bill Downplayed by Nevada Senators

In an effort to prepare the online gambling industry, Senators Jon Kyl, another sponsor of the bill, and Harry Reid have been downplaying the chances of the internet gambling bill in the past few weeks. Although Reid believes that the bill would result in a significant return of investment, which would not only benefit Nevada, but the country, there are few who would see it that way.

Supporters for the bill have argued that the legislation would result in innumerable job opportunities in the states that choose to offer real money internet gambling services. Critics, on the hand, have vehemently stated the threat to the country’s cyber-space as the primary issue.

Another issue raised was the possible increase in the number of gambling addictions and underage gambling if the bill is introduced and approved. Land-based casino owners and Indian tribes have long opposed the bill as it will adversely affect their businesses. The fiscal cliff, sources say, is another opportunity to garner attention for the online poker bill that seems to be dying a slow death.