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Looking Ahead

Is anyone else out there really getting worried about the future of online poker? As much as I want to devote myself fully into poker again, I think I'm really bummed about the December UIGEA deadline. I hate the fact that the future of online poker seems tethered to the success or failure of online poker in the United States.

Honestly, I don't get it. There are a lot of poker players who don't live in the States. But look at any online site that doesn't allow U.S. players and you'll see the cold, hard truth: U.S. players are vital to poker's economy...especially if you live in a non-European timezone.

I think there's a certain irony in how my desire to play poker relies so much on the future health of the online poker industry. When I sit down to play online, I am a slave to short-term results and variance. Nothing matters more than the here and now. But when I'm deciding how I'd like to spend my precious free time, I take the long-term view on the poker economy's ability to realize further growth down the road. Pretty ridiculous.

If you are reading this and you have anything to say that might make me feel a bit better about the future of online poker, please speak up in the comments. I just ask that you refrain from saying anything along the lines of "get while the getting's good". The last thing I need is the pressure of having to squeeze out as much money from online poker before everything goes belly up.

Maybe I'll just continue to focus on playing poker when I feel like it. It's still just a game and it is fun...when I'm winning. I guess there's little to gain in stressing about this. The States will make up its mind soon enough about how and when it wants to stop everyone from having too much fun.

8 comments:

Memphis MOJO said...

I'm going to take a let's wait and see attitude. Most sites I have around $100. There's one that I have more, and I may take some out, but I want to leave enough to play.

SirFWALGMan said...

Is December really going to have any additional effect past what has been done already?

Wolynski said...

What's the December deadline?

I played online for a couple of years, but stopped when they seized our bankrolls from Neteller.

No online for me now. Unless the poker sites stop everyone from using aids DURING play, like Pokertracker and whatever else they have (bots, semi-bots), I have no interest in playing online. It's up to the sites to police themselves. Analyzing hand histories AFTER play is fine.

So UIGEA did us a favor in a sense.

Klopzi said...

Memphis -

I think most people are of that same attitude. I just find it harder to get excited about poker when I'm not sure if there's a future in it.

I'm not too worried about my online money though. Payment processors shouldn't have any problems with Canadian poker players.

Klopzi said...

Waffles -

It's pretty sad that the industry has already been hurt without the UIGEA really being enforced. I just feel that enforcement will really tighten the flow of new U.S. players. And without drunk college students pumping their parents' money into online poker, I don't see much of a future for slightly-above-average grinders.

As it is, my old 4-5% edge in games has pretty much disappeared due to tougher game conditions and my unwillingness to invest myself into a game that may not be around much longer.

Klopzi said...

Wolynski -

On December 1, 2009, the UIGEA will start being enforced. This means that U.S. online poker players will have a near-impossible time of getting money in and out of online poker sites. Although many players will make do, the flow of new players to online poker could dry up. I'd check out Hard-Boiled Poker - Shamus has done a great job of covering the UIGEA over the past few years.

As for playing aids, I don't really mind as long as those aids are available to anyone. One of the first things I did when I starting playing online poker was to pick up Poker Tracker. I was playing $0.50/$1 limit hold'em at the time but I was well aware of the software's necessity despite the cost. Mind you, when all's said and done, the real value of programs like Poker Tracker comes during post-game analysis. The HUD and on-the-fly numbers do help while playing but many of the numbers are not relevant at the lower stakes games where most regulars either move up in stakes or go broke.

I wouldn't say the UIGEA did anyone a favour. Those who want to play poker still play poker. However, it did make the online games harder. And it has become increasingly difficult for poker-related sites to generate income discussing an incredibly entertaining and interesting game.

I will admit that my views of poker might be different had Neteller seized my funds.

Memphis MOJO said...

"I will admit that my views of poker might be different had Neteller seized my funds."

Neteller did grab my funds, around $800. Fortunately, I finally got it all back, but it was around five month.

Kamera zubehor said...

I have some doubts about online poker. It can be manipulated after all it is machine dependent so its definitely not luck.