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Posts Tagged ‘Video Poker’

Online Poker History – The Story Behind The Sensational Hit

Online poker is defined as the type of the poker game played in the internet by either one person or a number of participants. The ease of accessibility is what has made on-line poker very popular because of its appealing nature that has seen many people turn to it as a major form of entertainment. It is estimated that in 2003 alone almost USD$ 35 million was collected in monthly revenue from on-line poker alone.

The game of poker has been going for many years, but the history of online poker – along with most other online games – is relatively short. Yet despite the relatively short length of the history of the game, it is an extremely rapid developing part of the entire online gambling industry which is not showing any signs of slowing down. While it is very popular in America, Europe is fast catching up too.

The history of online poker begins with the history of poker in general. The game of poker has been around for thousands of years with origins all over the world, from China to France to Persia and Spain. However, it wasn’t until 1834 that the game of Poker with the name of “Poker” was officially recorded. Jonathan H. Green wrote about “the cheating game” which was played on Mississippi riverboats. This game was played with only twenty cards, but evolved into modern day poker.

Online poker only dates back 9 years, to 1998 which was when the first games came on line. But the real milestone for the history of poker was 2002. A year later when the World Poker Tour was launched on America’s travel channel in March, poker really hit off. This was also true for when the World Series of Poker (WSOP) had its largest turn out over.

These events and others certainly contributed to the developing growth of the history of poker as more and more individuals found out about how fun the game was to play on line, and indeed, how lucrative it could be, especially when playing online poker tournaments. 2004 and 2005 saw a huge influx of additional online poker rooms and sites, many of which appealed to the masses, even the non-poker playing ones who started to show an interest in this new and exciting online game.
Poker is a game that is coordinated by gambling laws and regulations and is mainly played in casinos and card rooms. However, it has recently become available for play in online poker rooms. The introduction of poker to the Online has increased the popularity of the game a huge amount, but it didn’t start out so simply.

The history of online poker began in 1998, when the first online poker room was opened. Planetpoker.com was the first website in the history of online poker and as the first it had many obstacles to overcome. One of the main problems was trust-after all they had to build peoples’ trust in order to get them to play with real money on their site. They also had to work out software that would be user friendly and realistic. However, once they worked out these problems it was a smooth ride.

Probably one of the reasons the history of online poker developed so well was because of how enthusiastic poker professionals have been since the game’s inception on line. Such big names as Chris “Jesus” Ferguson, Howard Lederer, Phil Ivey, Erik Seidel, John Juanda, Phil Gordon, Andy Bloch, and Erick Lindgren are included in this list.

The history is now definitely well on the map, especially financially as the industry in America has reached over $2 billion. There are so many poker rooms today on line that pretty much at any time, 24/7, one is able to find a poker game of their choice. Whether you love 3 card poker, video poker, Texas Hold’em Poker, 7 card stud poker, 5 card draw poker, Omaha Hi-Lo poker, to name but a few, on line players will probably be able to find a game to satisfy and appeal.

Many online poker sites offer now offer numerous features that attract and appeal to new players. This new features are what are making raves in the world series of poker because the world of poker has now wakened to the realization that even on-line poker participants can also have a shot at the big game.

One similar feature offered by the online poker sites is the tournament referred to as “satellite”. This feature allows participants to gain actual access to real live poker tournaments. In a similar tournament Chris Moneymaker emerged the victor and was able to participate in the World Series of Poker in 2003. his victory shocked the whole world.

Recent figures have in fact projected that the revenue generated by on-line poker could reach as high as US$ 100 million target in 2005, and that online participants are estimated to reach 100,000 people.

Inside Gaming: Harrah’s Goes Hollywood, UK Payment Processor Anticipates Change in U.S. Regulations, and More
While you’ve been doing work at the poker tables, others have been busy at the boardroom table. Good thing PokerNews is skilled at multitabling. Every Friday, we’ll get you up to speed on what’s new in the gaming business.

PartyPoker Premier League IV Playoffs: Day 3
British poker pro Ian Frazer was the last man standing after three tough days of PartyPoker Premier League Playoffs. Frazer defeated Mike Sexton and four other members of Team PartyPoker to earn a $100,000 seat in the elite Premier League IV Main…

Grading the South Carolina poker legalization hearing

Grading the South Carolina poker legalization hearing
I showed up early for Monday’s South Carolina Senate subcommittee hearing. Up for debate and public input were two bills that would effectively make legal home poker games and charitable raffles. South Carolina is one of two states in the country that bars raffles (thanks to Utah for making us seem less antiquated and ridiculous). The Palmetto State also makes any game with cards or dice illegal (read: poker, Monopoly, bridge) etc. With that in mind, you might expect the decriminalization hearing on the 200 year old law to be ridiculous. You would be right, you just don’t know how right you are. By the end of it, I was so frustrated I couldn’t even speak clearly. So, after the jump, I grade the major players’ effectiveness (Note: this is for more than South Carolina poker players, as the national Poker Players Alliance had big role in the hearing). Poker Players Alliance: The PPA, the most legitimate of all the poker advocacy groups in America, has spent a great deal of time and effort in South Carolina recently. It supported the Mt. Pleasant Five in a February trial (see your April issue of Bluff Magazine for my article on the subject) and has been exceptionally vocal about legislative efforts here. The PPA surprised me by pulling on board one the state’s most respected legal minds. Billy Wilkins, former chief judge of the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, spoke on behalf of the PPA. While Wilkins could’ve been briefed a little better on the subject matter, he was expectedly well-spoken. It was was a coup for poker players to have Wilkins on their side. I would never have guessed the poker industry could’ve pulled such a big name from the local pool. The PPA also did a great job of rallying the troops to the meeting. Its online outreach was hard to miss. All of that said, the PPA still has some issues it need to address if it wants to be a serious force. It could have done a much better job lining up and briefing people who planned to testify. One of the better parts of organizing grass roots efforts like this is making sure your people are all on the same page and are well-educated on the subject matter. The PPA needs people who know how to do more than send out e-mails. It needs to be pushing hard in the media, rallying larger groups of people, and educating the masses. A media campaign couldn’t hurt either. Finally, the PPA’s social media strategy was either badly conceived or badly executed. Here are a few examples of the Twitter messages sent out to more than 1,200 Twitter followers during the meeting. “at the Greenville NC poker hearing which just started.” “Greenville, opposition just said that no one has every been arrested for playn poker n SC! Read the paper much?” “Greenville, opposition sweating bullets right now.” “opposition doesn’t support charities that save lives w/ funds received from raffles.” “opposition does not support the burn center thats supported by charity events.” “Franky’s Fun Park is full of games of skill not chance! LOL” “opposition doesn’t support personal responsibility. ” “opp doesn’t support Sheriners.” “looks like were rapping up.” There were a ton more like that. From misstating where we were geopgraphically, to rampant spelling mistakes, to out-of-context immaturity, the Twitter feed was embarrassing. I couldn’t figure out who was sending the messages. He might be a really good guy, but he needs a better understanding of both social media and reasonable, mature ways to win hearts and minds. If the Twitter feed was the PPA’s only voice, I would not associate myself with the group. Said B.J. Nemeth, top poker writer, “These tweets sound absurd. You’re making it sound like anti-poker people hate children, charities, and puppies. Clearly untrue.” The PPA has come a long way recently and I still wholeheartedly support the group’s mission. It’s clearly on the right track. It just needs some good counsel on how to handle some of its outeach efforts. Grade: B- A few poker and raffle proponents, including your humble correspondent in the background and on the edge of a mental breakdown The legislators: Several legislators from around South Carolina came to Greenville. It started about as badly as you might expect. Committee Chairman Robert Ford is from the Low Country. He likes to party and is a laid back guy. He’s obviously from the coast. The problem is that his brand of humor doesn’t play here. He knew coming into the Upstate that he was going to be facing a very conservative crowd. Rather than respect it, Ford started the meeting by saying, “I guess since we’re in Greenville, we need to start with a short prayer. We didn’t do that in Charleston.” There is no greater way to tick off a group of praying people than saying, “I guess we’ll do it since we’re in your house, but we wouldn’t do it we were home.” Ford is a fun guy, but he is not one to sway hearts and minds. He seemed more intent on debating that convincing. Bad play, sir. Senator Jake Knotts, a retired cop from Lexington County (around the state capital), is no better. While obviously being in favor of the bill, he spent more than half his time arguing on tangential subjects such as whether the stock market was gambling and whether a local arcade contains games of chance or skill. He also left before the hearing was over (I know, because I left two and half hours into it and he was ahead of me in the parking lot). Knotts is a fierce advocate for whatever he believes in. Sadly, most of the time he throws a punch, he misses his target and hits the referee. Senator Brad Hutto is yet another Democrat from the coast. He is seemingly a smart guy. He also listens very well. Unfortunately, he stayed too quiet through most of the meeting. He could’ve used what seemed to be his openmindedness to convince the opposition. Instead, he sat and looked annoyed. I don’t blame him. I looked annoyed, too. Senator Phillip Shoopman is actually from the Greenville area. Despite apparently being opposed to the law change, he was also level headed. He seemed to imply he could handle a poker home game decriminalization measure as long as it didn’t involve opening up the state to new raffles. Of all the opponents in the room, he was the most reasonable. I appreciated his ability to disagree with me without resorting to name calling and being judgmental. Senator Mick Mulvaney from York County won the day. If there was an eye-on-the-ball legislator Monday night, it was Senator Mulvaney. Erudite, polite, and mature, Mulvaney was exactly what the conversation needed. If the entire legislature was made up of people like the York Co. senator, there might be a little more confidence in the intelligence of the body. Mulvaney is a Republican and we disagree on many subjects. That said, I can respect his style and his ability to allow me to disagree with him without resorting to tired and childish forms of debate. I’m quite pleased the lawmakers are taking the time to deal with this thorny issue. I’m less impressed with their way of handling their detractors. I covered lawmakers from 1996 to 2005. I’d forgotten how disenchanted I was with the people and the politics. I got a quick reminder Monday night. Grade: C- The Anti-Gambling lobby: Wow. I mean, wow. I know I live in the conservative part of a state that is one of the most conservative of the nation. I’ve seen the huge anti-gambling forces fill gymnasiums to fight against video poker. I know there are people who don’t like gambling around here. I get that part. That said, the folks who came out of the woodwork to fight the possibility of raffles and legalized poker home games were just…impressive. Chief among the detractors was Tony Beam, a conservative radio host and bigwig at a Southern Baptist university in the north part of Greenville County. Well-spoken and persuasive, Beam is a debater of the first order and has all the charisma of Rush Limbaugh. He is also the king of the straw man. He and Bob Jones University professor Dr. Bob Taylor (a doctor of math, if you can believe it) both rallied the troops by stating that allowing raffles and home games would open the door to casino gambling in South Carolina. They state this despite the fact the bills clearly state that such gambling would be strictly forbidden. They state it because the only way to really rally the anti-gambling crew is to offend their sense of morality. They would get nowhere if they said, “Fight against people’s rights to play cards in their own home! People playing poker in their home could turn your children into sinners. Charitable raffles in churches are the agents of Satan.” Even the most fervent of gambling haters would have a hard time getting a rise out of that. So, the detractors create the king of the straw men: home poker games and church raffles will mean MGM and Harrah’s will set up shop in Mauldin next week. It doesn’t follow, it’s silly, and it’s just wrong. Here’s the best part. The most vocal of the opponents at the hearing were from Bob Jones University and North Greenville University. Both are privately funded schools and take no state money. Fair enough. That said, their student body is made up of students who are there on scholarships. Many of those scholarships are funded by…wait for it…the South Carolina lottery. Later Monday night (yes, at a poker game) a graduate of Bob Jones University (who financed his way through school gambling on backgammon) asked why I thought his alma mater was so fervently against home poker games and raffles. Without understanding the motivation fully, I answered. First, they want to impose their morality on as many people as possible. Second, it’s an opportunity to be heard. They are an interest group and an interest group is nothing without an issue to fight for or against. And so, the stickers that say “No new gambling” on their chests. And so the tear-filled speeches about lost families. And so the wavering voice of a radio host who talks about the people he has brought back from the brink of video poker addiction. This is all because the American Legion wants to run a raffle to support its charities. This is all because I want to check-raise my friends in a cheap game of poker. Right. In short, the opposition is a lot like the proponents of the bill. They are so morally offended by the other side, they can’t bring themselves to make a legitimate argument. They are exceptionally devoted and charismatic, but they need to read a book by Dale Carnegie. Grade: C- Poker players: Despite a massive turnout in favor of the bill, a good portion of the people in the audience were there in support of charitable raffles. The local poker community is huge. Not enough of the players cared enough to show up. I knew going in that my presence wasn’t going to make much difference. I was going anyway, but felt better about it when G-Rob said, “Nothing ever got changed by people doing nothing.” I was disappointed by how few of my fellow poker players showed up. Grade: D It’s clear I’m frustrated. I’d hoped to write something a little more positive about the hearing. Sadly, nothing positive came from the hearing. The people on my side were unfocused, tangential, and irrational. The people on the other side were unfocused, tangential, and irrational. It was an act of legislative and advocacy masturbation and I am sad that I wasted nearly three hours of my life in the middle of it. Because I’ve converted to Optimism, I look forward to what’s to come. Because I still have latent fatalist tendencies, things don’t look too good–for other side. Photo courtesy GreenvilleOnline.com

Tink, F%$#!
It’s the first lesson I taught my wife when she joined me for a round on the frolf course. She’d never seen disc golf before so I figured I’d start easy. **TINK** “F%$#!!!” It’s the sound of a disc hitting the basket, but not staying in, and the subsequent reaction of the player. It only took about 5 minutes before we heard it happen the first time to a player in a group behind us. It’s been more than a year since I’ve been on the disc golf course, and it felt good to be back! The course in E-Vegas is amazing. All 18 holes have nice concrete tee pads and pictures of the hole at each tee. In fact, a number of the longer holes have alternate tee pads for women, amateurs and G-Rob. There’s a lot to like about the set-up of the course, too. There are mandatory openings through which you must throw the discs. There are lots of places where a bad throw could land you out of bounds or in the water. And the holes offer lots of opportunities for a variety of shots. It’s a longer course than Timmons Park back in Greenville, but it also doesn’t have as many Death Star trench-like shots either. On this day, I managed just one birdie (despite what the course suggests, regular frolfers consider all holes to be a Par 3). But I was happy with how I threw considering it had been so long since I was on a course. And I can’t wait to get back out and do it again! Plus, this gives the guys from G-Vegas just one more reason to visit. 1) Free place to stay. 2) Casino boat with poker room. 3) Disc golf course. 4) And for Bad Blood… some adult establishments.

Rendell pushes legalizing poker to fund tuition (Times Leader)

Rendell pushes legalizing poker strategy to fund tuition (Times Leader)
Though his plan hasn’t gained much traction, especially among local lawmakers, Gov. Ed Rendell is continuing to pitch his proposal to legalize video poker machines in bars and private clubs and use the revenue to offset tuition costs for some college students. More: continued here News provided by Poker Digger

Lucky Dog Poker Art Giveaway!

Lucky Dog Poker Art Giveaway!
LuckyDogPokerArt.com will be giving away two pieces of poker art work valued at up to $80 each! Please visit the Lucky Dog Poker Art Giveaway thread to register.

Rendell pushes legalizing poker to fund tuition (Times Leader)
Though his plan hasn’t gained much traction, especially among local lawmakers, Gov. Ed Rendell is continuing to pitch his proposal to legalize video poker machines in bars and private clubs and use the revenue to offset tuition costs for some college students. More: continued here News provided by Poker DiggerClick here to play