Feds Seize Poker Websites; Founders Indicted

from the guilty-until-proven-innocent dept

It appears that the federal government has really fallen in love with its new found ability to simply seize whatever websites they don't like. The latest is that the FBI (not DHS this time) has seized the three largest online poker websites, PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker, and indicted the founders of those sites. Some have already been arrested with warrants out for the others. Because, you know, poker is destroying society or something. While at least this time it actually commenced legal actions in association with the seizures, the more the government does this, the more it's going to make sure this new favorite tool (domain seizures) gets shot down by the courts.

First of all, whether or not those sites are illegal is something of an open question. Back in 2006, as part of a bill to protect our ports and harbors (I'm not kidding), Congress passed a "ban" on online gambling. But it's been a pretty open question as to whether or not poker sites really applied. There are questions as to whether or not poker is a game of skill or chance, with at least one court saying that it was the former, and thus not necessarily "gambling."

On top of that, some in Congress have been working hard for a while to clarify that online poker is legal.

Even if you accept the idea that these sites are breaking the law -- which is a big open question -- is it really okay to simply seize the domains prior to an adversarial hearing? File charges, bring it to court, and have the government ask for an injunction, allowing the site operators to state the basics of their case. Seizing the domains seems like a massive government overreach (yet again).

Of course, the interesting thing to me is that this may get a lot more people interested in the federal government's new love of seizing domain names prior to any real due process. Perhaps not that many people are all that concerned when the issue was the "boring" question of copyright, but an awful lot of people play online poker, and they are unlikely to appreciate the seizures...


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  1.  
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    sehlat (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:18pm

    Poker's Status

    At least one court has already ruled that poker is a game of SKILL, not gambling.

    http://www.pokernewsdaily.com/pennsylvania-judge-rules-poker-is-a-game-of-skill-941/

     

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    A Dan (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:19pm

    Game of skill

    I'd definitely go with game of skill for poker. Of course there's an element of luck, but that's true of most games of skill (save a few like Chess and Go).

    I had an account with at least one of these sites at one point, but only a free account.

     

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    umccullough (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:19pm

    DNS caching?

    It's interesting - some of my coworkers, upon reading this news, immediately logged into their FullTilt and Pokerstars clients - and found that their money was still in there.

    If the client programs are even using the domains to access the sites, they will continue to work as long as DNS caches are intact.

    At this point, since I work in a shop full of software developers, they're probably just gonna add pokerstars.com to their hosts file and continue on their merry way... which is pretty amusing. I guess they'll be stuck playing with other smart people, maybe online poker will become more challenging ;)

     

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    A Dan (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:20pm

    Re: Poker's Status

    That's even a different case from the one he linked in the post, I believe.

     

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    darkuncle, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:21pm

    backstory (fascinating reading)

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:24pm

    Absolute Poker is the only domain that looks to be seized for me in Australia. Full Tilt and Pokerstars seem to still work. Maybe it is just some latency in the DNS system.

    Funny how poker is more transparent than those CDOs and other instruments they let the banks gamble on. Also, I don't remember poker bringing down the world economy. Obviously someone isn't paying enough to the right people.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:27pm

    Re: DNS caching?

    How long before these sites get added to the Firefox plug-in to route around these blocks?

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:30pm

    Re: DNS caching?

    and found that their money was still in there

    For now...

    This feels like Neteller all over again - x10

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:32pm

    And I can't wait to get home to check the 2+2 forums...

    If their servers haven't melted down, that is.

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:35pm

    Fulltiltpoker.com - 91.211.98.20
    pokerstars.com - 77.87.179.116
    absolutepoker.com - 66.212.244.175

    Pop those in your host file and off you go.


    Interestingly enough, the DOJ/FBI page is hosted on the Amazon EC2 service. No DDOS opportunity there.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:42pm

    "There are questions as to whether or not poker is a game of skill or chance, with at least one court saying that it was the former, and thus not necessarily "gambling."

    To gamble is to wager money in a game of skill or chance. Either way, you are putting up money for something that is not guaranteed. So, poker is gambling. Ask a casino manager or old timey cowboy if he agrees with some no-practical-application-theory-only law professor who feels poker is not gambling based on some pseudo-intellectual argument. I think you already know the answer you'll receive, and it's the right one.

    "Even if you accept the idea that these sites are breaking the law -- which is a big open question -- is it really okay to simply seize the domains prior to an adversarial hearing?"

    Absolutely not.

     

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    umccullough (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:46pm

    Re:

    To gamble is to wager money in a game of skill or chance.

    Much like the stock market...

     

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    umccullough (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:51pm

    Re:

    Actually, could you please point me to where you found your definition of "gamble"? I tried looking it up and pretty much none of the definitions I found reference "skill".

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:52pm

    Pokerstars.com - 77.87.179.116
    fulltiltpoker.com - 91.211.98.20
    absolutepoker.com - 66.212.244.175

    pop those in your host file and off you go.


    Also, it seems that the FBI/DOJ page is hosted by Amazon's EC2 service.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:55pm

    It's not about if it's legal or not. They are accused of fraud and money laundering.

    Again, Mike spins this his way. Read the article, seriously.

    And if they wouldn't have shut the sites down, MORE people would have lost MORE money.

    But you're right, since no one knows if it's legal or not, let's allow them to keep stealing our money. It's a great plan Mike.

     

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    umccullough (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 2:56pm

    Re:

    Regardless of whether it's legal or not - seizing the domain doesn't shut down the site, and doesn't prevent people from accessing it... which is perhaps why it's a story here.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:05pm

    Re: Re:

    Is it really worth my time to point out the difference between an American pastime game (poker) and the backbone of an economy (stock market)? Seriously?

     

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  18.  
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    umccullough (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:09pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    You're right, people gain/lose money in both - but one is decidedly more evil.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:09pm

    Re: DNS caching?

    You clearly do not understand DNS caching.

     

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    Chosen Reject (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:12pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    It might help. Oh look, here is an article that points out the difference. Before you go shouting down the link just because of the domain name, realize it was written by a professor of psychology and the he gets into the legal definition of gambling (which would be necessary since we are talking about the legality of it here).

    It turns out the answer was yes, and now the answer moving towards no. Can you gamble in the game of the stock market? Absolutely. Can you gamble in the game of poker? Absolutely. Are all people playing either of those games gambling? Absolutely not.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:13pm

    "It's not about if it's legal or not. They are accused of fraud and money laundering.

    Again, Mike spins this his way. Read the article, seriously.

    And if they wouldn't have shut the sites down, MORE people would have lost MORE money.

    But you're right, since no one knows if it's legal or not, let's allow them to keep stealing our money. It's a great plan Mike."

    Yeah, it does look like they are probably guilty of laundering, but who do you think was stealing and who were they stealing from? They did what they could come up with to get the players money to them. Unfortunately they weren't able to find a legal way to do that, but there was no theft involved.

     

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    Niall (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:14pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Ok, we Europeans really don't understand how you Americans can have a country with guns everywhere, where violence is such an ingrained part of culture, and yet you act (en masse) as if a little gambling is the end of the world and will lead to mass killing of kittens, children and Republican grannies. Is it some massively Calvinist hold-over from the Pilgrim Fathers?

    Maybe it's like with online porn vs sex attacks. Maybe if you could all legitimately (and sanely) gamble (which by the way can be very profitable for the economy and government) there would be less mad gambling with the world economy.

     

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    Nicedoggy, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:15pm

    Re:

    Who knows, maybe the American government will try again to seize the domains for Barbados gambling sites and be slapped again with sanctions by the WTO.

     

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  24.  
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    Niall (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:16pm

    Re:

    Put gambling underground or only online (like foreign sites) and you are more or less inviting the Mob or whoever to play/control it, since you decline to.

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:16pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Don't feel bad. We Americans can't figure it out either.

     

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  26.  
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    umccullough (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:17pm

    Re: Re: DNS caching?

    Really now?

    So, when I ping pokerstars.com and it returns 77.87.179.116 here because my upstream DNS server still has the entry cached, that's somehow a misunderstanding on my part?

     

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  27.  
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    Nicedoggy, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:18pm

    Meanwhile BRICS just finished their summit and according to some sources, they will surpasse the G7 in economic power.

    Can the U.S. survive loosing their economic leverage to force others to do something.

    Will the U.S. accept to be bullied to accept their views?

     

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  28.  
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    techie42 (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:20pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Yah, everybody knows you have a chance at winning in poker.

     

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  29.  
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    Micheal Whitetail, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:25pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There is no outcry agaisnt the supposedly morally bankrupt and ultimate evils of online gambling... at least amoung the majority of the American public.

    It is, quite simply, the entrenched gambling industry attempting to legistlate the competition out of business instead of competing/innovating with them.

     

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  30.  
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    Richard (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:25pm

    Re:

    The US ban on online gambling has been ruled illegal by the WTO.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:30pm

    They didn't just seize domains they froze all bank accounts associated with it too.

     

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  32.  
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    Richard (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:35pm

    Re:

    Online gambling is legal in pretty much the rest of the world. The US is going to have trouble making this stick. The WTO has ruled against them before - and will do so again if it come to that.

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:41pm

    Something seems fishy, I Just checked both Full Tilt and PokerStars websites are up and running.

     

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  34.  
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    Josef Anvil (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:43pm

    Re: Spin spin spin

    Yes there are accusations of fraud and money laundering. And yes those are illegal activities.

    You have to ask yourself why they resorted to fraud and money laundering. They were working around the system. The issue of whether or not poker is gambling forced them to work around a law that banned online gambling.

    The real question to be asked is why we put up with a Congress that hides an online gambling ban in a bill that is designed to protect our harbors and ports. Yell "the TERRORISTS are coming!!" and you have a bill to protect ports that is not going to have much opposition, then add in whatever legislation may have had some opposition and job done.

    So yes, they did commit crimes, because the TERRORISTS could use online gambling to get us.

     

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  35.  
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    umccullough (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:46pm

    Re: Re: DNS caching?

    And... my server's caching of these domains has finally expired.

    Suck it, I know how DNS works.

     

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  36.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:47pm

    Re:

    So what happens to the hundreds or thousands of dollars some poeple might have in their accounts?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:47pm

    Ok, the FBI seized FullTiltPoker.COM and PokerStars.COM, those have the whole FBI page on them, not the FullTiltPoker.NET and PokerStars.NET domains.

    HAHAHA... Good job FBI.

     

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  38.  
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    Ron Rezendes (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:49pm

    Re:

    Poker, chess, pinball - all have been proven in US Courts to NOT be games of chance, thereby allowing wagering between players so long as there is no cut of the pot involved (i.e. the house can't take a % or fixed amount from the pot).

    I play professional tournaments for money in all three and have some first hand knowledge of how and why this is allowed.

    The crux in poker is that players can win even if they don't hold the best hand, bluffing is a skill and can be done regardless of the cards you are dealt allowing you to still win through the use of skill.

    Roger Sharpe proved pinball was also a game of skill to the NY City Council and single handedly helped overturn the ban on pinball in several states.

    The San Diego Chess Club, of which I have been president of for 15+ years now, has had the local authorities visit because someone wasn't comfortable with players playing chess for money (anywhere from a quarter a game to five bucks a game playing blitz chess - 5 minutes on the clock for each player). When the police showed up they asked a couple of questions, essentially was all the money strictly between the players involved, and when told that it was they informed the complainant that there was nothing illegal going on even though it was in a city park (Balboa Park).

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 3:55pm

    More whack-a-mole that compromises the integrity of .com & .net

    Their websites are hosted offshore and are still running. The FBI seems to have only seized their Verisign managed domain names. DNS caching will prevent some people from seeing the seizure notice immediately. You can read the seizure notice here:

    http://50.17.223.71/

    Watch this space to see a list of all of the domain names they've seized:

    http://www.dailychanges.com/cirfu.net/#tab=in

     

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    forgotten, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 4:17pm

    If you break the law, if you're a leech on society, if you don't pay taxes, if you lie, you should be arrested. now if only the chickenshit feds could deal with wall street in the same fashion.

     

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  41.  
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    BigBroccoli, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 4:19pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    I would appreciate it, as I don't think there is much of a difference. It has always terrified me that the backbone of our economy is simply betting whether or not stocks will go up or down. More and more too, this isn't based on a companies actual production but just sentiment. Please elucidate the difference.

     

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  42.  
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    Wulfman (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 4:45pm

    Lottery

    Gambling is only illegal if the governments cant find an easy way to tax the shit out of it. Lottery's were illegal until the government decided they were a great way to make money.
    They allow Indian casinos to have poker and slots and tax them. It all boils down to TAXES. Which the government does so poorly to spend so they want more and More and MORE.

     

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  43.  
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    Trerro, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 5:00pm

    Stocks vs Poker

    The stock market is a game of betting skill. You bet on your business analysis and mathematical skill, hoping your knowledge will allow you to make a winning investment before the other players beat you to the purchase, and hoping unexpected bad luck doesn't screw over your investment. You decide when to call, raise, or fold your bet as you see the business progress from day to day.

    Poker is a game of betting skill. You bet on your personal analysis and mathematical skill, hoping your knowledge will allow you to make winning investments in hands, trying to beat your opponents to the pot, and hoping unexpected bad luck doesn't screw your investment over. You decide when to call, raise, or fold your investment in a given hand as it progresses from play to play.

    Can someone explain to me how these are at ALL different, other than than the fact that game of stocks has far more simultaneous players and the game is played over a longer time scale?

    Oh right, one has a powerful lobby behind it, the other doesn't.

     

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  44.  
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    McCrea, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 5:23pm

    Re: Game of skill

    Luck often play a role. How do you decide who gets to move first for instance?

     

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  45.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 7:11pm

    We officially live in a police state.

     

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  46.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 7:14pm

    What, no Lady Gaga references?

     

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  47.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 8:23pm

    Re:

    Please. /sard
    Kenny Rodgers.

     

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  48.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 8:40pm

    Well

    I was wondering if this was going to happen since they started talking about mooo & craigs when they were still start-ups and the supposed online gambling restrictions.

    I am to make a happy living playing online poker and the one I play at updated and poof still online. Makes one wonder if the trickle effect comes into play here.

    Turn on the faucet of oppressive actions and ya get an obvious reaction. Ya drip water in the bucket and people build a bigger bucket.

    Can you imagine if they locked the accounts? Capture of Trillions of legal (as the definition stands) assets. I'm pretty sure the entirety of The Mouth's Rage will be the least of there issues.

     

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    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 8:48pm

    Re: Stocks vs Poker

    If successful its long term either way. Lulz.

     

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  50.  
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    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 8:53pm

    Re: Stocks vs Poker

    I also beg to differ on the lobby portion. We have not had a need to for a while but some of the best known names in poker have more then impressive stats on there resumes besides the bb win ratio in there.

     

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  51.  
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    bob t, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 9:06pm

    i funded my ftp account with my checking account-- will they freeze my account?

     

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  52.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 11:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Gambling is legal in America, in places like Las Vegas and elsewhere. We do have a lottery.

    While I'm generally against gambling, one must realize the true purpose of disallowing anyone to open up a gambling arena. The purpose is for the government to grant government sanctioned arenas monopoly power over the market. The same thing applies to liquor/alcohol licenses. While I generally don't think people should drink (though some alcoholic drinks might actually be good for you in moderation and that might be OK), the government of many states grants liquor licenses and those things are expensive as heck. They artificially limit how many people can open up bars and whatnot. Why? Because it effectively gives very specific interests far less competition to compete with. and while I agree the effects maybe good in this case (ie: reducing gambling and drinking), which I actually do think is a good thing, I think the true motives are nefarious. The true motives are the same motives behind why the government grants taxi cab monopolies and all the other many monopolies that the government grants.

     

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  53.  
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    G Thompson (profile), Apr 15th, 2011 @ 11:52pm

    Re:

    Yes of course they are accused of it, though they have NOT been convicted of it.

    Oh and It forgets to mention that Pokerstars.com is fully owned, serviced, and operated out of the Isle of Man.
    ie: IT IS NOT IN ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM A USA COMPANY so the USA has absolutely no jurisdiction at all.

    Also good luck prosecuting an entity on the IOM. No, nada, nyet extradition ability with them. Well maybe rendition which I would not put past the USG at this time.

    Maybe they should try coming after some of the Australian Poker sites too.. Though be prepared for the USG Agents who do to spend a lot of time in federal gaol.

     

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    The eejit (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 12:40am

    Re: Stocks vs Poker

    One is funded by fraudulent money - the other is not. Guess which one is which.

     

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  55.  
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    Marcus, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 12:44am

    How can this be justified, when almost every state has some sort of lottery system. Our government is greedey as hell and thinks that they deserve a cut of any and all revenue. The only reason why these state lotteries are accepted is because the government can tax it. If gambling is considered illegal then remove all of the different gambling channels out there. Not just the ones that you can't tax, bottom line is if online poker was taxed it would be more than okay. what a shame.

     

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    mnight, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 3:44am

    thank god, I hate thinking for myself

    Thank god online poker has finally been "dealt" with by the nanny state. I'm so thankful that the powers of "they" are able to determine what is good for me. Lord forbid that I think for myself. Poker is evil, and online poker even moreso.

    By the way, what's that powerball up to now? Think i'll pick up some tickets on my way to the bingo hall right after I hit the horse track and place some wagers...

     

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    Togashi (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 4:03am

    Re: Re:

    There was a ban... on pinball? That's news to me.

     

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    Sunny (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 4:04am

    USA domestic police get to make international law

    People from all over the world use Full Tilt and other online poker sites, and in the countries they live in, gambling is legal. By preventing access to these sites, they're effectively freezing my funds. World-wide class action against the FBI to get our money anyone??

     

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    inc, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 4:57am

    Re: DNS caching?

    You should setup a hosts file with the IPs and your DNS will continue to function for you.

    Windows
    \Windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts

    Mac OS X
    /private/etc/hosts

    Linux
    /etc/hosts

    The format of each entry is:
    [internet address] [domain name]
    127.0.0.1 www.domain.com
    internet address - a standard IP address, i.e. 127.0.0.1
    domain name - A Fully Qualified Domain Name, FQDN, i.e. www.domain.com

     

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  60.  
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    JMT, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 5:14am

    Re: Stocks vs Poker

    "Can someone explain to me how these are at ALL different..."

    One can effect entires economies and the other can't. Just as well they're going after the dangerous one...

     

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  61.  
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    Nom du Clavier (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 5:32am

    Re: Re: Game of skill

    That's a question independent of the game, isn't it? You could just as easily decide that every even calendar day you get to start, every odd day your opponent gets to start.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  62.  
    icon
    Shon Gale (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 6:24am

    Welcome to the land of the free!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  63.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 6:35am

    I would imagine that the penal aspect of this for players will certainly be the loss of funds in any account. You can't go after 20 million players. But balances? POOF!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 6:36am

    On the bright side, recent deposits will probably never get processed

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
    identicon
    Bruce Hayden, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 10:20am

    Re: Stocks vs Poker

    For your information, betting on the stock market is no longer a skill. Insider trading goes on EVERY day by the same people who crashed our economy. Martha Stewart was made an example of only because it was so rampant and they had to prosecute somebody to take some heat off the bigger players.
    Your comparison between the stock market and poker is sadly lacking in substance. Poker is fair and truly a game of skill.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66.  
    icon
    Vincent Clement (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 10:53am

    Another example of the government doing policing for the private sector. Everyone knows that Brick & Mortar casinos were behind the ban on online gambling. They have plenty to lose if people could gamble in the comfort of their home.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  67.  
    icon
    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 11:04am

    Re:

    Pretty fallacious logic there considering they actually let these sites buy seats for there major tournaments to earn a secondary profit from the tournaments to win them.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  68.  
    identicon
    Allan, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 12:17pm

    It was a black friday for online poker, but not all hope is lost. It seems the sites are up again at www.fulltilpoker.co.uk and www.pokerstars.eu but real money games and deposits are blocked for US players.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  69.  
    identicon
    Scott, Apr 16th, 2011 @ 5:49pm

    online poker

    I guess we really are turning into a socialistic government being ran by a power-hungrey non-American born muslim. Run to the hills fellow Americans, high-and-mighty Muslims are taking over the world.FACT!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  70.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 5:57pm

    Re: Re:

    Poker, chess, pinball - all have been proven in US Courts to NOT be games of chance, thereby allowing wagering between players so long as there is no cut of the pot involved (i.e. the house can't take a % or fixed amount from the pot).

    Except if "the house" is a casino that's paid some kind of license fee to the government (or exists outside the US's jurisdiction)? Because casinos take a cut of each pot, right?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  71.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 6:04pm

    Re: Re:

    Also good luck prosecuting an entity on the IOM. No, nada, nyet extradition ability with them.

    I believe you're mistaken about that.

    "The Treaty on Extradition between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.... shall apply in relation to the United Kingdom: to Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man..."

    http://www.expatintelligence.com/extradition-treaty-isle-of-man.shtml

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  72.  
    icon
    btr1701 (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 8:05pm

    Re: Re: Game of skill

    > Luck often play a role.

    Even pro football games start with a coin toss...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  73.  
    icon
    btr1701 (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 8:09pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    > Is it really worth my time to point out the difference between
    > an American pastime game (poker) and the backbone of an
    > economy (stock market)?

    You needn't point that out at all. The difference is obvious. When people fuck around gambling on the stock market, entire nations can collapse. When people fuck around gambling with poker, nothing happens.

    Which is more harmful?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  74.  
    icon
    btr1701 (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 8:14pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    > you Americans act (en masse) as if a little gambling is the end
    > of the world and will lead to mass killing of kittens

    No, we Americans don't act that way at all. The big casinos are acting like that, and buying off congressmen to make anything that threatens their cash flow illegal.

    The average American couldn't give a tin shit about online poker. But the Las Vegas and Atlantic City Casino Associations do. And since they have the money to buy votes, the average American gets yet another freedom taken away from them in the name of protecting a legacy business model threatened by the internet.

    It's just another flavor of the MPAA/RIAA lunacy.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  75.  
    icon
    btr1701 (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 8:18pm

    Re:

    > And if they wouldn't have shut the sites down

    Except they didn't shut the sites down, did they, genius?

    They seized the domain name, but the sites are still up and running.

    So how does that wrinkle fit in with your "they're just protecting people from losing money" theory?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  76.  
    icon
    btr1701 (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 8:23pm

    Re: Re:

    > So what happens to the hundreds or thousands of dollars
    > some poeple might have in their accounts?

    The government will keep it, of course, to "protect" those wide-eyed innocents from having it "stolen".

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  77.  
    icon
    btr1701 (profile), Apr 16th, 2011 @ 8:26pm

    Re:

    > You can't go after 20 million players. But balances? POOF!

    Considering a great many of those players are citizens of other countries where online poker is perfectly legal, that would amount to a wholesale illegal theft of property by the US Government.

    Talk about a political and diplomatic hornets nest...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  78.  
    identicon
    Glen Pearson, Apr 17th, 2011 @ 1:10am

    land of the free?

    Poker is not gambling.If poker is gambling then so is online stock trading or trading in general.Why do the same people keep ending up at final tables,time and time again?What are they the luckiest people in the world?NO!In the game of poker you measure the equity involved in any given situation based on all of the available information you have at your disposal and act accordingly.Just as investments in the stock market do not always yield the returns expected or not at all in many cases, poker to has this trait.Now, you may say, what about the people who do not know how to play and are blowing their money gambling.Well to you I say, ANYONE who invest in anything in life without calculating the risk to reward ratio properly and accounting for all the variables at their disposal is GAMBLING.In that sense poker is gambling and so is everything else you do.What about children who dream of becoming pro football players?Should we tell them that they are not aloud to gamble with their physical well being or for that matter what about the cost of playing football that is spent and more times then not wasted because of an injury down the line or lack of discipline and fading interest.Adults should be able to measure risk by themselves and they do not need the help of the government.Now if you are talking about slot machines then yes I agree get rid of them as they are BUILT to make the player lose or how about state lotteries?Poker is a game of 100% skill.If you invest in the correct situation you WILL make money playing against weaker opponents.This is no different than any other sport!I did not see any of you stepping in to save Buster Douglas from Mike Tyson when the odds were 50 to 1.NO!You didn't because you believed it was the mans right to wager his body against the will of another man.I hope this has opened the eyes of some.Thank you for taking the time to read this, regardless of what your opinion is.Remember it is your duty to protect the freedoms of others as one day your number may be called and will I be there to stand for you if you will not for me?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  79.  
    icon
    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 17th, 2011 @ 1:37pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    I marked this as insightful even though on hindsight it's full of holes and I will tell you why.

    If they really wanted to protect there legacy model they needed to stop them from buying brick and mortar event seats to resell in the form of a tournament seat. And furthermore satellites for that seat. Now if you say is true and there attempting to protect a legacy business model then the logical conclusion they needed to do this back in the 90's.

    Did they? NO. They adapted. 10,000 players laying 10k down for a shot at glory; enough said.

    So how does this exactly put holes in your theory? Oh yeah, they adapted before and its Uncle Sam with that finger of his giving us a prophylactic while we are under anesthesia because I'm dam sure if anybody was awake to the issues there sure as hell is a fallout.

    I'll say this again for those in the nose bleed section. Learn the trickle effect. Turn on the faucet of oppression and there's and obvious reaction. Drip the shit and people build a bigger/better bucket.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  80.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 17th, 2011 @ 1:43pm

    Goodbye America

    I am not an American, but play on Pokerstars. So to the faceless goons of the American government, how do I get my money back?

    I'm quite happy America will soon be relegated to 'has been' status - the fact that you are the biggest debtor nation in the world and is now only a world power because of its military - goodbye America - your government has turned you into a big pile of shit.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  81.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 17th, 2011 @ 2:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: DNS caching?

    Just set it up in your hosts file ......

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  82.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 17th, 2011 @ 2:04pm

    Re: Re:

    No, it's only a story here because Mike hasn't read the article, again. Indictment means there were official accusation against them. Mike, again, in only a way that Mike does, put a spin on the story, to, again, make them look like bad guys. This was completely legal, called for, and according to procedure.

    And all of the above is according to US laws. I'm aware the WTO deemed the bans illegal, but that doesn't make actually make it illegal in the US. Read up on it. Hence, all this was legal.

    If they didn't supposedly fraud, there wouldn't have had a seizure, therefore there wouldn't have been a story. But that's not how TD/Mike operate.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  83.  
    icon
    The eejit (profile), Apr 17th, 2011 @ 2:32pm

    Re: online poker

    Heh. 0/10.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  84.  
    icon
    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 17th, 2011 @ 2:32pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    If I could use the ascii text of the captain kirk right now I would.

    But as for coulda shouldas. Ya may want to get your story strait eejit.

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20110415/13475713911/feds-seize-poker-websites-founders-indicte d.shtml#c1062

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  85.  
    icon
    Chris in Utah (profile), Apr 17th, 2011 @ 2:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    scratch that.. picard

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  86.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Apr 17th, 2011 @ 2:48pm

    Re: land of the free?

    Poker is a game of 100% skill.

    I agree with you except for this part. I don't think it's reasonable to claim there is no luck involved in poker. Even the top pro players readily admit there is an element of luck.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  87.  
    icon
    Niall (profile), Apr 17th, 2011 @ 3:23pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Maybe I just read too many fundie sites. True, most reasonable Americans seem ok with gambling, it's just when it comes to politicians and lawmakers, they seem to listen to those who make the most noise.

    That was why I included the (en masse) bit...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  88.  
    icon
    Niall (profile), Apr 17th, 2011 @ 3:26pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    But..but... but... shouldn't the US always follow its treaty obligations, like how they will have to tighten copyright and increase constitutional abuse in order to live down to ACTA?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  89.  
    icon
    Niall (profile), Apr 17th, 2011 @ 3:34pm

    Re: online poker

    The only 'fact' is that you buy into every idiot right-wing talking head's vituperative spiel and ridiculous tea-bagger rants.

    Your government wouldn't know socialism if it voted in every so-called left-wing politican in the country. Obama is no more power-hungry than any other politician, and seems a lot better than the Cheneys, Rumsfelds, etc. that graced the last administration. Last I heard, Hawaii counted as part of the US, or are you going to explain how every other Hawaiian person also isn't American? I have yet to see a Muslim alive who would swear on the Bible rather than the Koran, and who would attend a Christian church. I have also yet to see Muslims 'take over' any Western (and historically Christian) country.

    So... you were spouting?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  90.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Apr 18th, 2011 @ 7:22am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: DNS caching?

    You should consider reading the posts before replying to them.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  91.  
    icon
    SoCooLBob (profile), Apr 18th, 2011 @ 1:09pm

    Play Full Tilt In The United States ???

    I understand there is a way To Do this?
    I'd like to Know ...
    http://www.facebook.com/socoolbob
    http://www.facebook.com/learninghow

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  92.  
    identicon
    freaks, Mar 24th, 2012 @ 7:29am

    re

    If they did something illegal they must be indicted.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  93.  
    identicon
    USPokerSites, Dec 4th, 2013 @ 10:32am

    Nice Blog My Friend! I've got a Blog for Us Poker Players. Take a look!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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