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Poker News

Black Friday Two Years On – A Time To Reflect And A Time To Legalise Online Poker In America

Written By: Maya Michaels | April 16, 2013 | Posted In Poker News

Yesterday was the second anniversary of ‘Black Friday’ the day that shook the world of online poker, and a day that is still having a serious effect on the way many people used to make their living a whole two years on.

To cut a long story short The United States Justice Department closed down three poker sites, Pokerstars, Full Tilt Poker and Absolute Poker. In total five domain names were taken, which also saw their 76 bank accounts taken, bank accounts that were spread across 14 different countries. Even today a large number of players are still waiting for their money to be returned, with reports suggesting Full Tilt Poker owes $300 million to its users and Absolute Poker owing $60 million.

Two years ago poker agent Brian Balsbaugh told CNBC, “It happened, it happened fast and it completely annihilated what was a flourishing industry in the United States.” Indeed it did happen fast and that flourishing industry is far from returning, despite online poker bills being passed in the states of Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey, but that is just three states! Five other American states are also trying to gain the necessary votes to legalise online poker as well, with those states being California, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania and Texas, but that makes just eight out of a total of 50 states which equates to just 16%! Now that isn’t much when you consider America has a population in excess of 313 million residents.

Poker players took to their social media sites yesterday to mark the second anniversary of ‘Black Friday’. Brent @ITRIED2WARNU wrote, “Today marks the two year anniversary of Black Friday. RIP Online Poker in the USA, 4/15/2011.”

Chris Moneymaker, the first online qualifier to win the coveted World Series of Poker wrote, “Driving to gym and hear 3 lottery commercials but online poker illegal.”

One US resident simply known as Mazin moved to Canada to ply his trade at playing poker. Speaking to the Canadian website torontoist.com he said, “There aren’t a lot of professions you can have at 22 where you can be anywhere in the world, as long as it’s not the States, and if you have your laptop with you you can make a decent living.”

Many people have had that decent living snatched away from them, but while there is a little light at the end of the tunnel it is a very small speck with no immediate signs of it getting any bigger. Chris Moneymaker has hit the nail on the head hasn’t he? You can gamble away your money on state lotteries in the comfort of your own home, buy you can’t do the same playing poker!

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