Category Archives: Online Poker Regulation

fast-paced poker

Taking advantage of fast-paced poker

Taking advantage of fast-paced poker

One of the great things about the Internet is that it speeds everything up. When it comes to online poker, this means that you can play multi table tournaments at a turbo speed, with short levels and antes and blinds that just shoot up. A lot of live tournaments also have fast structures and are sometimes listed as “turbo” to tell you that you can anticipate the game going at breakneck speed.

Visit some several poker sites, and you’ll find a ton of tournaments set up this way. For example, some real money poker services designate some tournaments as “Regular” or “Slow.” These feature levels that can take up to 15 minutes, and the starting stacks are deep, while the antes and blinds don’t go up quickly at all. However, the “Turbo” and “Hyper-Turbo” tournaments are gaining in popularity as well.

How does it work? Well, the usual “Turbo” tournament will give you five-minute levels. However, the “Hyper-Turbo” tournaments feature three-minute levels, and the antes and blinds will go up approximately twice as quickly as they would in a “Turbo” event. Other poker websites offer tournaments moving at similar rates with those designations.

This means that tournaments will end pretty quickly. The most frequently played “Turbo” events are daily affairs, and the buy-ins range from 55 cents to $109. These games are called “The Hot $75” or whatever the buy-in is, and they all provide 3,000 chips to start and offer five-minute levels. If you get to the second hour, you’ll be at the 200/400/50 level. The “Hot” online fast-paced poker tournaments with lower buy-ins often bring in thousands of players, and the whole thing is usually done within no more than four hours.

Does this mean that speedier tournaments reward good luck more than skill? After all, the format means a lot more all-ins preflop, which means you’re hoping for strong hands more so than you do in the slower formats. However, these faster tournaments also benefit those who have the same skills to do well in slower tournaments. This means that it still pays to be clever with your starting hand choices, realizing the importance of position, choosing the right bet size and having the ability to read and predict what opponents are likely to do.

The main difference? Everything is going much more quickly. Your adjustments will be fewer, and you won’t have as much time to get over mistakes. You also can’t wait as long for the ideal hand. So let’s say for example that you get 150 big blinds to start for the initial five-minute level, but after the antes kick in, you’ll just have 30 if your starting stack hasn’t changed. So how can you benefit in this format?

Stay awake

If you don’t pay attention to deadlines, you’ll miss registering for the next hand and you’ll leave a lot on the table.

Read the others early

Use your initial levels to get a sense of your opponents’ tendencies to find the tight and loose players, and who appears to be playing with more savvy than guesswork. You don’t have as many hands to get this read and you have less time per hand.

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New York Online Poker Progress

MGM Resorts Comes Out In Support Of New York Online Poker Progress

New York Online Poker Progress

Nevada-based casino giant MGM Resorts appears optimistic about the chances of New York passing online poker legislation in the near future. A bill on the table in the Empire State advanced out of a Senate committee this week and awaits a possible full Senate vote.

“This legislation recognizes that millions of New Yorkers play online poker on unregulated and unprotected off-shore poker websites that operate with no oversight, fraud controls, or age restrictions,” MGM General Counsel John McManus said in a statement Thursday.

“We applaud the Senate Finance Committee’s vote to create a safe, legal environment for online poker through legislation that will generate tens of millions of dollars in revenue for taxpayers, and create open and fair opportunities for all providers of online poker.”

MGM cited a poll that showed that more than 70 percent of New York residents “agree that safe, regulated online poker should be legal.”

McManus was recently seen at a Congressional hearing on daily fantasy sports, which did touch on the regulation of other Internet gambling. He also gave testimony at September’s online poker hearing in Albany. “If the gaming industry doesn’t innovate it will be Amazon’ed by other forms of entertainment,” he told Empire State lawmakers. “Internet poker can be effectively regulated.”

New York’s interest in online poker comes as Pennsylvania is considering Internet casinos and New Jersey is witnessing record Internet gaming revenue for Atlantic City casinos.

MGM recently reached a deal to acquire Boyd Gaming’s 50-percent stake in Borgata, which also has the state’s largest online casino in terms of revenue. That move could have implications for the Garden State online betting industry. Nevada’s governor indicated last month that he really wants to broker an online poker compact with New Jersey.

Source: CardPlayer – New York Online Poker Progress

New York Online Poker

2016 Online Poker Legalization in New York?

It hasn’t been California or Pennsylvania grabbing the most attention on the online poker front this month. The state of New York, which has flirted with regulating the online card game for a few years now, appears poised for a real run in 2016.

There is already stand-alone online poker legislation on the table, and the proposal is also part of a possible budget deal. The state’s current urgency with regards to daily fantasy sports legislation could speed up the process of getting online poker approved, whether on its own or in an omnibus measure. Both DFS and poker stand to benefit from being skill-based games.

New York authorized a few new brick-and-mortar casinos in order to help struggling upstate economies, and it was said at an online poker hearing last year that bringing the card game to the Internet likely wouldn’t happen until the new casinos are built. However, that might not be the case anymore. According to a report from GamblingCompliance, one of the online poker proponents in the Empire State’s legislature said there might be motivation to get it done this year.

Assembly Member Gary Pretlow, Chairman of the New York Assembly Racing and Wagering Committee, told GamblingCompliance: “If I can get assurances that the brick-and-mortar operations are all a part of it, then we will probably move the bill this year.”

Another indicator that New York might be ready to regulate an online casino game is the fact that on Tuesday the State Assembly passed a bill legalizing mixed martial arts, which is expected to be signed by the governor. New York would be the last state in the country to legalize MMA. AsThe New York Times pointed out, the state is warming to activities that it once viewed as illicit.

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Big poker weekend winners

Congratulations Weekend Winners!

Congratulations to our weekend poker winners!!

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Good luck at the tables!

Ready to put your skills on the line? You can practice as much as you need on the free online poker tables and get all the practice you need before making the transition to legal online poker sites.

Online Poker Waiting for Pokerstars

When the Division of Gaming Enforcement cleared the path for PokerStars to return to the United States in late September, the long-term prospects of the New Jersey online poker market immediately took a turn toward the positive.

As for the industry’s short-term outlook, that’s an entirely different story.

PokerStars’ approval may result in existing operators temporarily scaling back their efforts, instead waiting until what many industry analysts believe to be the site’s early 2016 launch to jockey for position.

What results is a market that will struggle to grow throughout a period when online poker typically thrives.

Read the full story at

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California Assemblyman Talks Online Poker

Few legislators have been more involved in the effort to legalize online poker in the state of California than State Assemblyman Mike Gatto: The issue has been one of interest for him since the first online poker bill was introduced in California in 2008.

Late last year, he prefiled his own online poker bill (AB 9), and though progress has stalled until the state legislature reconvenes on January 4, he fully expects to take up the issue again in the new year.

California has the potential to be the biggest online poker market in the US, but attempts to pass legislation have met resistance on two major topics: Bad actors and the inclusion of the horse racing industry as potential licensees.

Poker Industry PRO was granted the opportunity to ask the Assemblyman, who is at the forefront of efforts to pass online poker legislation in California, his opinions on some controversial topics. Here are just a few of the questions he addressed.

Do you think regulating online poker in California is in the best interest of its citizens?

It is no secret that there are many Californians who are playing poker online, on unregulated, off-shore sites. That is money that’s leaving the country. When players do so, they also face uncertainties with regard to such things as the security of their deposits, or whether they will be paid when they wish to cash out winnings.

If the state can provide a well-regulated market, there is no doubt players will repatriate their funds to legal operators, who will in turn provide tax revenue to the state.

Do you believe that including language to exclude “bad actors” in the law itself serves the people of California better than allowing the state gaming regulators to decide the conditions that potential licensees must meet in order to be deemed suitable?

I’ve tried to craft a bill that will give an opportunity for groups to make a compelling case as to whether or not they should have access to the California market. The Legislature should provide clear guidance to the Executive Branch regulators as to what individuals and entities should qualify for licenses.

Any business that is allowed by the state to make financial transactions such as those that are involved with online gaming, should be held to the highest standard possible to assure their integrity for the sake of their customers.

As the regulation of online poker spreads around the globe, lawmakers and regulators are faced with the issue of consumers continuing to utilize unlicensed online poker sites. What do you think are some of the most effective methods for deterring players from patronizing black-market sites? Do you think assessing fines to players caught using unauthorized sites is appropriate?

Unfortunately there is little a state government can do to regulate the Internet. I would like to see the federal government put pressure on the worst actors around the globe.

On the state level, prosecutions and regulatory actions, where appropriate, might serve as a deterrent. The best deterrent though is a safer marketplace.

What would you say to your constituents who are frustrated with the lack of progress of online poker legislation in California over the past several years?

I share their frustration.


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