Would you report collusion in a freeroll?
Collusion can be hard to prove. Okay, maybe we see something that raises our suspicions. But that is a long way from having the kind of proof that the poker site
is going to need before they eliminate a customer. But what if you had the proof right there in the chat box? If you're playing a big Sunday tournament with a 50 or 100k payout, you'd probably report it right away. But what about a freeroll? Would you even bother to report it?
This is how it went down. I'm playing the 6AM $50 freeroll on Carbon Poker
since I was wide awake and there was nothing else going on that early on a Sunday. As we near the second hourly break, I notice some chat in the box in a language that I was unfamiliar with. I noted the names of the players chatting. Then moved the pointer over their names. They both showed Hungary as their location. Purely out of curiosity, I reached for my laptop and navigated my browser to google translate, and began typing in the text.
It started with greetings. But after a few minutes, as the hourly break approached, Player 1, let's call him, mentioned that he had to leave. He then suggested to the other Hungarian, let's call him Player 2, that he take his chips. Player 2, who had about 7.5k in chips, suggested that Player 1, who had just under 10k in chips should continue to play. After insisting that he really did have to go, Player 1 was given the thumbs up emoticon by player 2.
In the time that it took me to type all of the text into the translator, five or six hands had played out, during which time I was, shall we say, less than fully focused on the game. I returned my attention to the game just in time to see a final hand play out between the two Hungarian players, in which Player 1 was all-in for the last of his chips. I immediately noticed that Player 2 now had over 18k in chips. A look at the hand history showed three consecutive hands playing out in which Player 1 raised 4x pre-flop and was called by Player 2. Player 1 then bet 4x on the flop and turn. Each of these bets was called by Player 2. Player 1 then check/folded to a 4x bet on the river. Three hands played out the exact same way. In the end, 30xBB + (over 10k in chips) had passed from one player to the other. Player 2 thanked Player 1 before they fair welled each other and Player 1 left.
One more hand played out before the break started. If it were not for the break, I probably would have let the incident pass from my memory without giving it much more thought. But being on break and having a few minutes to kill, I asked if any of the other players caught that conversation about the chip dump that had just occurred. Judging from the replies I received, the other players seemed skeptical until I told them that I put the conversation into a translator and that the gist of it was that one player said he had to go and offered up his chips to the other. "Now look at the hand history and tell me what you see," I told them.
One player pointed out that any language other than English is prohibited at the tables. Of course we all know that. Another said that I was being anal. I suggested that he might feel different if he had seen the same thing occur in a buy-in tourney. Someone asked if I planned to report it. Maybe I would have if I thought that they would do anything about it. But being a freeroll and all, I personally doubted that they would, and thus deemed it unworthy of the time and effort required on my part to report it. The fact was that all I was really doing was putting it out there, in case anyone that felt more strongly about it than me might want to report it.
It occurred to me later that reporting it would probably have taken less time than it actually took to translate the chat between the Hungarians in the first place. I wasn't expecting to discover anything sinister when I did it. But now I had most irrefutable evidence of collusion that I have ever seen. If it had been a buy in tourney, I wouldn't have hesitated to report it. But should that have mattered? After all, right is right and wrong is wrong isn't it?
That is the question I am posing now. If you had irrefutable proof of collusion between two players, would you report it, even if it was only a freeroll tournament?