Amaya. Good for the game - or bad?
As you guys may be aware, I stepped away from poker for quite a while after Full Tilt hit one or two challenges with their leadership style, although I did eventually manage to retrieve my funds from them. At that point in time PokerStars
were far and away the best poker site, not just in their amount of traffic but in terms of a total commitment to quality customer service and trying to give everybody as pleasant a playing experience with them as possible.
I wasn't keeping up with poker news
during the time that I was away, but I think it might be fair to say that PokerStars aren't quite as adored by the poker community now as they were at the time that I left. In fact, some members here seem to unleash personal attacks on any other members who don't loathe PokerStars the same way that they do. They have reduced the number of website affiliates, they have increased rake, in fact they have done many of the things that you would expect a company owned by shareholders to do in an effort to maximise returns on the money that those shareholders have invested in them.
Quite frankly, I'm not particularly bothered what poker pros or players that make a living from grinding think about the changes, they have little relevance to my life as I'm a casual player and I can see why they have an axe to grind about these changes. They're quite clearly biased. As Daniel Negreanu said: "Winning players are killing poker". I assume that he was referring to online
poker, because seeing "ordinary" people winning enormous sums of money obviously attracts a lot of new players to the game.
I read somewhere, can't remember where, that because Amaya is a publicly quoted company, with shareholders, this means that they are more likely to be able to swing a deal for online poker to return to the USA. Most people here would probably see that as a good thing? I certainly would.
PokersStars did a trememendous job in helping to build up the worldwide interest in, and following for, poker. A lot of their big tournaments still go out on TV all around the world. Now poker is well established, they have a dominant position in the online poker industry and their shareholders want them to cash in on that. They're not there to mollycoddle multi-tablers and poker pros, they're there to earn a good return for their investors.
Obviously they are going to lose players, so we might see other poker sites
gaining more prominence, especially now that they seem less customer-service-orientated. Full Tilt is also now part of the Amaya stable, but there are plenty of other poker sites available. Check out this page if you would like to find some more sites to sign up with, and help to support CardsChat by doing so:
So guys, what do you think - is Amaya good for the game of poker or is it damaging it?