All About Skins

dj11

dj11

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I start this thread, which hopefully eventually will provide all readers with some important info. Please feel free to correct any assumptions made. To start this off it will at first be full of assumptions, and thin on documentation.

What is a Poker Skin?

As currently understood it is one site, using their Web Site name along with a separate 'Poker Engine', from another site to provide games at a common table.

I tend to think of it as a Room in the Round. Picture a huge parking lot, with a circular building with many doors. Over each door you find a sign with the name of that door and its associated web site. You pay to get in (one way or another) and find a room full of poker games. You sit at a table where the other players may or may not have come through the same door as you.

Example 1;

Absolute /Vegas 247. Both use the existing Absolute 'Poker Engine'. For non special events you could join into a tourney or ring game and play against players who sat down at that table after entering via either door (Absolute Poker or Vegas247). Since Ultimatebet and AP are owned by the same folks, it might be of note here that the first version of CardPlayer magazines playing site was using a UB engine. CardPlayer is now supporting a beta for a new site called Spade Club.

Example 2;

The Cake network. Cake, Sportsbook, Players Only, and apparently several others. Aside from special events (hosted by and for a particular subset of players) the tables will be mixed with players who entered via different doors.

Example 3;

There were many other skin sites before the UIGEA. Not all of the skins worked like the above two examples. In some cases the 'Poker Engine' was all that the sites had in common.

There are peculiar issues involved with skins.

1. A player that you know from one site could leave a table, and come back to that same table as a different entity.

Please correct or add anything you know here.

Add complete 'networks' if you can. Much of this info may already be compiled somewhere, post if you know where. My gut feeling is that for the most part, most sites would prefer to keep us all in the dark about this.

If you think of a particular issue, post that.
 
nevadanick

nevadanick

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Interesting - VERY interesting. Would this be like opening multiple accounts - in reverse ??
 
DaFrench1

DaFrench1

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If you look at sharkscope.com, do a search, and then pull down the list of poker sites. You will see that they are listed according to the network they share.

i.e. the Merge network comprises of Carbon Poker, Poker Duke, Nordic Poker and Poker.com.

Is that what you were referring to?

As far as I know though all skin sites have in their Terms and conditions that you can only have one ID on the network, as well as their skin. And if you were using the same PC/ISP it would be pretty easy to track by the network gaming provider.
 
reglardave

reglardave

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If you look at Sharkscope.com, do a search, and then pull down the list of poker sites. You will see that they are listed according to the network they share.

i.e. the Merge network comprises of Carbon Poker, Poker Duke, Nordic Poker and Poker.com.

Is that what you were referring to?

As far as I know though all skin sites have in their Terms and conditions that you can only have one ID on the network, as well as their skin. And if you were using the same PC/ISP it would be pretty easy to track by the network gaming provider.

I have seperate identities at Carbon and Poker Nordica, and not only is the IP adress the same, but they're listed with the same email address. I get regular newsletters. promos, etc from each seperately, and am working toward deposit bonuses both places.
 
DaFrench1

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I have seperate identities at Carbon and Poker Nordica, and not only is the IP adress the same, but they're listed with the same email address. I get regular newsletters. promos, etc from each seperately, and am working toward deposit bonuses both places.

Yeah, I had something like 3 ID's on Microgaming though I only use one now. I don't know much about the sites you mentioned, but it would obviously be in your interest to check the t&c's. It would be lame to get a big cash and then get it pulled because of something like that.
 
nevadanick

nevadanick

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Yeah, I had something like 3 ID's on Microgaming though I only use one now. I don't know much about the sites you mentioned, but it would obviously be in your interest to check the t&c's. It would be lame to get a big cash and then get it pulled because of something like that.

Best advice this week. Don't think it says anywhere that THEY will check for you. Once you get that big win, you can bet they will be checking. Multiple accounts located - big win bye-bye.
 
dj11

dj11

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Seems pretty shady for them to ever pull something like that without ever telling their players they are a network, and such and such a site is part of that network. This info is gleaned from detective work, not public proclamations by any of the afore mentioned sites.

In a court of law in the US, I feel good that the sites would lose.
 
Boltneck

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I can only speak from personal experience, but a while ago I systematically worked my way through all of the sites on the Crypto network. I earned the deposit match bonus, cashed out then moved on to the next site with no problems at all.

I claim no legal knowledge (and shamefully admit to not fully reading the T's + C's) but if I am signing up to PokerPlex (for example) they are taking my rake, and they are giving me the bonus. My "contract" is with them. It would not appear to me that the sharing of a network is of relevance. Indeed, on the Crypto network, I used exactly the same details (including screen name) at all sites. Each site within the network competes with each other offering different bonus's and bonus structures. Given that they don't say that they are part of a Network (at least not in any kind of prominent way) or what other sites are part of the same Network, it would be pretty underhand to refuse to pay out.

Let's I made a deal with "Rent a Party" the caterers (fictitious company name) for my 50th birthday party, and they offered me a 20% introductory discount. Now lets say I made a deal with "The Party Company" for a Christmas party, and they also offered a 20% discount. Lets say they both hired the same venue to hold the party. Could they refuse to honour the discount because I had used the same venue previously? I doubt it. Who they choose to pay for the use of the premises as part of the package that they are offering to me is their choice, not mine. Okay, it's a crap analogy, but you see the parallel that I'm drawing.

I would say worst case scenario is that they would with hold the bonus. Most sites that I have played say something like "we encourage people to take part in our promotions, but we reserve the right to withdraw the facility if we think it being abused".
 
Egon Towst

Egon Towst

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Probably the largest and most complex network is Ipoker. This is where I play most.

Ipoker has more than 50 skins. It is perhaps more correct to describe them as "portals", because are run by separate companies which share the game software. This is therefore different from the Absolute/Vegas247 model. Those really are just skins and are nearly identical apart from the colour scheme.

On Ipoker, the major sites have their own games and tournaments, exclusive to their customers and running alongside the network games which can be accessed from any of the portals. This means that it makes perfect sense to have accounts at more than one. I have four.

The rules there permit this, the only proviso being that you cannot use two different ID`s at the same time, presumably to prevent people from making multiple entries into the networked games.
 
DaFrench1

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Seems pretty shady for them to ever pull something like that without ever telling their players they are a network, and such and such a site is part of that network. This info is gleaned from detective work, not public proclamations by any of the afore mentioned sites.

In a court of law in the US, I feel good that the sites would lose.


I think that the dead giveaway is when you play a site that looks exactly like another site. You don't really need to be Columbo to work out they are the same network. I get where you're coming from though about the lack of disclosure about certain practices, all too prevalent in the online gaming industry.

But actually skin sites could be the safest option for gaming, as long as the source can be trusted then you should be safe with whatever skin you choose to play from that source. The skin or portal company is just processing and administering your account and your payments (this is where discrepancies between portals can occur) and the network is running the games (including the ones created by the skins). I think its probably a good thing that the two are kept apart (taking the money and running the games), it removes the temptation and ability to rig games. For this reason it actually makes sense to be more wary of sites that are running proprietry software, because anything is possible there.
 
nevadanick

nevadanick

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Frankly, this scares the beejeebers out of me and is just a few more reasons for me to NEVER deposit cash online. I guess if you are comfortable playing the guessing end of the shell game, more power to ya.

Corporations of all nature throughout the world have proven time and time again that multiple identities and parallel operations are just too easily manipulated against the consumer in nothing more than the name of their greed and market share.

Guess the caveat here is - let the player beware.
 
DaFrench1

DaFrench1

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Frankly, this scares the beejeebers out of me and is just a few more reasons for me to NEVER deposit cash online. I guess if you are comfortable playing the guessing end of the shell game, more power to ya.

Corporations of all nature throughout the world have proven time and time again that multiple identities and parallel operations are just too easily manipulated against the consumer in nothing more than the name of their greed and market share.

Guess the caveat here is - let the player beware.


Fair point. Could be safer doesn't guarantee it is!
 
Boltneck

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This may be easier. I see the network as the brewery and the skins are the pubs selling the beer!


Now why didn't I think of that - it's most out of character for me to fail to bring beer into any type of situation!
 
dj11

dj11

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Some of the 'Networks' I've found.

When I search for Absolute networks or skins, I only get ways to make the screen less ugly. These will give you a nint about who is on a particular network. I looked for Crypto, but the info is old, seems to be CryptoLogic which links to InterCasino with no list of alternate names.

iPoker.com

Merge Gaming Network - Online poker software provider

Cake Poker Network
 
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