Friday, October 13, 2006

Today's the Day

Yep, Friday is a sad day here in Hammerland, as President Bush is said to be signing the safe port act, including its pesky little rider outlawing the transfering of funds between online gaming sites and U.S. players, this morning. The marketing dwarf this morning says the Act is set to be signed at 10am ET today, which means that by the time most of you are reading this post, it will probably already be illegal for financial institutions to transfer funds from you (if you're in the U.S.) to an online poker site, or to withdraw money from an online poker site into your U.S. bank account. So now the fun part begins, as we wait and see who is really willing to put their money where their mouth is, and who is not. So far among the companies I am personally interested in, partypoker has bagged and has to win the #1 biggest pussy award from me. I mean, they are the leader in the U.S. online gambling market, and then they just up and pull out of the entire marketplace just like that, even before anyone else had announced similar intentions. I still can't believe that move, but let's be honest. The partypoker software has always sucked, and it's gotten worse these past several months, though I don't know why.

Which leads me to late last night, as I returned from baby duty once again at around 3:15am ET. Upon returning to the pc for the first time since auto-donking in the 20k and the WWdN Not due to baby waking issues, I logged on to my big poker sites of choice to do some business at each. First stop: partypoker. Full withdrawal of all funds left, which was only about $47 since I had already prepared for their pussiness last week. In fact, ironically I had to deposit the minimum $50 into partypoker just so that I would have enough to withdraw the minimum $50 to my Neteller account. So that is done. I will probably try to log in tonight after this thing becomes law just to see what happens, but as far as I'm concerned, partypoker and that bitchling 40k guaranteed tournament are dead to me. Dead. In the end my lifetime stats on the 40k are tremendous so I'm happy I got my shot in while I had the chance, but even if party someday returns (legally or otherwise) to the U.S. poker market, I'm done with them. I play against pussies, but I don't play with them. Eff partypoker. And you can tell them I said that.

Second stop last night: Neteller. In a strange last-minute decision, I've decided that for now, my best move is probably to keep my poker money in the poker sites, where I should be able to play with my money for at least some time as this whole "illegal" thing shakes itself out. So, I ended up making a nice-sized deposit from my bank account back into Neteller, a small portion of what I withdrew back to my bank account a couple of weeks back when this whole shizz hit the proverbial fan.

Next stop last night was pokerstars. Along with my theme of effing partypoker as I described above, I also want to reward the sites who are taking a stand and not abandoning their loyal customer base in the U.S., at least not without some kind of a fight. So, I put a nice deposit into both pokerstars, where I do a lot of my online poker playing already anyways. This way, as I said, I expect to be able to play with that money for some time, even without knowing what's going to happen with Neteller or any other money transfer mechanisms.

Last I moved on to full tilt, which as most of you know has already been my favorite online poker site for some time. And they are even cooler than pokerstars, because unlike stars who just announced a couple of days ago that they plan to stay in the U.S. for the time being, full tilt was really the first of the major sites to make that kind of a public stand against The Man, and for that I am very appreciative. And so, I rewarded them as well with a decent-sized deposit, on top of their very attractive 50% reload bonus up to $500 which I already took full advantange of earlier in the week.

So, for now, my bankroll is back on the two poker sites I plan to use for the time being. I'm not going to let either roll get too big, so if I have any other big wins I will certainly withdraw however I have to get that done, but for now what I have in pokerstars and full tilt should let me continue to play for some time. And, if my performance continues like it has thus far this year in the online poker world, I can hopefully generate more profits (and more withdrawals) without having to figure out how to get any more money into any of the sites I'll be playing at from now on.

One quick thing to note, in case anyone is interested in this stuff. I did go and attempt to sign up for a Firepay account using a Canadian mailing address (since nothing gets mailed to me if I'm only using electronic transfers to and from a bank). Unfortunately, Firepay required me to link up to a Canadian bank account then, which has different numbers and different standards than U.S. banks do, so I was unable to get that set up without having an actual account in an actual Canadian bank. I imagine one way to get around this online gaming funds transfer ban is to sign up for the poker sites using a non-U.S. address, and sign up for Neteller or Firepay with a non-U.S. bank account, and you should be good to go. Right? But so far, Firepay did not work without me having an actual Canadian bank account. Similarly, Neteller would not let me change my mailing address to a non-U.S. address without also chaning my funding bank account to a non-U.S. bank. So, no luck on those two fronts if anyone has been trying that so far. If anyone has other ideas that seem to be working or that might work, please let us know here!


Blogger Alceste said...

Looks like it's official.

I noticed you were identified as being from Toronto at the last wwdn. Did stars accept a po box address?

10:36 PM  
Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo said...

Nope, Alceste, I just logged into my pokerstars account and changed my mailing address. They don't check up on it, and since they never need to mail anything to me in hard copy (assuming I don't have checks mailed to me), I don't care that it's not a real address. If I need to have a check sent to me by pokerstars in the future, I will change it to anotehr Canadian address of a friend or something who can receive it for me.

11:22 PM  
Blogger Iakaris aka I.A.K. said...

I did alot of mulling over about Stars and couldn't convince myself they have the stomach for the fight based on their limp wristed declaration to stay. Thus, I didn't put new money there.

I figure if I HAVE to I can just transfer to friends on FT who have accounts on Stars and Tilt and settle up that way. Either that or I better win a blogger tourney soon on Stars.

Too bad you cant move MATH to FT so I don't have to play under financial stress...

Your friend, Iak.

12:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I like your approcah Hoy. I also have a zero balance at Neteller right now. Put all my money at FTP, UB and PS. These accounts seem safe for now.

1:08 AM  
Blogger Matt Silverthorn said...

Personally, I've pulled everything out. Firepay was my only option to move funds around, as Neteller will not do business with Maryland residents. I have no idea why. I'm going to put most of it in my savings account for now and see if any of this gets resolved soon or another company pops up that will let me do business with them. I don't see the point in playing if I can't get my money out.

If worst comes to worst, I may make a semi-regular trip to AC for some live games. There's always stupid people playing at casinos.

2:19 AM  
Blogger slb159 said...

I used my firepay account for the reload bonus on FT earlier this week and had no problem. Haven't tried since though.
I do have a neteller account though, if worse comes to worse (I hear they're staying aboard). I'll let you know if I run into any issues.

Oh one more thing:
"so if I have any other big wins"...
Dude, you're shortchanging yourself. Next big one is right around the corner.

2:36 AM  
Blogger chipper said...

The bill was signed on Friday the 13th - how appropriate. Certainly reeks of bad luck for poker. But you're right - POKER LIVES ON!!!

Stars and FT have my $$ now. Let the games continue!

2:50 AM  
Blogger Blinders said...

Your money is safe in the sites and Neteller. You can always request a payout by check, and check processing is not covered in the act. You can get an ATM with Neteller, and get your funds out that way if required. Neteller is publicly traded. They are not going to cut and run and not allow US citizens to get their money out. They would be litigated out of business if they tried. Bottom line is Neteller funds are safe. FullTilt funds are safe. PokerStars probably safe with the segregated accounts (ie will not go bankrupt if everyone requests payouts at once.)

Why not move the MATH to FT? Make it a $26 token.

6:03 AM  
Blogger Bloody P said...

I decided to put a fitty spot into Full Tilt AFTER the bill was signed into law.

Eff 'em.

10:27 PM  
Blogger Irongirl01 said...

Hey Hoy:

I have a legitimate Toronto address I can use too (actually several-Heck i can use Australia too).

I have an email into an old friend in California who is a computer wiz and plays poker to. Im trying to see if there is some kind of device that can be installed that scrambles where the computer really is originating out of. Anyone given any thought to that?

For example would a Foreigner traveling in the US with a laptop be banned from playing online poker via wifi from the US?

Stuck inside of the USA with the Poker blues again.

1:57 AM  

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