The natural evolutionary process at work
Nov. 23, 2011, Posted by Submission
For those who don’t know me or my history then let me say first and foremost that I have had over 20 years in the gambling industry in various capacities from croupier, blackjack player, poker player, writer and sports bettor. In that time I have read hundreds of books on gambling and spoken to or dealt with a very large number of professionals in many different fields.
It is obvious how much more sophisticated these people have become over the past five years and the average punter is just far more clued up now in all areas. Unfortunately this means that it is tougher to make bloody money because the betting firms and online card rooms are sure as hell aren’t going to make life easy for anyone…….why should they?
Some years ago I read an interview between a Las Vegas casino pit boss and a card counter who was known to him as a personal friend. The account was taken from the card counter who said that the pit boss stated that casinos didn’t dislike counters because they took money from them by card counting. The vast majority of counters were not good enough to do so and were recycling money but were making the casino money in other ways.
However the reason that they disliked the counters was to do with the fact that many of them resorted to cheating as a way to either beat the game or to lower variance when their normal game wasn’t good enough. When the casinos became far more sophisticated at spotting counters then life became a whole lot tougher for these people…….the result…….extinction or survival.
The problem comes when people put themselves into a position to depend on a certain avenue for their income or a big percentage of it and it then dries up. People with good alternative career prospects are not in the same situation but this is the natural knock on effect to what has happened in online poker. It rather worries me that there haven’t been as many cheating scandals as what there has been in terms of how many have hit the press.
In recessions then burglaries and all round theft and crime increases and is natural cause and effect. But there are literally millions upon millions of people playing online in what is now a very tough environment to make money at. I am not saying to look for Indians behind every bush but I am certainly saying that awareness needs to be raised in terms of looking for evidence of cheating. In my opinion the level of cheating online has to be higher than what it has ever been but finding out the truth may just prove to be very difficult. I’m afraid I simply don’t have enough faith in human nature to assume that when everyone finds winning money too tough that they just turn around and say “well…..that’s poker”.
-- Carl Sampson
Carl “The Dean” Sampson plays poker at www.pokerstars.co.uk