The Archives Of The GGPoker Blog – Part 18
Part 18 – August 1st, 2020 through October 15th, 2020
Originally posted: August 21st, 2020
The Good Pro, The Regular Pro, and The Bad Pro
Poker is a zero-sum game. There will always be winners and losers.
A majority of consistent winners will eventually turn into poker pros. This natural emergence of professional poker players has been going on ever since poker existed.
GGPoker doesn’t want to change this.
What we do want to change is how the pros affect the overall poker ecosystem. We need to ensure that a healthy ecosystem is maintained. It’s a simple business: if we don’t, there will be no games for anyone to play.
Winners will keep on playing, but losing players will eventually quit. Games slowly die and you lose the balance of your ecosystem.
As a poker operator, we deal with pros daily. Not all pros have an equal effect on poker ecology. Here’s how we view the pro ecology:
The Good Pro
GGPoker views a good pro as someone who contributes to the poker market’s growth. Successful poker players will naturally get the spotlight of the media and attain wealth. We hope these players eventually work towards getting more people into the market, just like Michael Jordan did for basketball.
A good pro could be a streamer, vlogger, caster, or even a Twitter account with numerous followers. They could be someone showing up on mainstream media or a popular podcast. They could be an influential speaker at various conferences. They could also be someone opening up a poker academy for newcomers to learn poker.
The important thing is that good pros utilize whatever strength they have to help grow the poker market that brought them their fame and wealth.
GGPoker will collaborate with good pros as much as possible to grow the poker market together. We will support them financially, help them get more famous, offer stability, and eventually might make them a great ambassador of the game.
The Regular Pro
A regular pro mainly focuses on their gameplay and win rate. They continuously study their own game, improve, and crush the field.
From our standpoint, there is nothing wrong with this as long as they follow our terms and conditions.
We are happy to see poker players grow and refine their game, and know that as long as there are losers in poker, there will be winners.
The Bad Pro
A bad pro focuses on manufacturing unfair advantages over their opponents and exploiting other perceived weaknesses.
During gameplay, they might use real-time solvers, use advanced charts, data mine, bumhunt, collude, ghost, and so on. Bad pros bully and harass opponents, eventually driving away honest opponents, and see the games dry up.
GGPoker is focused on making poker fun and accessible for as many players as possible. We’re driven to make playing on our software a great experience.
That’s why we roll out features like Snapcam – express yourself and have a good time at the tables, win or lose. This will keep players coming back for another game in the future.
We understand the activities of bad pros are not illegal by law. However, as a poker operator entitled to protect the game and ecology, we define these activities as cheating and strictly punish them within our rights.
GGPoker needs to manage these kinds of pros and we do everything we can to make sure everyone plays in a fair environment – this helps ensure there are great games to play each time a player logs back into GGPoker, today, tomorrow and into the future.
Originally posted: September 8th, 2020
Nearly $150 Million in Cash Won During WSOP Online Series 2020
Record-breaking online tournament series awards 54 WSOP gold bracelets and crowns a 2020 Main Event winner
The international WSOP Online 2020 tournament series, played on GGPoker, concluded today. A number of long-standing poker records were smashed over the course of the 54 event series–including the largest prize pool ever for an online tournament.
Highlights of WSOP Online 2020 include:
- The largest online poker tournament ever: $27,559,500 in Event #77: WSOP Online $5K Main Event
- The biggest online poker tournament prize ever awarded: $3,904,685 to Stoyan Madanzhiev, winner of Event 77: WSOP Online $5K Main Event
- The most entries ever for a WSOP tournament: 44,576 in Event #71: BIG 50
- Total prizes paid across all 54 tournaments: $147,789,550 (average prize pool: $2,736,844)
- Total number of WSOP Online 2020 tournament entries: 239,754
- Number of nationalities represented across the entire WSOP Online player base: 166
- Amount raised for Caesars Cares charity: $354,756 ($257,853 raised by the worldwide poker community, $96,903 donated by GGPoker)
- Number of tournaments with a prize pool of at least $1,000,000: 45
- Number of tournaments with a prize pool of at least $5,000,000: 5
- Number of tournaments with a prize pool of at least $10,000,000: 2
- Number of tournaments with more than 10,000 entries: 5
- Multiple event winners: Alex Stasiak (winner of Events #33 and 52)
- Multiple final tables played: 39 players made multiple final tables, with five players making three final tables each (Michael Watson, Paul Teoh, Ajay Chabra, Bruno Albuquerque and Connor Drinan)
- Female event winners: 3 (Kristen Bicknell – Event # 44, Thi Truong – Event #74 and Melika Razavi – Event #82)
- Number of players that cashed more than 10 times across all 54 events: 281
- Number of players that won at least $100,000 in cash: 203
The flagship World Series of Poker (WSOP) live poker tournament in Las Vegas was postponed due to the public health emergency and as a result, an online series of events took place at GGPoker from July 19 through September 6. In total, 54 WSOP bracelets were claimed in GGPoker’s WSOP Online 2020 series. The tournaments marked the first time that players located outside the U.S. were able to compete for official WSOP bracelets online.
“Obviously the events of 2020 have been unprecedented, and hosting the WSOP Online series at GGPoker wasn’t in our plans at the start of the year,” said Ty Stewart, Executive Director of the World Series of Poker. “But going online has been a wonderful experience, with tens of thousands of new players all over the world able to experience some of WSOP magic that they might have been otherwise unable to – we’re delighted that the series has been such a resounding success!”
The WSOP Online 2020 series was extensively covered in the media, with tournament action regularly broadcast on GGPoker.TV and Poker Central, and tournament reports published on PokerNews and elsewhere.
“For 50 years, the WSOP has been the gold standard in the industry,” said Steve Preiss, Head of Poker Operations at GGPoker. “By introducing features like SnapCam and day 2 staking, GGPoker’s entire team worked tirelessly to bring our players a fun, unique experience just like they’d expect at the live WSOP.”
The WSOP Online 2020 Main Event was won by Bulgarian-native Stoyan Madanzhiev, who claimed a record-setting $3.9M prize. Other event winners included GGPoker ambassador Fedor Holz and well-known poker players Juha Helppi, Roberto Romanello, Kristen Bicknell, Daniel Dvoress, Eoghan O’Dea, David Peters,Christian Rudolph. Notable players that participated in WSOP events included soccer superstar Neymar, former world champion boxers Riddick Bowe & Amir Khan, tennis legend Boris Becker, Australian cricket player Shane Warne, mixed martial artists Elias Theodorou & Patrick Côté and former elite soccer player Andriy Shevchenko.
“I’m personally very proud to be part of the effort that brought such a special WSOP series to the entire world,” said GGPoker ambassador, Daniel Negreanu. “The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, and we even got to break a lot of poker records along the way!”
Originally posted: September 23rd, 2020
GGPoker & Battle of Malta Announcd $3,000,000 Main Event
Popular live poker festival to be hosted at GGPoker this November
GGPoker and Battle of Malta organizers Casino Malta by Olympic Casino today announce that they have agreed to host the 2020 iteration of the popular festival on the global-facing poker network. The series will take place from November 1 through November 22 and be headlined by a $550 Main Event, which boasts $3,000,000 in guaranteed cash prizes.
The much-anticipated festival was initially scheduled to return to Malta next month but was postponed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Designed for low- to mid-stakes poker players, the Battle of Malta is one of Europe’s biggest poker events and one synonymous with fun and the lighter side of the world’s favorite card game. Last year’s Battle of Malta Main Event attracted 4,657 entries and generated a €2,258,645 prize pool.
“I’m genuinely excited to announce that the Battle of Malta 2020 will be hosted at GGPoker,” said John Scanlon, Director of Live Events & Sponsorships at GGPoker. “It’s an honor to be unveiled as the organizers’ preferred online partner, and I’m confident that this year’s Battle of Malta will be bigger and better than ever!”
“It is with a heavy heart that Casino Malta had to postpone the much-awaited Battle of Malta live event, but we’re elated to partner with such a prestigious brand as GGPoker,” said Slawomir Świtalski, General Manager of Casino Malta. “We look forward to seeing everyone in Malta in 2021 for a very special Battle of Malta.”
Further details on Battle of Malta 2020, including a full schedule, will be released shortly.
New GGPoker players are eligible to claim the poker room’s Welcome Bonus, earn even more rewards with the Honeymoon for Newcomers promotion and automatically join GGPoker’s Fish Buffet loyalty program, with regular cash prizes on offer.
Originally posted: September 30th, 2020
Battle Against Real-Time Assistance
At GGPoker Network (‘GGPN’), we firmly believe Poker to be a battle of wits that is meant to be experienced without the use of any Real-Time Assistance (‘RTA’) whatsoever. To this end, we were among the first to prohibit heads-up displays, and we have been quick to ban players in the past that were using prohibited software. While there will always be deceitful individuals trying to cheat the game and steal from their fellow players, our Security Team continues to be on the cutting edge with regards to detection and protection and maintains a zero-tolerance policy to Real-Time Assistance.
Recently, a high-profile RTA case was brought to light. We have re-dedicated our efforts to combatting RTA and have swiftly adopted enhanced RTA detection methods and improved our internal processes for handling these cheaters. Although there are public concerns that RTA is an imminent threat to the status quo in that it is undetectable, that is patently false. Our Security Team is fully aware of the different ways that RTA is being used, and we want to emphasize that RTA is detectable.
Through our upgraded detection methods, we have discovered a small group of RTA users on GGPN. We have taken immediate action on those accounts as we continue to develop our processes. The measures we have taken are commensurate to the frequency and severity of RTA use.
- 13 accounts have been banned and $1,175,305.43 confiscated (to be returned to players)
- 27 accounts have been banned with no confiscation
- 40 accounts have been issued warnings
Massive increases in data analysis are a big part of our new process. We also want to emphasize another critical factor. Our Team deeply analyzes Poker hands based on our proprietary algorithms with the assistance of some of the brightest Poker minds. Their insights and contributions continually improve our algorithms. Through this process, we can quickly establish whether GTO Poker play has occurred. Once we have made this determination, we look at a variety of other factors to determine whether said GTO play involved the use of RTA.
In addition to our technical enhancements, we are making it known to RTA cheaters that GGPN is no place for them. Henceforth, any cheaters found using RTA to gain an advantage will be faced with our strictest measures – Permanent Ban and Confiscation of Funds.
Further to our cause, we have implemented a community-focused reporting system to expedite the removal of cheaters. Players are now able to report any suspicious activity during gameplay, streamlining the reporting process. A report can be submitted during play via the Hand History page or anytime via Pokercraft. These reports will allow us to act more quickly against suspected RTA and other cheaters and will provide better context for us to base our investigations on.
We realize that these are merely the first steps in our quest to free online Poker from RTA. GGPN will continue to fight to provide a fair and enjoyable experience at our Poker tables. We will use all resources at our disposal to rid our Network of undesirable players. We forge on knowing we have the Poker community’s full support and we will spare no effort in tackling RTA as well as other cheating methods.
Please note that we do not intend on releasing detailed investigation reports going forward unless circumstances drastically change and it is warranted.
Originally posted: October 14th, 2020
Important Information for German Players: Changes From October 15
Some changes are coming into effect for GGPoker players in Germany from October 15, 2020.
The GGPoker app will be available at https://ggpoker.de, which all German players will use.
German players will still be part of the global player pool, so your poker experience will not change.
Players on GGPoker.de will have the following unique features & account changes:
- Panic-Button – Players can click the Panic-Button at any time to trigger an instant 24-hour timeout. Doing this will prevent a player from logging in for the next 24 hours
- Casino Games – Players will be unable to access casino games, live dealer games or slots
- Seat Selection – Players will not be able to choose specific seats at cash game tables. You will be assigned a random seat based on the buy-in you have selected. Players will be unable to enter VIP or Short Deck tables until this feature is available for those game types
- 4 Table Maximum – Players will be able to play a maximum of 4 tables at the same time.
- Deposit Limits – All players will have a deposit limit of EUR 1,000 (USD 1,150) in a rolling 30-day period. Players will have the ability to lower this limit if they wish
- Win/Loss Summary – Players will be shown a summary of their wins and losses when logging into the GGPoker app
- Reality Check – Players will get a reminder pop up to inform them of how long they have been playing after every 60 minutes of play
- Poker Wallet – This will now be denominated in EUR
All GGPoker.de players will be required to confirm their identity by uploading the following documents before they will be permitted to play:
- Proof of Identity – A valid Passport, Driving License or National ID card (front and back), showing all four corners of the document. Expired documents will not be accepted.
- Proof of Address – A utility bill or bank statement as a proof of address document showing your name and registered address. The document must be issued within the last 6 months. Please, note that screenshots will not be accepted. Online documents must be provided in PDF format and pictures of a paper document in JPEG.
Ab dem 15. Oktober werden einige Änderungen für GGPoker-Spieler aus Deutschland in Kraft treten.
Die GGPoker App, die alle deutschen Spieler verwenden werden, wird unter https://ggpoker.de verfügbar sein.
Die Spieler aus Deutschland werden weiterhin Teil des globalen Spielerpools sein. An Ihrem Pokerspiel wird sich demnach nichts ändern.
Die Spieler auf GGPoker.de werden die folgenden einzigartigen Funktionen und Kontoänderungen haben:
- Panik-Knopf – Spieler können jederzeit auf den Panik-Knopf klicken, um eine 24-Stunden-Kontosperrung auszulösen. Dies wird den Spieler daran hindern, sich in den nächsten 24 Stunden einzuloggen.
- Casino Spiele – Spieler werden nicht in der Lage sein auf Casino Spiele, Live-Dealer-Spiele oder Slots zuzugreifen.
- Platzwahl – Spieler können an Cash-Game-Tischen keine bestimmten Sitzplätze auswählen. Sie werden einen zufälligen Sitzplatz zugeteilt bekommen, der auf ihrem ausgewählten Buy-In basiert. Die Spieler können keine VIP oder Short Deck Tische auswählen. Dies wird solange der Fall sein bis diese Funktion den genannten Spielarten zur Verfügung steht.
- 4 Tische maximal zulässig – Spieler können maximal an 4 Tischen gleichzeitig spielen.
- Einzahlungsbeschränkungen – Alle Spieler werden ein Einzahlungslimit von 1000 EUR (1150 USD) binnen eines fortlaufenden 30-Tage Zeitraums haben.
- Gewinn-/Verlustzusammenfassung – Den Spielern wird jedes Mal dann eine Zusammenfassung ihrer Gewinne und Verluste angezeigt, wenn sie sich in die GGPoker App einloggen.
- Reality Check – Die Spieler werden alle 60 Minuten eine Erinnerung in einem Pop-Up-Fenster erhalten, die sie darüber informiert, wie lange sie gespielt haben.
- Poker Wallet – Dies wird nun in EUR angezeigt.
Bevor es Ihnen erlaubt ist zu spielen, müssen alle GGPoker.de Spieler ihre Identität bestätigen. Dies erfolgt, indem sie folgende Dokumente hochladen oder einreichen:
- Identitätsnachweis – Ein gültiger Reisepass, Führerschein oder Personalausweis (Vorder- und Rückseite) mit allen vier Ecken des Dokuments sichtbar. Abgelaufene Dokumente werden nicht akzeptiert.
- Adressnachweis – Eine Strom-, Wasser-, Gas-, oder Handyrechnung oder ein Kontoauszug als Adressnachweis, die klar und deutlich Ihren vollen Namen und registrierte Adresse aufweisen. Das Dokument muss innerhalb der letzten 6 Monate ausgestellt worden sein. Bitte beachten Sie, dass Screenshots nicht akzeptiert werden. Digitale Dokumente müssen in PDF-Format und Fotos von Papierdokumenten in JPEG-Format eingereicht werden.