PokerStars “Sit-Out” Protest Passes Largely Unnoticed

PokerStars “Sit-Out” Protest Passes Largely UnnoticedIn response to a number of unpopular changes made by PokerStars since Amaya Gaming acquired the brand earlier this year, disgruntled regulars have been discussing ways in which they could show their grievances to the world’s biggest online poker room. One such response was subsequently formulated on the 2+2 forums, and involved organizing a “sit-out” protest.
The staged protest then took place on Wednesday, November 5th, and involved hundreds of PokerStars heads-up sit-n-go players, but in the end the day came and went without having any tangible effect  towards their goals. In fact, the “Sit-Out” even failed to illicit a response from PokerStars PR team within the 2+2 thread itself.
While PokerStars’ recent changes have invoked a harsh responses from numerous high-volume players, who perceive the announced rake increase as a “war on regs,” many others in the poker community seem either indifferent to the move, or, in the case of recreational players, actually welcome it. Many of these casual players seem pleased at the prospect of an exodus of online grinders from the site, who have been dominating PokerStars’ cash tables by multi-tabling and employing a tight, hyper-aggressive style of play.
Consequently, the rake increase controversy has suffered from a lack of a unanimous condemnation by the poker community, and there certainly seems to be little appetite for continuing the “Sit-Out” protests, a strategy which may have enjoyed limited success in 2012, but in today’s environment is likely to ultimately fail. As one 2+2 poster called 413AceKing wrote concerning forcing PokerStars to make a change:
“Yea, that’s just not how things work anymore.”
PokerStars has a virtual monopoly on the online poker industry, and while it can boast a 7-day average of 18,500 cash players according to PokerScout, the poker room’s nearest rivals can attract just one-tenth of that figure. In the past, however, the Scheinbergs’ remained responsive to player concerns and feedback, but with Amaya’s ownership regular players are now having to face a new reality.


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