Sunday was supposed to be the day where players from the US could see that it was back at a state similar to where it was pre black-Friday. The Winning Poker Network was going to host their $1,000,000 guaranteed tournament, the first tournament with a million guaranteed since Pokerstars, Full Tilt and UB/AP was cut off from serving games to the Americans.
The tournament had a $540 buy-in and five hours of late registration for them to try and cover as much as the prize pool as possible and give as many players as possible the chance to participate. With several hundred players qualifying through the many satellites as well as many just buying in directly, the tournament was a success – or at least it seemed that way.
It didn’t take long before issues with players disconnecting started hitting the network, an issue which has caused many problems lately in most of the biggest poker networks and sites. Players could see their cards, but got their hands auto-folded, others got logged out and couldn’t log back in and many other issues were occurring, eventually forcing them to stop the tournament after five hours and several breaks.
Americas Cardroom, one of the leading US-friendly poker rooms, send out an email to their players last week where they talked about the disconnection issue, telling players that they had installed new feature which allowed them to pause tournaments when disconnection issues were occurring, allowing them to continue the tournament once the issue had been resolved.
Unfortunately it wasn’t enough for them to be able to continue the tournament, having had 3-4 extra breaks of 15 minutes throughout the tournament. The tournament was cancelled with a message on the tables, stating the reason why it was cancelled and telling players that they would all have their buy-in refunded.
While players are not happy with the fact that the tournament couldn’t be played, many are also quite angry about having played five hours and build up a stack, only to receive a refund of their buy-in. On the other hand, it is not fair to those who was out due to disconnection issues to not give them anything at all.
The security issue at hand on the poker sites and networks seems to a threat they need to take more seriously in the online poker industry, as it has caused problems for so long now. We are talking millions in revenues they have managed to destroy for the sites and in one case, players were logged into other players accounts and could see their private details – on Carbon Poker.