Poker in the News — Weekly Round-up for April 21, 2018

By Brian Cullingworth, Last updated Apr 21, 2018

The Demise Of The Poker Face?

Developing AI technology will soon see right through you

The recent TED conference in Vancouver showcased some big ideas, among them new technology that will eventually be able to assess an individual’s true reaction behind the public face displayed.

The AFP news agency reported on an interview with Dolby Laboratories chief scientist Poppy Crum, who said that sensors combined with artificial intelligence (AI) can reveal whether someone is lying, infatuated, or poised for violence.

“It is the end of the poker face,” Crum said. “We broadcast our emotions. We will know more about each other than we ever have.”

Crum detailed various physical signs that cannot be fully controlled, including eye dilation, which reveals how hard a brain is working, and heat radiating from the skin signaling stress or even romantic pique.

The amount of carbon dioxide exhaled can signal how angry someone, or a crowd, is becoming, whilst micro-expressions and chemicals in breath can reveal feelings and emotions.

The timing of someone’s speech can expose whether they are at risk of dementia, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, or bipolar disorder, according to neuroscientist Crum, and brainwaves can indicate whether someone’s attention is elsewhere in a room, regardless of the fact their gaze is locked on the person in front of them.

Crum says that technology exists to read such cues and, combined with artificial intelligence can analyse patterns and factor in context, magnifying empathy and creating a bridge over the emotional divide.

The neuroscientist gave examples where the ability to read a person’s true feelings could be useful in a medical, educational, social and enforcement context, but cautioned that forward thinking is necessary to ensure that this sort of technology is used for good rather than evil.

“I am not looking to create a world where our inner lives are ripped open, but I am looking to create a world where we can care about each other more effectively,” she told AFP.

“It is something people need to realize is here and is going to happen; so let’s make it happen in a way we have control over. We will be able to know more about each other than we ever have. Let’s use that for the right reasons rather than the wrong ones.”

Schindler Wins Partypoker Live Millions Super High Roller

Euro 1.75 million pay day is Schindler’s second biggest career win

US poker pro Jake Schindler (28) has joined the ranks of highly successful international poker players with a Euro 1.75 million first prize in the Euro 101,000 PartyPoker Live Millions Super High Roller in Barcelona.

The prize is eclipsed only by the young pro’s $3.6 million second placing in the 2017 Super High Roller Bowl and brings Schindler’s career earnings to almost $18 million.

The 48-strong field generated a prize pool of Euro 4,656,000 and included notable names like Mikita Badziakouski, Koray Aldemir, Dominik Nitsche, Jason Koon, Steffen Sontheimer, Erik Seidel, Bryn Kenney, Schindler held the lead as the final table of six formed and managed to maintain supremacy through to the heads up, where he faced the formidable UK Stephen Chidwick with a slight chip lead.

It was the start of a two-hour exhibition of aggressive but disciplined and highly skilled poker as two professionals fought for the big money. On several occasions Chidwick came dangerously close to taking the lead from Schindler, but never quite made it. By the final hand the American held a 3 to 2 advantage which he managed to leverage into a victory.

Chidwick claimed a well-deserved second placing prize of Euro 1,100,000, whilst the other cash outs included:

  • Jean-Noel Thorel Euro 726,000
  • Jason Koon Euro 500,000
  • Bryn Kenney Euro 340,000
  • Erik Seidel Euro 240,000

Partypoker Barcelona Main Event Prize Pool Soars Past Guarantee

1,175 entries create a prize pool of Euro 1,397,500

PartyPoker will be pleased with the popularity of its Euro 10,300 buy-in Live Millions Grand Final Main Event in Barcelona this weekend; as the starting flights ended it became clear that at 1,175 entries, the prize pool has soared to Euro 11,397,500, comfortably past the Euro 10 million PP put up as a guarantee.

At the close of Day 1d just 87 players remained, with US poker pro Anthony Zinno holding the chip lead with just short of 9 million chips, pursued by Kenneth Smaron (8.52 million) and Marco Fontanella (8.48 million), Other top names in the game with healthy chip stacks include UK ace Sam Trickett, German pro Dominik Nitsche, Roberto Romanello and Jason Koon.

Good News For Poker Fans As Partypoker Lowers Fees

Online poker provider announces that it is to introduce a 40 percent to 60 percent reduction for bounty MTTs

PartyPoker m.d. Tom Waters announced over the weekend that PartyPoker is to lower fees in selected real money online poker tourneys, specifically removing rake on the bounty element from all Knockout events starting Sunday, May 6th.

The move represents a 40 percent to 60 percent reduction for bounty MTTs, the company claims.

Poker fans will have noticed that that is the date on which the PartyPoker $40 million guaranteed Powerfest series commences.

In a statement accompanied by a detailed schedule here: Waters explained: “Since PKO tournaments (MTTs) were launched, there has been much debate in the online poker world as to whether it is fair on players for online poker sites to apply additional rake to the bounty element of buy-ins in PKO MTTs, instead of just applying rake to the portion of the buy-in that goes directly into the main prize pool.

“For example, should the rake for a $22 PKO MTT be $1 or $2?

“After reviewing feedback from the poker community and lobbying from Patrick Leonard, we will remove rake on the bounty element on all our PKO MTTs with effect from Sunday 6th May, in time for our Powerfest PKO events. We will hold this policy for six months with the intention to make this a permanent reduction to our pricing structure. We have over 350 PKO MTTs per week with guarantees of over $4 million, so clearly, we will need players continued support to remain competitive revenue wise with other online poker sites.

“What does this mean for players?

“Players will now be paying less rake and their bounties will be bigger, whilst the total buy-in will remain the same so that players can still use their existing MTT tickets that they have won in satellites for PKO MTTs.

“The table below compares our current buy-ins and rake, alongside the new reduced rake structure. As you can see, this is a 40 percent to 60 percent reduction for bounty MTTs, depending on the buy-in level.

“This also means that the value of bounties will increase by between 4 percent and 12 percent as the old rake amount will be added to bounties won by players.”

The announcement triggered lively exchanges by players on the TwoplusTwo forum here:

Final Table Forms At Party Poker Live Millions Main Event

Big money already locked up by eight finalists

Saturday saw the final table of eight set in the Euro 10,300 buy-in 2018 Party Poker Live Millions Grand Final Main Event in Barcelona, with the eight finalists already assured $225,000 each, and the chance to ultimately walk away with a main prize of Euro 1.7 million.

1,175 entries were recorded in the event, creating a prize pool of Euro 11,397,500.

The field on Day 3 of the event included big names like Johnny Lodden, Sam Trickett, Mustapha Kanit, Davidi Kitai, Sam Greenwood, Patrick Bruel, Sergey Lebedev, Philipp Gruissem, Jack Salter, Anton Wigg, Byron Kaverman, Sean Winter and Morten Mortensen.

Canadian pro Pascal Lefrancois holds the chip lead going into the final day of play Sunday, sitting behind a pile of 248.4 million chips but pursued by the formidable German poker pro Dominik Nitsche (232.9 million), Jan-Eric Schwippert (216.3 million) and Diogo Veiga (213.8 million).

Other final tablers include Triple Crown champion and Euro 25,500 Super High Roller II winner Davidi Kitai (91.1 million), Thomas Boivin (66.5 million), Euro

101,000 Super High Roller runner-up Stephen Chidwick (65.2 million) and Adam Owen (41.6 million).

Canadian Victory In Partypoker Main Event In Barcelona (Update)

Euro 1.7 million pay day for Canadian poker pro Pascal Lefrancois

Canadian poker pro Pascal Lefrancois (31) is Euro 1.7 million wealthier this morning after his weekend victory in the Euro 10,300 buy-in 2018 PartyPoker Live Millions Grand Final Main Event.

It is his biggest career earning yet, and a record winner’s prize for the Casino Barcelona, where the action took place.

The French Canadian professional player dominated much of the play, holding the chip lead at the end of Day 2 and retaining it into the final table (see previous InfoPowa report).

In an exciting finale, Lefrancois took a significant chip lead into the heads up against British poker pro Adam Owen, only to find himself in the fight of his life as the Brit responded with controlled but effective aggression to even the stacks and at one stage, actually take the chip lead.

Lefrancois remained disciplined and calm, however, taking back the lead and ultimately sending the Brit home with the runner up prize of Euro 1.3 million his best career pay day yet.

Even third-placed UK pro Stephen Chidwick finished in seven figure territory, claiming Euro 1 million of the gigantic Euro 11,397,500 prize pool generated by 1,175 entries, many of whom were leading international poker professionals.

Other final table cashes included:

  • Dominik Nitsche Euro 800,000
  • Jan-Eric Schwippert Euro 602,500
  • Diogo Veiga Euro 450,000
  • Davidi Kitai Euro 325,000
  • Thomas Boivin Euro 225,000

Pokerstars Counts The Success Of Its First Shared Liquidity S.C.O.O.P.

37,000 unique entries across 120 scheduled tournaments as Euro 10 million guarantees are easily covered

PokerStars has continued its shared player pool success with the debut Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP) for France and Spain, which the company reports surpassed its record-breaking Euro 10 million guarantee in shared liquidity markets by more than Euro 1.7million, reaching Euro 11,768,035.

The series ran from March 25-April 9 and attracted more than 37,000 unique entries across 120 scheduled tournaments, the first time PokerStars has offered an online series with more than 100 tournaments in shared liquidity markets.

The Main Event featured Euro 50 low and Euro 250 high buy-in levels to suit all bankrolls and garnered more than 8,000 unique players in total, with the Main Event Low proving most popular, with 5,006 unique players logging in to play.

To add to their winnings, both Main Event winners were awarded a Platinum Pass worth Euro 30,000 to the PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship.

SCOOP follows France and Spain’s first ever shared player pool tournament series earlier this year, the FRESH Series, which exceeded its Euro 5 million guarantee at Euro 6,149,751 and attracted more than 30,000 unique entries across 50 events.

Brian Cullingworth

Infopowa news was a staple of Casinomeister’s news from 2000 until 2019. Brian Cullingworth was the main writer, contributor, and was one of the most knowledgeable persons I have ever known involved in the online casino industry.

We first met in January 2001 at the ICE in London where I observed him going booth to booth interviewing online casino, software, and licensing jurisdiction representatives. Brian was also heavily involved with our forum as “Jetset“, he was involved as an informal consultant to eCOGRA, the OPA, and was a player advocate who assisted countless aggrieved players with his connections to industry folks. He also published “Casino Cautions” via Infopowa news for quite a number of years. These can be found in our news archives.

His passing in February 2019 was a dark day for us. He will be forever missed.

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