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Old 12-23-2015, 05:29 PM   #1
Tannhauser
 
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Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Dear Friends,

We, the protesting community www.wearepokerplayers.com, players of the social network Tiltbook and high-stakes players, are announcing a new strike against Amaya's actions and ask you to join us in a boycott on 1-7 of January 2016.

We refuse to play on PokerStars for those seven days and are cashing out at least 10% of our bankrolls on the fist day of the boycott.

We ask you to post in this thread if you wish to join the step 1 of our protest; write your PokerStars nickname and the games you play.


My name is Ivan. I am writing a blog here about backing, but I am better-known within the Russian poker community (more information in my profile). I also represent the Russian community in the protest against Amaya's actions.

I've spent a few weeks recently in negotiations with opinion leaders like Ansky, skjervoy, Masuro, meleab, Охота and other top players. We have been discussing tactics and the goals of the protest and have agreed to the following plan:

a) Common goals and coordinated actions by all protest groups (Wearepokerplayers, Tiltbook, twoplustwo, other leaders, local communities)
b) We’ll grow our protest over time (we start small and eventually include as many players as we can).
c) As the numbers of our supporters grow, we’ll move our goal from attracting interest and attention to making a real financial hit to Amaya in order to make them negotiate.

To stop our boycott these are our demands and suggestions

We demand
- rewards for all games and stakes offered
- a rewards review in games that have a low percentage of winners
- promised SN and SNE rewards for 2016
- regularly scheduled meetings with players from the community

We suggest
- table starter rewards and happy hours
- lowering microstakes rake


Our plan

Step 1.
We’re staging a strike on Jan. 1–7: one week of no games at all. We are also asking all of the participants to withdraw no less than 10% of their bankrolls from PokerStars. 1,300 players have already signed up for this boycott at http://tiltbook.com/en/weareallin/. The most important goal now is to attract attention from local comminities.

Step 2.
We’re staging a strike probably on Feb 2-11, also for a week or 10 days. The most likely dates are Feb 2-11. At this stage, our goal is to reach 4,000–5,000 participants. In fact, this strike repeats the previous one. We are also hoping for your support. At this stage, we’ll begin to advertize step 3 extremely actively and convince people to take part in our next strike.

Step 3.
I must underline that our protest group isn’t in complete agreement about this item, and it is still up for discussion. We (wearepokerplayers.com) are making a longer protest with the possibility of its prolongation by united voting of the protesters as soon as we reach 5,000 signees in our list. Our participants will decrease Amaya’s rake by 20% (according to the MacroPoker statistical service), which will reduce their EBITDA to around half of its previous level. This will make Amaya sit down at the negotiating table. We want to see the results of the January strike first so that we can discuss the details of this very protest. Currently this step is a wearepokerplayers proposal and in order to be well executed will need support from other poker communities, which is in the works. I must underline that our protest group isn’t in complete agreement about this item, and it is still up for discussion.

We also haven’t reached a united point of view on managing the protests. Most likely, we will form a board for the protest, members of which will be chosen by the local communities. We are planning to do this between the 1st and the 2nd protests. The tools for voting will be available at http://wearepokerplayers.com.

Our goals

Our main goal is to attract as many players as possible especially in the local communities (Latin America, Brazil, Poland, Hungary, Germany and Austria, etc.)

We need poker and sports journalists, opinion shapers and bloggers who can help us by translating the key texts and other communications for their local communities. Don’t underestimate yourself — if you have at least 50 contacts of players in Skype, you can significantly help our cause. PM me or write to protest@wearepokerplayers.com.

So, we’ll stop playing on Amaya Group’s poker sites from Jan. 1 to 7, 2016 and withdraw 10% of our bankrolls. Register in this thread; write your PokerStars nickname and the games you play.

Last edited by Mike Haven; 12-23-2015 at 07:11 PM.
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Old 12-23-2015, 05:33 PM   #2
DoubleD
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Oxota here, I play high stakes cash, MTTs, SNGs and I'm an elite coach over at RIO. Joining this protest.
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Old 12-23-2015, 05:58 PM   #3
TedHawkins
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

In. Micro PLO as Ted_Hawkins2.
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Old 12-23-2015, 06:01 PM   #4
old coot 43
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

I do not play on stars because of location but I 100% supports the strike.
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Old 12-23-2015, 06:34 PM   #5
expat
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

QUOTE
We demand that every game-related change be approved by an online players council. Members of the council will be elected on our site and will represent different stakes and communities.

Recent changes regarding the VIP system have to be cancelled as they weren’t approved by the players.

UNQUOTE

So!!
You've dropped the demand for board members but still expect Amaya to give you operational control of their poker business?.

You guys are deluded.
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Old 12-23-2015, 06:36 PM   #6
iamblackornot
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

considering your demands, this protest is senseless. they are destroying competetive poker and you just beggin for highstakes vpps and 1-year delay for sn+. in 2017 they will cap rb to 25% and u will strike again for vpps on highstakes.
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Old 12-23-2015, 06:44 PM   #7
l_gravas
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Players must have some control over poker activities, otherwise we're doomed.
And now we have the power to obtain this control while amaya has it's insane debts and cannot lose any profits. Demanding this now is huge +EV for a poker community, i really can't see how is it deluded.
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Old 12-23-2015, 07:50 PM   #8
blopp
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

In, Skjervøy, PLO.

expat: this thread is the framework. Wearepokerplayers is the russian part of the boycott (also from December), their website need an update.

iamblackornot: there is also demands for player meetings and a review of games that are likely affected hardest by these changes.
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Old 12-23-2015, 08:39 PM   #9
GobletTamer
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Iplay4lulz, high stakes NL CAP games.

I will also try to get the protest T-shirts to PCA (like the ones in Prague).
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Old 12-23-2015, 09:08 PM   #10
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by l_gravas View Post
Players must have some control over poker activities, otherwise we're doomed. And now we have the power to obtain this control while amaya has it's insane debts and cannot lose any profits. Demanding this now is huge +EV for a poker community
Unfortunately, one of the key components of delusional thinking is

Quote:
Originally Posted by l_gravas View Post
i really can't see how is it deluded.

Guess we will see how it plays out in the end. I will be mildly curious to see some more of your creative math on the strike's impact, and I am a bit disappointed the surprising first effort (in terms of support, not financial impact) was not used as a proper foundation to try to get better communication going with Amaya, as I do think it may have had that possibility.
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Old 12-24-2015, 04:05 AM   #11
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

lol, last strike didn't go well? Try "striking" from now until forever, it's the only language they understand
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Old 12-24-2015, 06:31 AM   #12
Dr.FatCat
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

OP please post this in NVG if you want higher numbers. Last time you got like 1500 people to signup in 3 days after the thread was in NVG, vs 1000 in Internet Poker after 2 weeks.

I'm in : K****n
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Old 12-24-2015, 06:38 AM   #13
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by sixfour View Post
lol, last strike didn't go well? Try "striking" from now until forever, it's the only language they understand
+1 on that. How often do you see workers unions saying "we strike these five days"... Stop playing altogether, and for ****s sake start playing at another site(s).
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Old 12-24-2015, 06:41 AM   #14
CyberShark93
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Yep, i don't expect Amaya to do anything for the players at this point, I'm leaving stars for ever

They made it clear they don't want us
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Old 12-24-2015, 06:58 AM   #15
orb_dam_u
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Isn't you guys cashing out and going on a strike exacty what they want to achieve?(Although they really wish you to stop playing forever and not for 5 days.)Imo you all should be playing 125% of your normal volume to really get to them. Anyway gl and have fun.
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Old 12-24-2015, 07:29 AM   #16
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by sixfour View Post
lol, last strike didn't go well? Try "striking" from now until forever, it's the only language they understand
That strike is scheduled for when online poker finally dies.
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Old 12-24-2015, 08:00 AM   #17
l_gravas
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by orb_dam_u View Post
Isn't you guys cashing out and going on a strike exacty what they want to achieve?(Although they really wish you to stop playing forever and not for 5 days.)Imo you all should be playing 125% of your normal volume to really get to them. Anyway gl and have fun.
Actually, 125% volume is exactly what Amaya wants. They have fixed expenses and every $ of rake over it makes their profit. Moreover, in their economic state(huge debt, bad debt/ebitda ratio, plummeting stock) they want to squeeze every buck possible, that is exactly why
a) "broken promise thing" happened. My personal guess would be that originally they wanted to discontinue SNE and keep bonuses for 2016, but they couldn't because their profits are below expected so they decided to rob 450 SNEs(and 6000-8000 supernovas). That is just a speculation though, maybe they wanted to rob players regardless of profits.
b) players have the upper hand but when and only when we organise, we go on strike and we demand big.
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Old 12-24-2015, 08:04 AM   #18
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by l_gravas View Post
Actually, 125% volume is exactly what Amaya wants. They have fixed expenses and every $ of rake over it makes their profit. Moreover, in their economic state(huge debt, bad debt/ebitda ratio, plummeting stock) they want to squeeze every buck possible, that is exactly why
a) "broken promise thing" happened. My personal guess would be that originally they wanted to discontinue SNE and keep bonuses for 2016, but they couldn't because their profits are below expected so they decided to rob 450 SNEs(and 6000-8000 supernovas). That is just a speculation though, maybe they wanted to rob players regardless of profits.
b) players have the upper hand but when and only when we organise, we go on strike and we demand big.
Sounds good, I'm in. gl
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Old 12-24-2015, 08:10 AM   #19
The Imp
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

The problem is that Pokerstars don't care about "rake", at least not in the way players seem to think. A poker site used to provide a service (poker) and take a fee for that service (rake). Nowadays that isn't their focus.

The only money coming in is from deposits. They want to keep as much of that money as possible. When Amaya took over the CEO said that they wanted Pokerstars for their customer base, not for poker. That's what they're banking on. Shift away from providing a service and taking a fee - move to providing a service in exchange for the whole deposit (the casino model).

It really sucks but it doesn't seem like a situation that has a big instant solution. I believe Stars are wrong and really hope they don't kill the game in the process - but in the short term threads like these aren't going to have the intended effect because removing as many withdrawing players from the site is exactly their intention.

The best short-term action would be to give your business to another site. Make sure everyone you know who's even slightly interested in poker is aware of the direction Stars is going. Posting lists of demands isn't going to help, at least in the short term. They want winning players gone, winning players are threatening to leave - that's not a strong negotiating position.
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Old 12-24-2015, 08:21 AM   #20
l_gravas
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Imp View Post
The problem is that Pokerstars don't care about "rake", at least not in the way players seem to think. A poker site used to provide a service (poker) and take a fee for that service (rake). Nowadays that isn't their focus.

The only money coming in is from deposits. They want to keep as much of that money as possible. When Amaya took over the CEO said that they wanted Pokerstars for their customer base, not for poker. That's what they're banking on. Shift away from providing a service and taking a fee - move to providing a service in exchange for the whole deposit (the casino model).

It really sucks but it doesn't seem like a situation that has a big instant solution. I believe Stars are wrong and really hope they don't kill the game in the process - but in the short term threads like these aren't going to have the intended effect because removing as many withdrawing players from the site is exactly their intention.

The best short-term action would be to give your business to another site. Make sure everyone you know who's even slightly interested in poker is aware of the direction Stars is going. Posting lists of demands isn't going to help, at least in the short term. They want winning players gone, winning players are threatening to leave - that's not a strong negotiating position.
You would be right if Amaya didn't have this debt. In this case, yeah, right strategy for them long-term would be to eradicate winning players, make unbeatable rake in most disciplines etc.
But now they need money and fast. No way recreational players only pool will make that much rake as regs do. Currently SNEs(all regs) and supernovas(vast majority are regs) generate around 30% of pure rake(rake - rakeback) basically that's almost all of the money PS profiting.
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Old 12-24-2015, 08:52 AM   #21
l_gravas
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

And, one more thing. If every winning player suddenly gone, that doesn't mean that Amaya will turn every deposit into their money. Some of the players left will become a winner, and they turn into a regulars, they will start cashing out. Well, unless Amaya rockets rake to unbeatable level which will happen eventually, if we don't resist.
That's why i ask every concerned player to join out site. This protest demands are the cure for the symptoms, and what we demand(to create players council which will approve game-related changes) is a cure for the disease. I know it sounds like something "too much" but actually it's a must. Without it Amaya will turn our game into casino in no-time because it's a obvious right business-decision for them. All of the above is my personal opinion though not the position of the whole protest.

Nevertheless many reputable posters share your position and we realize that actions have sense only in case we all agree. So we will keep discussing it and do not refuse to modify it according to what the community consensus will be. But the most important thing now and for today is striking 1-7 January. This point is obvious and has no objections. So even if you disagree - please sign into the first strike and let's keep discussing this issue.
Just in case you're not going to sign into our website - sign here or at Tiltbook - we go untied
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Old 12-24-2015, 08:54 AM   #22
The Imp
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by l_gravas View Post
You would be right if Amaya didn't have this debt. In this case, yeah, right strategy for them long-term would be to eradicate winning players, make unbeatable rake in most disciplines etc.
But now they need money and fast. No way recreational players only pool will make that much rake as regs do. Currently SNEs(all regs) and supernovas(vast majority are regs) generate around 30% of pure rake(rake - rakeback) basically that's almost all of the money PS profiting.
I agree that they're wrong but a strike is pointless. The conversation so far:

Amaya - "Winning players are no longer wanted at our sites"

Regs - "If you don't change your mind we're out of here!"

Amaya - "Um... OK?"

Regs - "We'll do it! Also, give us some control over your operations."

Amaya - "....."


See the problem? They believe that by eliminating withdrawing players they'll still find a way to convert recreational players deposits into your all-important rake. Whether through pushing spins, casino games, whatever. They believe they've reached a point where they're too big for liquidity to be a problem.

Maybe in 6 months time it'll be apparent whether players have any leverage, right now it's too soon to tell. A movement like this might ultimately be successful but not while your first move and Amayas are the same (removing some regs from the games).

Edit - I'll be moving most of my play to other sites from January, I honestly believe that's the best way to help. Let them see the error of their ways and they'll be the ones reaching out to get players back. Simply "striking" for a few days each month might make your point but it's not going to change their mind if you play the other 25 days/month.
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Old 12-24-2015, 09:02 AM   #23
l_gravas
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Imp View Post
Edit - I'll be moving most of my play to other sites from January, I honestly believe that's the best way to help. Let them see the error of their ways and they'll be the ones reaching out to get players back. Simply "striking" for a few days each month might make your point but it's not going to change their mind if you play the other 25 days/month.
I totally agree to that. In russian community we managed to sign up more than 400 players to endless strike from January 1st, but out western colleagues think that it's impossible to do that in western community so we had to settle for the current option.
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Old 12-24-2015, 09:17 AM   #24
Mateo94
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by l_gravas View Post
I totally agree to that. In russian community we managed to sign up more than 400 players to endless strike from January 1st, but out western colleagues think that it's impossible to do that in western community so we had to settle for the current option.

The strike should have in the terms that we move to another site that way we can push that site to compete with Amaya.
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Old 12-24-2015, 09:20 AM   #25
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Re: Joint strike against PokerStars&Amaya on the 1st–7th of January (REGISTRATION)

Quote:
Originally Posted by l_gravas View Post
Players must have some control over poker activities, otherwise we're doomed.
And now we have the power to obtain this control while amaya has it's insane debts and cannot lose any profits. Demanding this now is huge +EV for a poker community, i really can't see how is it deluded.
What's deluded is the expectation that a corporation will pay $4.5bn for a business only to pass control of a major part of that business to a pressure group composed of disgruntled customers.

You are asking for the power to set the rake percentage AND the rewards percentage.
These two things directly affect the revenue of the company, so no director or shareholder can/will give in to this.
You are expecting this "Amaya won’t have any other choice but to surrender and negotiate with the players"
They won't/can't negotiate because you are asking for unconditional surrender, so there is no room for negotiation

The hard truth is that there is nothing special about poker.
It's merely one part of a global entertainment industry. key word = entertainment

Pokerstars derives its revenue from rake. Rake is generated by churning player deposits (like a stocks & shares boileroom)
The business model is >> deposit pool > churn > rake > revenue

I've seen many posts on here that compare a skilled player to operating a casino.
Play a mathematical game, make the right decisions and the money will flow your way.

So consider this.
If you only deposit to take advantage of promotions and regularly make withdrawals, then you are taking money out of the poker economy by reducing the size of the deposit pool. Reducing the size of the deposit pool reduces the churn rate and the rake/revenue of Pokerstars.

From that POV, you are no longer a customer but a competitor. Moreover, you are a competitor who is demanding to be rewarded by Pokerstars for competing with them. It's no wonder someone in their management team wants to cut you off at the knees.


I suggest that if you're really mad at Pokerstars then you withdraw all your money and play elsewhere.

If it turns out that you are right in your assertions that Pokerstars needs you more than you need them, then one of two things will happen
1. Pokerstars will go bust and you can dance on their grave.
2. Pokerstars will hunt you down with offers and rewards to lure you back.

If you are wrong and they don't need you - then you better start focussing on your win rate
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