Saturday, August 21, 2010

PokerStars Responds

I probably should've put more thought into writing a blog post about the Negreanu controversy.  I've been told to lighten up...that my involvement is unbecoming and beneath me, which I think - but am not sure - is a polite way of saying "shut up because I don't care to hear about this anymore."

I stand by my statement - just as I don't think it's ok for anyone to call another person a "n*****," I don't think it's ok for anyone to call a woman a "c***"  (and I find it wrong and demeaning to women that a radio personality, politician, public figure, or anyone really, can lose their job or be publicly excoriated for the use of a racial epithet but someone can use an equally reprehensible word toward a woman with no consequences).

Then again - I. Am. A. Woman.  As a woman, I think it's wrong.

Do my feelings on the subject make me an emotionally unstable, overly sensitive individual? Does the fact that I chose to vocalize those feelings make me a strident, harpy bitch?

(for some idea how some people might answer those questions, see comments to this blog)

Whatever you may believe, it's my heartfelt belief that my feeling/opinion and my expression of that feeling/opinion merely makes me an individual with a personal standard.  Period.

My all-time favorite poker players are Kathy LiebertMaria Mayrinck, Kara Scott, Vanessa Selbst, Victoria Coren and Jena Delk so it's not like I'm trying to promote a Team Danny/Team Annie agenda, although I do wonder if there would be any money in t-shirts with such slogans...hmm...I digress.

No, I am not going to go play at Ultimate Bet.  As much as I am a fan of Joe Sebock, I don't believe they ever adequately addressed the cheating scandal and so I may just end up going back to Bodog or FullTilt...we'll see.

So, go on witcha bad selves and have some fun today. It's Saturday.  Be nice to each other and to all you men, please be especially kind to your wives, mothers, daughters and sisters.  For as much as we get on your nerves, you love us even if you can't admit it (here's a secret - we love you, too).

PokerStars' response to my email is below.  Again, if you feel as I do and/or want to express your opinion to PokerStars - and I hope you will - please just email them at

Pokerstars' response to my initial email:

From: PokerStars Support
Subject: PokerStars Support - Daniel
Sent: Aug 21, 2010 12:49 AM
Hello ________,

Thank you for your email.

We are glad to hear that you are enjoying the Women's Poker League and value
very much as one of our loyal female poker players.

Daniel and Annie are both passionate about poker, and both aren't afraid to
speak their mind. I think this is a fact people like and appreciate about
both players. When you have two people that are similar in that regard,
there's bound to be friction somewhere along the line.

Although Daniel Negreanu is a Team PokerStarsPro, he is an entity to himself
and as such will always be encouraged to express his views and speak his
mind as he would otherwise do so, PokerStars Pro or not.

I hope you will still enjoy watching both Daniel and Annie play as both are
fantastic poker players and an enrichment, on one way or another, for the
poker world.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any further questions and
thank you for choosing PokerStars.


PokerStars Support Team
And my response:

I get that and appreciate that he is an individual unto himself. But his comment re: Annie Duke, a woman, and calling her a "cunt" is exactly on par with calling an African American person a "n*****," it is completely and utterly unacceptable.

I appreciate your response and would likely be placated if PokerStars were to make public a statement like you provided me.

If that's not going to happen, please let me know because I will cash out and commence playing elsewhere.

Look forward to hearing from you.
And PokerStars' response:

From: PokerStars Support
Date: Saturday, August 21 2010 1:13 AM
Subject: PokerStars Support - Forwarded to Supervisor

Hello __________,

Thank you for your reply.

I have forwarded your email to a Support Supervisor for their review and
response. You will receive a reply as soon as possible.

Your patience is appreciated.


PokerStars Support Team
 That was 12 hours ago.  

Good luck at the tables, peeps.


  1. Bravo! A typical response from a company making billions of dollars of which a large portion comes from illegal operating practices... Mr Dneg's pic and "autograph" is at all of the promo's I recieve from Stars. It's everyones worst nightmare to be "found out" and show the deepest dirty self to the world. Mr. Dnegs has done that repeatedly over the last several months. With absolutly no backlash! Scotty baby was completly shuned by players, media, and fans for his behavior while WInning a major event. He admits he was wrong and has gone to great lengths to re-create himself. I have been wondering since the WSOP why this issue has been swept under the rug. I highly doubt Mr Dnegs or Stars will even address this situation. Both seem to think they have cornered the market. A serious case of entitlement at work here. Enough out of me... We're listening Mr Dnegs and Stars.... Sergio

  2. You must be on some good drugs if you think the word cunt is even close to the N word. Explain that to a black woman, and I guarantee you will get slapped.

    What a joke. you should be ashamed of yourself.

  3. Like the person above, I'm baffled by your stance.
    "c***" is not a derogatory word for a woman- hence why it is used just as much towards men as it is towards women (more so-certainly in my experience).
    "N*****" IS a derogatory term for a black man or woman. I find your comparison of the two actually borderline offensive.

    You are obviously intelligent, and I also agree that Pokerstars trivial treatment of DN's actions is controversial. This is why it's annoying to find you severely damaging your own argument by approaching it from this ludicrous standpoint.

  4. To anonymous x2...I have a couple of thoughts...oh, ok...cunt is not a derogatory word for a're right. He was trying to give her a compliment. My bad.

    As for the previous "you must be on good drugs....should be ashamed of yourself," nope, sorry, I'm neither on good drugs nor am I ashamed. As I said in the post - it is my personal standard and opinion that to degrade anyone, male or female, with a word like "n" or "c" is beneath the person using the word. You obviously disagree. More power to you. I stand by my statement. Thinking about putting a poll to see what others, particularly females, might say.

  5. hilarious .. so while you're emailing poker stars demanding whatever because of a comment one of their pros directed at someone else, ever stop to consider the possible repercussions to yourself?
    like say daniel negreanu decided to take your comments and actions personally and contacted your state bar? you've admited in a public forum that you're violating UIGEA .. isn't that grounds for for disbarment?

  6. Hi Pokerlawyer,

    Although I feel c.. isn't as derogatory as the n.. I think it is still insulting and inappropriate, there is something in between calling someone n... and complimenting. However, the difference is just a matter of feeling. I expect pokerstars and/or Negreanu will admit that the comment was out of line, but we'll see about that. Further, I think you are free to write down your feelings about this or anything else, people who do't like it or already heard enough about it just shouldn't read your blog.
    Finally, short question, what do you think of the positions Negreanu and Duke took regarding the ladies event?


  7. Hey Nils, I appreciate your comments. I'm sure learning more than I ever imagined about the c word and I can see what you mean. People far smarter and subtler than me would probably have said things much better than I did w/o looking like an overly sensitive harpy.

    As for Daniel N and Annie D's position regarding the ladies' event this past summer, I think debate, without personal attack because it's lame and the province of the weak and already defeated, is great.

    I wrote something about it a while back and you can read it here: See what you think?.

  8. "I have a couple of thoughts...oh, ok...cunt is not a derogatory word for a're right. He was trying to give her a compliment. My bad. "

    There is middle ground between between a word chosen specifically to offend someone because of their background and one simply used to offend. Hence why there is a difference between calling a black man a 'nigger' and calling him a 'twat' etc. Both offensive words, but one aimed specifically at his background.

    Your response just skirted around the counterpoint, choosing instead to argue against a completely fabricated argument that 'cunt' was supposed to be a compliment or, assuming this was for comic effect, that it was not at all offensive.
    Surprised by a petulant & lazy response I would expect from someone of less intelligence then yourself.
    All the best with your blog.

  9. Hey Pokerlawyer,

    I just read your Blog about Women in Poker and especially enjoyed reading the introduction where you mention the court cases, perhaps because of my own juridical background. From a juridical point of view, I think it is pretty obvious that men can not be excluded from a ladies event, unless perhaps when they would make some kind of invitational event of it.

    Besides the above I agree with your point that by precluding a large part of the poker population from a tourney, the honour of winning it is much less then when you win a tournament where everyone is allowed to play.

    On the other hand, the tourney is held during the WSOP and everyone that likes to serious compete against the best players can enter at least one regular event every day during that period. From what I read, it seems that a lot of ladies who are playing the ladies event are recreational amateur players; they basically want to have a bit of fun and do not especially desire to be the best player in a highly competitive environment. For instance, I read somewhere that during the ladies event a complete table took a break together (not scheduled) to go to the ladies room together. Things like that are highly unlikely to happen during a regular WSOP event. Also, I believe the ladies tourney is not an official WSOP event and no bracelet can be won.

    All in all I think the ladies event is not really necessary (but what event is), but there seems to be a demand for it and to stop organizing it because of equality seems a little bit far fetched. I don’t have a problem with an event where mostly recreational amateur ladies wish to play without being confronted by a few bum hunters, drag queens and men using a tampon for a card protector.

    Best regards,

  10. Dear Anonymous who took issue with my response last night, describing it as petulant and lazy. I *am* petulant and lazy, I'm sorry. Also, I don't think I'm that intelligent. I'm sure you agree.

    I'm not sure what you want me to say in response to your comment. I appreciate the fact that you commented. I disagree with your comment's content.

    You state in your first comment that the "c" word is not derogatory toward women. I disagree. I then made a petulant and lazy response "my bad - he meant to compliment her" when it's obvious to anyone breathing that Daniel certainly did not mean to compliment Annie Duke.

    What else can I say? I disagree that it's not derogatory towards women. I believe the very offensiveness of the word is likely a prime reason why Negreanu would use it in reference to Duke.

    I am a woman, I find it derogatory. I don't/can't speak for all women.

    I find the "n" word equally reprehensible. I am not a person of color.

    I find the "c" word and the "n" word comparably ugly. That is my personal opinion. I am not saying I am right and everyone else is wrong, it's just my personal opinion.

    I have not conducted extensive research of the "c" word or the "n" word to understand more fully why I, personally, find them equally ugly and offensive.

    I don't know how my personal opinion of the two words is damaging my argument about Negreanu's use of the "c" word in reference to Duke. Maybe you will help me see that better.

    I can say that my mother is about to kill me because I've said the "c" word more this weekend than I ever have in my whole life. Maybe it will desensitize me.

    What else can I say to make you feel better, sir? Or ma'am?

  11. Sir. Fair enough. Please understand that I DO believe that 'cunt' is derogatory towards women, just not any more than it is to men. Fair enough if you disagree. In answer to your what you can say to make me feel better you pretty much just said it. Good luck with your mother.

  12. P/L as a male I seldom hear the c word used and when it is used in any context it is derogatory, especially if "stinkin'" is added.
    As to the n word, when used black on black it seems to be ok unless preceded by "dirty", "shiftless", "no count", or other negative adjectives. The n word uttered by a white to a black is always considered derogatory, with justification.
    I don't understand how anyone can argue otherwise and I agree with your position.

  13. Hi Nils, really good comments. I think we very much agree on the points regarding the Ladies WSOP event. I'd much rather win a bracelet for an open event. I think the Ladies WSOP event does give a bracelet, but as you pointed out - it's not on par with the open events so for all intents and purposes, doesn't "count" in the minds of many. That said, I'm kidding myself to even be contemplating either w/o really improving my game. Appreciate you taking the time to comment.


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