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Black Friday One year Later

Campos and Eli are looking at spending some time in prison.

Negative Impact

When the Department of Justice seized the biggest domains in the online poker business (Full Tilt, PokerStars and Absolute Poker), the effects were immediate and profound.

Of course the poker companies themselves lost, for all practical purposes, access to the entire American poker market. That market, by the way, was bringing in over $2 billion annually. But it wasn’t just the poker sites who felt the impact of Black Friday.

Since poker hit the mainstream a decade or so ago, plenty of Americans left behind the the 9 to 5 world for a career in online poker. No one knows for certain how many people made their living this way, but those who did joined the swelling ranks of the unemployed.

A small number of these full time players moved to Canada or other countries with legal online gaming, but most were just out of luck. Not only that, but many of them lost out on tens of thousands of dollars in player accounts that had vanished into thin air.

Last year the Village Voice wrote up a must read feature titled “Online Poker Kings Get Cashed Out” that focused on Black Friday’s impact on players.

Of course, any of the Black Friday defendants like John Campos, Raymond Bitar and Chad Elie who are facing substantial prison sentences would happily trade place with the put out players.

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