US-facing poker site Americas Cardroom has declared a war on bots, instituting a new policy aimed at banning bot accounts and reimbursing affected players.
That announcement came via a post on social media last Friday proclaiming a new reimbursement policy at Winning Poker Network sites such as Americas Cardroom and Black Chip Poker. The first wave of refunds under the new policy has resulted in $175,728.80 doled out to 4,001 players.
More to Come
Those players were all victims of a bot hiding under the screen name of “FoxRox” who logged on from Latvia. The FoxRox account has been banned and WPN reps have stated that many more such bot accounts will be added to the banned list moving forward, with accompanying reimbursements to players.
We are proud to announce the first and only transparent and verifiable reimbursement policy. Taking a stand against bots, we have disabled user FoxRox and refunded 4,001 players for a total of $175,728.80. Check out our new policy here: https://t.co/uLosdMpr7Z pic.twitter.com/x4isVldKQN
— Americas Cardroom (@ACR_POKER) April 12, 2019
The ban on bots, which are artificially intelligent computer programs created to play a type of mistake-free poker, comes as welcome news to players, many who have long complained that WPN has allowed bots to proliferate on ACR and BCP. But as the US-friendly poker network with the largest tournament guarantees and heaviest traffic, many players within the US likely felt that they had no choice but to tolerate and take on the suspected bots operating there.
Those suspicions, which were made public by poker podcaster and YouTuber Joey Ingram more than a year ago, receiving considerable attention in the process, have now been confirmed with the release of WPN’s new reimbursement policy. That policy is one of transparency that will see the user names of banned bots published, along with the reimbursement totals to all affected players.
The 4,001 players on the receiving end of $175,728.80 in reimbursements have all been listed at ACR. The largest refund totaled $1,876.92 and the smallest just nine cents ($0.09).
The formula for calculating player reimbursements in tournament action will see players ladder up a pay slot after the bot’s removal from the payout field. Players who are victimized by bots in ring game action will also be recompensed accordingly,
to a cap of $25,000 per offending player, per WPN’s statement announcing the reimbursement policy.
That statement promises that the poker network will
do our best to calculate reimbursements correctly. In the same sentence, WPN suggests that players who feel that they haven’t received an adequate refund under the banned bot reimbursement policy should
check their records and notify the poker room of any possible discrepancy.
Party Poker First
It’s worth pointing out that although WPN is heralding itself as being
the first and only online poker room offering a transparent, verifiable reimbursement policy, that isn’t entirely true. Just a few days ago, Party Poker announced that it had banned 277 bot accounts and redistributed $734,852.15 to players affected by the unscrupulous activity during a 4-month period.
Party Poker never used the word
policy in describing their actions, but did state that a new fraud team is diligently working to identify and ban bot accounts and that more such refunds and banishment would be forthcoming. Let’s hope that other poker sites do the same, cleaning up the industry of the dreaded bots in order to ensure a fair and safe poker-playing environment.