Back in September, a scandal involving partypoker and its Fast Forward games was brought to light via the popular online forum Reddit. One player accused the operator of cheating players in the fast-fold variant, robbing them of huge sums of money.
Partypoker “Scammed” Players
Justin Liu, who uses the username “nostalgic_goldfish” on Reddit, claimed that certain players, mostly regulars including him, were being given less hands in the cutoff position during the games, placing them at a disadvantage. Liu alleged that partypoker was aware of the discrepancy but chose not to do something about it because the operator benefited from it.
He also said that the poker site acknowledged that it was a bug and promised to have it fixed when he raised the issue back in April, but the problem continued for several months, with the affected players not being offered any compensation. Part 1 of Liu’s expose contained what he said were “evidence” of partypoker’s intentional rigging of the games, and in a follow-up post, he called on people in the poker world with large platforms to bring attention to the issue.
Doug Polk, who likes to discuss and investigate poker controversies, was among the first high-profile figures to lend his hand in a bid to obtain a prompt resolution to the matter. Upon reading Liu’s post, the Upswing Poker founder immediately contacted Rob Yong, a partypoker partner. Polk’s involvement produced some positive results as the bug was reportedly fixed after he reached out to Yong.
Delighted with partypoker’s swift response, Polk praised the poker site, saying they’re putting their best foot forward on the issue. He made the statement in his most recent podcast and Liu isn’t happy about it. He wrote a lengthy message directed to Polk on Reddit, criticizing him for defending partypoker and praising how they dealt with the issue.
According to Liu, partypoker’s handling of the situation was abhorrent and downright criminal. The site was aware of the problem and intentionally allowed it to continue at the expense of the regular players who were refused compensation for their losses. The operator also failed to issue any apology whatsoever and even had the guts to put the blame on players like Liu for choosing to continue playing even when they knew that the games were unfair.
Partypoker’s conduct isn’t deserving of any praise, and that the operator’s negligence and lack of transparency should be criticized, according to Liu. He said Polk should have looked at the situation with objectivity and fairness so he could get to the bottom of the issue rather than hear only one side of the story.
Polk Defends Himself
Liu’s message reached Polk and the semi-retired poker pro just couldn’t understand why he suddenly became the bad person when he was just trying to help out. In a tweet, Polk expressed his disappointment at how things turned out for him and said he only did what he thought was what’s best for the situation – reach out to Yong and partypoker to solve the problem.
Doug Polk maintained that he is for protecting player rights and is not defending partypoker. He also said he’s just happy that the operator quickly responded when he brought the issue to their attention.
As of today, partypoker has yet to issue any statement on the matter, other than releasing a Discord server announcement, informing players that they have optimized the seating logic of their Fast Forward games with the aim to enhance player experience. The site also said they remain fully committed to upholding the integrity of their games.