PokerScout.com, an online poker site that monitors player traffic, stated that the number of online poker players has plummeted by 22 percent all over the world after Black Friday. The indictments on founder-operators of Full Tilt Poker, PokerStars, and Absolute Poker by the US federal government have led to many US online poker players quitting the game for good. The site released its report after comparing the poker traffic of April 9 – 10 and the poker traffic of Black Friday to Easter Sunday.
Statistics reveals that the number of real money poker players has declined by 22 percent following the federal government crackdown on prominent offshore providers of online poker on April 15. PokerStars, the online poker industry’s largest online poker room, experienced a fall of 28 percent in real money poker players. PokerStars’ real money player traffic fell by 25 percent, but the site regained 22 percent of it by Easter Sunday.
Full Tilt Poker was hit harder than PokerStars following the federal government crackdown. On April 16 – 17, the percentage of real money poker players at Full Tilt fell by 49 percent, but Full Tilt managed to recover considerably by Easter Sunday. According to PokerScout.com, Full Tilt is still down by 35 percent.
The events of Black Friday hit the Cereus Network hardest. Although UB.com and Absolute Poker continued to provide their services to the US market even after the indictment, the Cereus Network traffic plummeted by 40 percent immediately after Black Friday and by 42 percent on Easter Sunday. PokerScout.com statistics shows that Cereus Network has suffered a total of 65 percent traffic loss because of Black Friday.
While it is true that many players have simply moved to other sites still accepting US players, their number does not equal the number lost by Full Tilt, PokerStars, and Absolute Poker. Real money poker players at the Merge Gaming Network has shot up by 61 percent over the past two weeks, while traffic at Bodog Poker and Cake Poker has shot up by 32 percent and 30 percent, respectively. The Everleaf Network has witnessed traffic rise of 1 percent.
The actual figures clearly show that several US poker players might have stopped playing for good. PokerScout.com says that Full Tilt, Absolute, and PokerStars lost 15,831 real money poker players during the past two weeks, but the poker sites still accepting US players have had only 950 of those players registering for their services.