Thursday, October 13, 2011 : After a few false starts, online poker network is now open to all
 
Some months back the Merge Poker Network, overwhelmed by large numbers of American players looking for a new home in the wake of Black Friday, had to curtail new US sign-ups.  The network said it needed to increase its administrative capabilities before taking on new US action, and that it would be open for business again when that had been achieved.
 
It's taken a little longer than most players anticipated, and there have been what appeared to be a couple of false starts, but on Wednesday night this week the virtual doors were opened to new US sign-ups again, and it is anticipated that Pokerscount's monitoring stats will soon be taking an upward leap in the Merge section.
 
However, not all US players will be welcomed; the network has warned that it will exclude any sign-ups from the states of Washington, New York, Louisiana, Missouri and Maryland.
 
The positive news was marred by reports on the twoplustwo message board that Merge sites were carrying unearned and unauthorised seals from the player protection and standards body eCOGRA.
 
One alert poster took the trouble to check the validity of the seals with eCOGRA chief executive Andrew Beveridge and was told that Merge Gaming Network had not been reviewed for compliance with eCOGRA's tough Certified Software Seal requirements, and therefore should not be displaying the seal either as a network or individual skin achievement.
 
"We will be insisting each of these entities immediately remove any reference of this nature from their websites, and to cease making claims relating to eCOGRA compliance on the forums," Beveridge wrote in an email.

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