Written On 4/27/11 By Recentpoker.com staff writer Emily Apontif :
In what has to be seen as a reaction to the recent Department of Justice actions against major online gambling sites, it appears that Sportsbook.com and PlayersOnly.com are about to restrict US action on their websites.
Marketing affiliates reported this week receiving communications from the company advising:
"Both Sportsbook.com and PlayersOnly.com are going to cease accepting U.S. players and traffic as of May 1st, 2011.
"Existing players with accounts created prior to May 1st, 2011 will still be able to wager, deposit, and withdraw. However no new accounts will be able to be created from U.S. customers.
The new policy is apparently to be applied across all the brands, embracing a wider range of gambling genres than merely poker.
It does not affect wagering from non-US residents.
In related news, US players checking in to their Pokerstars accounts this week were presented with a pop-up notification advising: "We are pleased to announce that the Cash Out option in the PokerStars Cashier is now available," although it was accompanied by a warning that processing and delivery delays may be a problem.
Players who went on to the Cashier point were informed that there was a mandatory cash-out policy in place, requiring US players to clean out their accounts.
These developments indicate that the "temporary use of domain" agreement reached with the DoJ appears to be working for the US players impacted by the recent indictments against major online poker companies.
Meanwhile, other media reports are that Lucky Nugget, eNet and Betraiser have joined the growing list of online gambling companies distancing themselves from the US market.
The position is less clear regarding Absolute Poker and Ultimatebet, which still appear to be accepting US action despite the DoJ's ‘Black Friday' assault, although there are reports that new US registrations are being turned away.
Earlier this week the company advised in a public announcement that it has engaged a top legal firm to review the situation, and that its main priority is "…the refund of balances to US players. However, given the far-reaching consequences of the US Attorney’s actions for Absolute Poker and for the entire poker community, Absolute Poker believes that the responsible course of action is to review with its attorneys the relevant court filings before taking any action.”