April 2011 will go down in history as one of the darkest months for online poker in the United States, when the Department of Justice swooped down on some of the major sites and shut them down literally overnight. Sites such as Full Tilt Poker, UB.com and Poker Stars were flung from the top of the ladder and had to start dealing with the problem of paying out millions of dollars to their players. Poker Stars was able to start paying out almost immediately, and nobody can find fault with the way this site has honored all money due to its players. UB.com seems to be a lost cause and hasn’t even bothered making a statement regarding the money owed, while Full Tilt Poker is the site in the news most often these days, trying desperately to find investors so that players can be paid back the almost $1.5 million owed to them.
Nobody can argue that Black Friday threw the online poker world upside down, but, as my grandpa used to say “use the juice for lemonade and throw out the pips”. In other words, while Black Friday has been truly back for many players, there are some who have managed to find the good in this event. Take, for example, the fact that with so many players migrating from the top sites, other online poker rooms are offering some of the best offers seen in the industry in a very long time! From some of the best online bonuses, to excellent promotions that competitors simply cannot beat, players are absolutely spoiled for choice. Some sites, such as Party Poker decided to run a promotion where all entry fees into tournaments were abolished. Other sites have literally doubled their welcome bonuses so that players get more for their initial deposits. Some sites are even honoring the VIP status enjoyed by players at their former sites, and are matching those statuses at their own sites, with all the perks and unique bonuses that come with the territory. So while Black Friday was a black mark in online poker history, it has definitely triggered some excellent promos out there.