888 Poker Bans US Citizens Regardless of Residence

May 21, 2014

After Black Friday, 2011, and post-UIGEA, many of the most prominent and high-staked online poker sites either chose to leave or were forced out of the US Internet poker market. This left hundreds, if not thousands, of online poker pros without an office. They were no longer able to log in to their online poker accounts at PartyPoker, Full Tilt, Absolute Poker, and PokerStars, the biggest and main sites where big-money poker pros made their livings. As a result, many of these players relocated. Some to exotic locations, some north to Canada, and others went south to Mexico. However, relocating just for the sake of playing online poker may not be as easy as it once was, as most elements of this industry ultimately prove to be.

Players have started reporting that one online poker room in particular, 888 Poker, is restricting access to online poker players who are US citizens but have relocated to Mexico or Canada. This news has come via email to these players, which explained that 888 Poker had decided to end their membership with the site and that their online poker accounts at 888 Poker had been closed with a how to guide in obtaining any remaining account balances. Furthermore, these players were also asked not to open any accounts at any 888-affiliated online gambling sites, with a warning that if they did, the accounts would be closed and any balance would not be refunded.

An 888 rep unofficially posted the following comment on the TwoPlusTwo poker forum: “We continuously monitor all 888 Poker accounts and activities and take steps accordingly. In the event you have received this email that you feel is an error, then please contact the support team and you will be answered in due course.”

With any luck, this is an isolated incident and other online poker sites that are readily available to Mexico and Canada players will not follow suit. 888 Poker is still open and running for Canadian and Mexican citizens, who haven’t seemingly been effected or received any similar emails; however, some reports are beginning to surface on the online poker forums that indicate differently.

Typically, when an online poker site makes the call to shut out a particular sector of players, they allow existing players to remain active, while only rejecting new players from the affected region. This is not the case with 888 Poker. Poker players and pros affected by this action will now have to put their chips elsewhere, which is just more annoying than anything, really.


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