Bodog thwarts data-mining with Anonymous Tables

Posted by Steve Ruddock on Nov 30, 2011 Posted in Poker Industry News, Poker Room News | No Comments »

With the announcement of a new software update that includes making every player on the site anonymous, Bodog has become the first online poker site to take a serious step in deterring data-mining and putting all online poker players on an equal playing field.

Bodog has long been an advocate of doing away with data-mining (where professional players can collect data on their opponents and then use the information to formulate strategies against them) especially from sites that sell this information to professional players. By issuing players random ID’s every time they sit down, data-mining sites will no longer be able to amass massive databases on particular players, and players will have to formulate their strategies based on only what they have seen the player in a particular session.

As Bodog founder Calvin Ayre stated on Facebook, “this is going to create a lot of controversy…but the proof is in the pudding…if bodog is better off after this, the industry will be forced to follow.”

The Vice President of the Bodog Network, Jonas Odman, had this to say on the new Anonymous tables:

“We believe that introducing these features makes the Bodog Recreational Poker Model a pioneer in the online poker world and offers all players of all abilities the fairest place to play. We have shown before that we are not afraid of controversy by changing the way rakeback was viewed and starting to block data mining sites earlier this year and these new features now give players a less biased ‘pure poker’ experience. To my mind the software and Bodog’s Recreational Poker Model is a genuine game changer.”

In addition to the Anonymous Tables feature the software upgrade also included the following changes:

* The addition of a “Rabbit Cam” to see what the next card would have been

* The lowering of the Maximum rake at Heads-Up tables from $1 down to $.50

* Improved accessibility and speed

* In-Client Blackjack games

* An increase to 20 in maximum tables

* The addition of Shoot-outs, Heads-Up, Omaha, and Knock-Out tournaments

It will be interesting to see how the poker world as a whole reacts to this change. While many top players likely feel that data-collection and their ability to process this information is an instrumental component to their success, I’m sure there are many other players who would rather not spend countless hours poring over this data to stay competitive at the online poker tables. In the end it will probably come down to a battle between two camps: Players who list data-processing among their strengths, and players who feel this is either a weakness or look upon it as a chore.

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