PokerStars hands down lifetime ban to high stakes player

banned stamp

banned stampThose who believe in conspiracy theories and assume that major poker companies are favouring high-stakes players at the expense of regulars were proven wrong once again by PokerStars. The poker giant acted against one of those competing at nosebleed tables and handed down a lifetime ban for abusing one of the games mechanics. A Russian player using “Jama-dharma” for a screen name, was found in violation of the rules and abuse of the mechanic known as buttoning.

The player posted his version on 2+2, trying to convince the community that he is the victim and that PokerStars jumped to the wrong conclusion. What is interesting is the fact that the poker player, posting as “feruell” confirmed the fact that the poker company warned him several times before acting against him. Instead of complying with the rules, he went to great lengths to find excuses for his actions and refuses to accept that he was at fault.

Many hands have been handed down in the past, but what makes this case special is that the aforementioned player used to compete at limits ranging from $10/$20 to $1,000/$2,000. The poker community was galvanised by his actions and the vast majority of players condemn him for buttoning his opponents. There have been posts that the accused “feruell of abusing the rules and many of those who had the chance to compete at the same tables, posted evidence to support their claim.

To put things into perspective and determine whether PokerStars’ decision was just or a bit too harsh, it is important to understand what buttoning actually is. Basically a player sits down at several shorthanded tables to receive the button before the first hand is dealt and waits for other players to join him. He plays just a couple of hands and as soon as it is his time to post the big blind, he leaves and focuses his attention on other open tables.

At high limits, these players save a lot of money by not posting the blinds and this gives them an unfair advantage over their opponents. Nowadays, poker tracking software is so popular and pretty much all highrollers use it routinely, it is easy to identify players who abuse the game mechanics. There were plenty of complaints about Jama-dharma and it comes as no surprise that PokerStars took the matter seriously and began an investigation.

The wrongdoer was warned several times about the consequences of his actions, so it is only fair to say that he was not too surprised when PokerStars banned his account. He still has full access and can withdraw his money without any restrictions, but after this operation concludes, the account will be permanently closed.