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Thread: Who is Pure Poker? Exactly who you think it is.

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    Owner Dan Druff's Avatar
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    Who is Pure Poker? Exactly who you think it is.

    Pure Poker kicked up a storm of controversy when they hijacked Lock Poker's old Revolution network client, and attempted to redirect Lock's traffic to their own site.



    It's not that Lock didn't deserve it. They had cheated both their own players and the Revolution Network out of more than $10 million, and then abruptly left the network after essentially laying waste to it.

    However, the bigger question on everyone's mind was, "Who is Pure Poker? How come I've never heard of them."

    The screen shot above shows Pure Poker claiming to have been "operating with integrity for 14 years", which people found hard to believe. How could no one have heard of them, especially if they were present during the 1999 infancy of online poker?

    Lock Poker claims to have accused Revolution of operating Pure Poker, which they claim Revolution denies.

    However, everyone seems fairly certain that Pure Poker really is Revolution itself, and the mostly-dead skin was utilized to grab Lock's disgruntled customers.

    So does Pure Poker = Revolution Gaming?

    Yes.

    And were they really around in 1999?

    Also yes, but they have NOT been operating continuously.

    Here is the timeline for Pure Poker:

    November, 1999: Pure Poker goes up, probably on its own network. It claims to be "A Division of Dragon Cyber Club", which sounds like something a 12-year-old would invent. Promotes itself as a poker room where you can own a piece. It never appears to catch on. Website is unprofessional and ugly, even by 1999 standards.





    October, 2000: Pure Poker goes down. It does not resurface in any form until 2004.

    July, 2004: The domain purepoker.com is for sale, with a generic message and contact form.






    January, 2005: Pure Poker does not sell. Instead, it becomes an affiliate site.





    October, 2005: Affiliate business didn't work out. Pure Poker is again offline.





    November, 2005: Pure Poker reappears as a skin of Ongame, managed by the ill-fated Futurebet.



    Note the similarity in screen shot to this current Ongame screen shot:



    According to John Mehaffey in his recent article about the situation, when Futurebet went under (through no fault of Pure Poker's), Pure Poker was actually one of the few skins to attempt to pay players out of their own pocket:

    In or around 2005, the Pure Poker brand partnered with Futurebet, which sub-licensed Ongame skins. A long list of companies and players lost everything invested. Pure Poker was mentioned several times during this debacle. It entered into negotiations with players to repay funds that most speculated were stolen by Futurebet, not Pure Poker. A long thread at Casinomeister covers this situation.

    Pure Poker was among a number of sites licensed to operate on the Ongame Network by Futurebet where everyone got stiffed. This included the skin owners, which were not much more than glorified affiliates. This was common back in the day and similar to the Tusk Investment implosion on Microgaming. In both cases, the networks claimed no responsibility for payments.

    Pure Poker made attempts to pay players. Some got paid and full, while others agreed to accept an amount less than their balance to settle the claim. Most players on other skins never received a dime, so the fact that Pure Poker paid anything is important to note as it was likely to be directly out of the company’s pocket.
    http://www.uspoker.com/blog/lock-pok...re-poker/6341/

    Pure Poker seems to have gone dormant after that, though their website with the Ongame screenshots remains through 2009.



    March, 2010: Major website redesign. Pure Poker is clearly now a Cake Network skin. Site looks almost identical to the way it does today.





    October, 2013: Pure Poker, after years of irrelevance, suddenly hijacks Lock Poker's former software and promises a way to claim money stuck on Lock.





    Both the 2010 and 2013 versions of the website state "OPERATED BY BTG GLOBAL N.V." at the bottom.

    And who is BTG Global?

    That's BTG Gaming, operators of the Revolution Network:

    http://www.btggaming.com/poker-network


    And just in case you think perhaps Revolution just OPERATES Pure Poker, but doesn't own it, take a look at the WHOIS records for purepoker.com:

    domain: purepoker.com
    owner: - -
    organization: BTG GLOBAL N.V.
    email: Email Masking Image@btgglobal.com
    address: Brionplein 4
    city: Willemstad,
    postal-code: 111111
    country: AN
    phone: +49.11111111
    admin-c: CCOM-1852264 Email Masking Image@btgglobal.com
    tech-c: CCOM-1753602 Email Masking Image@btgglobal.com
    billing-c: CCOM-1753602 Email Masking Image@btgglobal.com
    nserver: ns1.pokster.eu
    nserver: ns2.pokster.eu
    nserver: ns3.pokster.eu
    status: lock
    created: 2002-07-10 15:36:15 UTC
    modified: 2012-10-04 15:24:07 UTC
    expires: 2020-07-10 15:36:15 UTC
    query-source: 174.36.119.183

    contact-hdl: CCOM-1852264
    person: - -
    organization: BTG GLOBAL N.V., BTG GLOBAL N.V.
    email: Email Masking Image@btgglobal.com
    address: BTG GLOBAL N.V.
    city: Willemstad,
    postal-code: 111111
    country: AN
    phone: +599.946114015999461

    contact-hdl: CCOM-1753602
    person: -- -
    organization: BTG Global N.V.
    email: Email Masking Image@btgglobal.com
    address: Via Cipollini
    city: Sellia Marina
    state: CZ
    postal-code: 88050
    country: IT
    phone: +1.6137150123
    The bolded parts show that BTG owns the domain, and that it was registered in 2002. This matches the copyright date on the current website, which says (C) Pure Poker 2002-2013.

    So how did it exist in 1999?

    I believe they switched registrars in 2002. It's also possible that the original owner from 1999 let it go, and the current owner (BTG) grabbed it in 2002. I would go with the registrar-switching theory, because their original claim was being in business for 14 years, which matches the November 1999 date.


    CLIFFS:

    Pure Poker = Revolution Gaming.

    Pure Poker has not operated for 14 years straight.

    Pure Poker was a highly inconsequential/inactive Cake/Revolution skin until a few days ago.

  2. #2
    Silver circuitp's Avatar
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    Nice work sir. HOF

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    Owner Dan Druff's Avatar
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    I have modified the original post a bit, due to information from this artcile by John Mehaffey, written yesterday:

    http://www.uspoker.com/blog/lock-pok...re-poker/6341/

    Before you give Pure Poker too much credit for paying out of their own pockets in 2005 from the Futurebet debacle (information I just added in the original post, thanks to John), also note this:

    Some players have questioned who is behind Pure Poker. The Pure Poker website lists BTG Global N.V. as the operator. Sportsbook Review offers a searchable database for sites by parent company. The list for BTG sites may be found here. Sportsbook Review gives all BTG Global sites a D+ or worse except one, which is graded a C.
    So BTG Global, which also runs sportsbooks, is not seen as reputable in that industry.

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    Serial Blogger BeerAndPoker's Avatar
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    At this point the only conclusion I can come to and need to know is that anything involving Lock Poker is a slippery slope and for me I'm glad I never put a dime on that site.


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    Poker Investigative Journalist
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    This is a good post, and I linked to it in a story I did today at FlushDraw. There's a little more that can now be stated with some certainty: Pure Poker = Revolution Gaming = BTG Gaming = Zagox Management. It's all the same group, operating out of Curacao and Belize.

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    Gold Deal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by haleylh View Post
    This is a good post, and I linked to it in a story I did today at FlushDraw. There's a little more that can now be stated with some certainty: Pure Poker = Revolution Gaming = BTG Gaming = Zagox Management. It's all the same group, operating out of Curacao and Belize.
    I'm sure you were just being polite by not linking it. I have no horse in any race: http://www.flushdraw.net/news/lock-p...ork-sundering/
    Quote Originally Posted by Jasep View Post
    I have always tried to carry myself with a high level of integrity in the poker community and I take it very personally when someone calls that in to question.

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    Poker Investigative Journalist
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    Quote Originally Posted by Deal View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by haleylh View Post
    This is a good post, and I linked to it in a story I did today at FlushDraw. There's a little more that can now be stated with some certainty: Pure Poker = Revolution Gaming = BTG Gaming = Zagox Management. It's all the same group, operating out of Curacao and Belize.
    I'm sure you were just being polite by not linking it. I have no horse in any race: http://www.flushdraw.net/news/lock-p...ork-sundering/
    Right, I tend not to link to my own stories out of courtesy. Druff probably wouldn't have a problem with a link anyway, but somewhere like Castle Malmuth would. Thanks for the link, but note that Druff and Mehaffey did a lot of the work here.

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    Bronze DutchDoDo's Avatar
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    Man that screenshot of the bald guy with the cigar and granny! Pokerroom.com....good old memories.

    Nice job Sherlock!

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    Owner Dan Druff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by haleylh View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Deal View Post

    I'm sure you were just being polite by not linking it. I have no horse in any race: http://www.flushdraw.net/news/lock-p...ork-sundering/
    Right, I tend not to link to my own stories out of courtesy. Druff probably wouldn't have a problem with a link anyway, but somewhere like Castle Malmuth would. Thanks for the link, but note that Druff and Mehaffey did a lot of the work here.
    You can link anything you want here, as long as it's not a clear case of spamming (which I know you'd never do).

    2+2 is obsessed with preventing any kind of self-promotion unless the person pays, even if the link posted is very relevant to the thread. I don't take that approach here.

  10. #10
    Poker Investigative Journalist
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    Here, Finklestein, here's the latest, including a long statement from Lock's Shane Bridges himself. I'm sure everyone will find it interesting.

  11. #11
    Platinum Rollo Tomasi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DutchDoDo View Post
    Man that screenshot of the bald guy with the cigar and granny! Pokerroom.com....good old memories.

    Nice job Sherlock!
    ditto to DoDo wp Druff



    Quote Originally Posted by tony bagadonuts View Post

    Look Corrigan, you've been a sideshow clown around here from the jump
    It's tough to take you seriously when you've made your bones acting the fool.
    Quote Originally Posted by Brittney Griner's Clit View Post
    Which one is he?

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