GreySnowPoker.com goes live with a unique pricing model
A native American tribe known as the Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma launched an online poker site called GreySnowPoker.com which uses real money. This makes it the first native American site to operate under Isle of Man Gambling Supervisory Commission and also the first tribe site to offer their services internationally.
The site went online on 5th November with a fresh pricing model dubbed the ‘FairPlay’ model. Here’s the GSP Blog explaining their unique model, “Players pay just one flat fee equivalent to 3% of their stack when they leave the table, this means that if two players sit down with $100 each in cash game, the total service-fee will be $6 regardless of how many hands or hours are played”. If a player quits the table with $0 earnings, he still won't be charged any fee.
A new lobby system called the FairPlay lobby is also introduced on the site, “where a smooth seating logic automatically managaes seating behaviour, prevents data mining, and restricts table observation. GSP believes that behaviors such as ‘bum hunting’ are against the spirit of the game”. A good decision like this is sure to give a big boost to many recreational players worldwide.
The Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma, also known as the Bah Koh-Je which literally means People of the Grey Snow, already operates four land-based casinos in Oklahoma. The GSP launch took three years to finalize, owing to some legal issues with the US government. The tribe finally secured federal certification in a US District Court and finally made their product available in the market.
There have been a couple of ventures in the past with a no-rake pricing model. One was the World Poker Exchange (WSEX), which introduced rake-free poker back in 2006. Their site however faced several issues like players trying to game the rake-free system among many others, and the site ultimately closed down. Another site, ZeroRake, launched in 2004, introduced a monthly subscription model, asking players to pay an introductory membership fee of $5.95 followed by a fee of $30 in following months. But the site didn’t grab enough eyeballs and went cold after a while.
Bobby Walkup, the chairman of the Iowa tribe of Oklahoma, had this to say, “We are thrilled to have launched a great new poker site that focuses on fairness. It’s time for a new type of poker room to come along, made by poker lovers, and recognizing what’s best for poker.”
George McIntosh, the former PokerStars executive and current GreySnowPoker MD was enthusiastic about the product, saying “We’re determined to make GreySnowPoker the world’s most reputable online poker destination, leading the way in integrity, innovation, fairness and fun”.
GSP is currently unavailable for real money in the US, as well as individually licensed countries such as the UK, Spain, Italy, France, Portugal, and others, but a statement released by the tribe in August 2016 is enthusiastic about future expansion to other countries, stating “The Iowa Tribe plans to work with every country and their head of States to build a new type of government relationship between the Government of the Iowa Tribe and international governments with their respective committees.”
Some trivia about the Iowa Tribe of Oklahoma for the history buffs out there:
The tribe is a self-governing body situated in Perkins, Oklahoma. In the Iowa language, the tribe calls themselves Baxoje (Bah Kho-je), meaning “People of the Grey Snow”. It was told that at one time the Iowa Tribe was 1100-strong. When the warriors returned to their village after leaving for some reason, they looked down upon the place from a heighted location and saw their entire village burned down to the ground. It could have been another tribe that could’ve burned it, they reckoned. The ash they saw spread across looked like grey snow from above, hence the name “People of the Grey Snow”.
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