Is Online Poker Losing its Mainstream Appeal? No WayIs online poker losing its appeal? In a word, no.
While some of the corporate and poker industry "experts" are ringing alarm bells that online poker is slowing down, the reality is that online poker was on a small summer vacation. Seriously. With the summer season came slower numbers, but isn't that to be expected? Like anybody, online poker enthusiasts enjoy the summer months for the same reasons we all do - fun in the sun, long weekends at the cabin, vacations, camping... you know, outdoors stuff. Summer is a chance to kick back and relax, spend time with the family and stay away from the rigors and grinds of everyday life. And it's the same for the online poker junkie, who will likely spend most of his or her winter months running up that bankroll. So while numbers for June, July and August were showing some decline, the reality is that those numbers reflect more about human nature than any perceived downward spiral of online poker.
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One of the biggest subsections skewing numbers is the college and university set. As you've probably realized, post-secondary students make up a large percentage of the online poker world. Excess hours of downtime, accessibility to computers and the ability to hang out in dimly lit dorms for days at a time make college kids the perfect fit for playing online. As such, it's not hard to see why online poker takes a huge hit during the summer - these kids aren't in school! They're out grinding at banal summer jobs, trying to scratch out tuition, and, of course, a new bankroll for the online poker season.
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But there are other contributing factors that are seeing the summer "blahs" fade away. Across the pond, online poker markets in Europe and Asia continue to grow, and the game is more popular than it has ever been. While online poker has largely been a North American phenomenon in recent years, the global expansion has really done wonders for its popularity. With the geographical advantages landlocked European countries have, the chance to win online satellite tourneys and travel the continent playing land-based games has made online poker a real phenomenon. If you can parlay sitting in front of your computer to trips to poker meccas like Monaco, Barcelona and London, why wouldn't you? It's just another one of the many incentives to playing online, and proof that online poker is as strong as ever.
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Mostly though, the biggest reason online poker is still appealing is because it's one of the best hobbies going. It's a competitive environment that you can join from anywhere, so long as you've got internet access and a chair. Although, we do suppose you could play standing, or, if that doesn't work, in some sort of convoluted Yoga position (squatting dog, anybody?) So log on today and check out all the ways you can get in the game. Losing its appeal? Heck, online poker is just getting hot again.
by at 1800-sports.com on November 20, 2008
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