I find it irritating that when I feel like playing, the sites won't let me on until I have installed their latest software upgrade. This is particularly true for the sites like Full Tilt that, for whatever reason, release new versions every few days. This is most obnoxious when there's a specific tournament I'm signed up for, which is about to start, and then I have to endure the delay of the download before I can join in. Thankfully I'm past the days of using a dial-up connection, but I can imagine how painfully slow this process would be for those users.
If I were in charge of such operations, in the dialog box that asks for permission to install the latest version of the software, I'd also have an option to allow the user to play the current session with the older software, then download and install the newest version when logging off. That way it can occur in the background, and doesn't delay me getting to the games. It's such a simple and obvious fix--can it really be that nobody else has thought of this?
Every time you use some of the online poker sites, their software checks to see if you have a shortcut on your PC desktop, and if you don't, it sticks one there, without asking if you want it or not. I'm looking at you, Bodog, and you, Ultimate Bet. If I wanted a desktop shortcut, I would have put it there! It's not exactly the most complicated operation in the world. Instead, after every time I play on one of those sites, I have to delete the shortcut it installs. Yeah, it's only three seconds out of my life, but it's irritating nonetheless.
Drug-related screen names and avatars
For the life of me I can't figure out what the hell is wrong with people that they would choose a poker screen name with reference to their recreational drug use, particularly the ubiquitous "420." Look, as a good libertarian kind of guy, I don't care one bit what you ingest, inject, or inhale. But is that really the aspect of your life that is most important to you, or of which you are most proud, such that you decided to advertise it to the poker-playing world?
Let me put it this way: If your blazin' is such a prominent feature of your existence that when presented with an opportunity to select a screen name (and, on some sites, upload a graphic representation of yourself), something by which you will be uniquely recognized by every other user of the site, you decided that "Canabus" or "Toke dealer" or "420player" was what best encapsulated who you are, you're a loser, with problems much deeper than you realize.
I created an account on the newish "Players Only" site last night, and discovered that somebody had already taken the screen name of "Rakewell." This is theft, pure and simple! I am the one and only Rakewell! That is my name on Full Tilt, Absolute, UB, Party Poker (if they ever let U.S. players back in), Bodog, Cake Poker, and a bunch of other minor ones that I've never even used, but signed up just to stake my claim to the name. (The exception is Poker Stars; several years ago somebody had already taken the name there before I signed up.) It is also what I use on all the online poker forums. Now I'm stuck with the lame "Rakewell1."
Give me back my God-given screen name!
Friday, January 18, 2008