Friday, April 29, 2011

Odd "discount"

I saw a message on Twitter earlier today pointing to this offer by Dusty Schmidt through his affiliate site. Black Chip Poker is part of the Merge network, which appears to be the largest U.S.-facing site left (assuming that you don't want to give your money to the thieves at Cereus). Good rakeback plus Schmidt's three e-books (I have been wanting to read Don't Listen to Phil Hellmuth, but had balked at the purchase price) seemed like a good deal to me, so I signed up, deposited $100 on my Visa card, which went through without a hitch. (Merge also has Mac client software, for those of you to whom that might be a deciding factor.)

I got this strange email from Black Chip soon thereafter:

"Your $100.00 Black Chip Poker Visa deposit has been approved. Please be aware that we have given you a discount on this transaction, in the range of 1 - 5 cents. You will still be credited the full amount of your deposit, however, you will be billed slightly less."

When I got the notification from the payment processor, the billed amount was actually $99.93.

I can't figure out the reason behind this. I don't think it's an artifact of foreign exchange rounding. I wonder if it's an attempt to slightly randomize the deposit amounts. I assume that $100 is a very common starting deposit, so maybe they think it will attract less scrutiny if there are not a whole bunch of transactions of precisely the same dollar amount.

Theories, anyone? Speculation? Informed answers?


Crash said...

Your hunch is correct. Most poker deposits are in even 100s. This disguises it.

Crash said...

I finally started depositing odd amounts, and the changes stopped. Yes, this admits I was a loser!

Anonymous said...

The first rule of fight club is you don't talk about fight club.

Anonymous said...

My deposit with a Chase card just got rejected. Would love a review of the Hellmuth book when you get it.

Mark T said...

The couple of times this happened to me in the past (on other networks), they wanted me also to type into their site the amount that was billed. For the cost of a couple pennies, they got another measure of surety that the account which they billed was mine.

Don't know if that applied to you in this case or not.

Drizztdj said...

It's to make sure it a legit account. PayPal does/did something similar and so did NetTeller.