Esports and poker do share something in common. Both activities used to be marginalized. There was little respect for either of those, one looked down upon as a waste of time, and the other, perceived as what comes after wasting too much time – addiction, reckless spending, falling into debt.
Security at Poker Events – It Matters
Esports and poker today share a common distribution channel – Twitch. Not only that, but poker players openly drop out of the game to pursue their dreams as esports athletes, or failing that, by running companies dedicated to the segment.
The latest familiarity between the two seemingly distinct products, though, is occasioned by the recent shoot-out that took place in Jacksonville, Florida, where the EA’s NFL Madden Qualifier was held. A fellow player went on a killing spree on Sunday, injuring 10 and killing two. His decision to gun down fellow players, while not clearly established, was probably occasioned by a serious drubbing he took in the video game he was competing in.
Following the shoot-out, Electronic Arts (EA), the company developing the game and hosting the esports scene, stated that all other events would be cancelled until such a time that security measures are revaluated.
It’s not difficult to imagine a similar scenario applied to poker. When you come staking hundreds or thousands of dollars, a heavy loss may be the tipping point for someone. It has already happened, although, the incident that took place at the European Poker Tour in Berlin in 2010 only highlighted that it may be worth tightening security. Back in 2010, a group of Good Fellows-styled robbers walked into Grand Hyatt Hotel and ran away with $1.2 million in poker proceedings.
One of the critics of gun violence, Poker Ambassador Mike Sexton went on Twitter to say that measures need to be taken if the United States were to curb senseless shootings.
It’s a sad state of affairs but it should be obvious by now that if we want to curb senseless shootings (inside buildings anyway), we need to install metal detectors at every school, arena, & store/building where there is substantial traffic. #toomanynutcases #solutionsneeded
— Mike Sexton (@Mike_partypoker) August 27, 2018
The Struggling Majority in Poker
Poker players are under a lot of strain, especially the semi-professionals who want to make a big name for themselves. Tournament put even a greater strain. While with esports you commit time to prepare yourself for a tournament, worst case scenario, you end up failing and holding down a job later. Poker may set you back with your life’s savings, for example. A scenario that is not too difficult to imagine.
However, unlike esports, poker players generally cave in to the way things are run. Players are usually polite, quiet and even if they are rude, they still maintain airs. With esports, players are rather glibber and the exchange of taunts is not unusual. Surprisingly, this make esports athletes and gamers in general irater than poker players who need to be composed to make sure they will make the cut to the next stage.
However, the issue remains – what bars someone who had packed heat and brought it to an event to take it out on fellow players? Not much right now. Security will certainly need to be improve while the lingering ghost of unwarranted gun violence looms over the United States.