Unless you've been under a rock for the past 12 days, you've undoubtedly heard the news that sent shockwaves through the online poker world -- the shutdown of the three biggest poker sites in the United States: PokerStars, Full Tilt Poker, and Absolute Poker. The whole thing plays out like a modern day Catch Me If You Can, with executives fleeing the country, a kid from Australia stealing $100 million from the poker giants, and a myriad of other apparent movie plot-lines.
Hey Spielberg, if you're ready (wouldn't that be something!), you should totally make this movie, I'll gladly go pay the nine dollars!
What is interesting about this whole thing is the impact that these shutdowns have on the rest of the market. When I first heard the news it didn't even cross my mind that traffic to PokerRPG would increase since I don't necessarily see PokerRPG as a competitor to the big three. Nonetheless, it appears people love their poker, and if they lose one source, they'll gladly take their business elsewhere.
I didn't want to post about this too quickly, assuming it was just an anomaly at first, but now 12 days after the shutdowns, PokerRPG has sustained around a 60% increase in page views ever since April 15. This could all of course be some coincidence, but considering no other outside forces such as new advertising campaigns or anything else I can find, it seems more than likely that this is no coincidence.
What do you all think? Coincidence or direct correlation? How do you see this shutdown affecting online poker as a whole?