The iPoker network released a new network policy today. The statement confirms the year's earlier rumours of a divided network that will see a number of smaller licenses likely perish.
The new policy will apply to all operators from July 1st, with the network split scheduled for September 2012. The release states that:
"iPoker has decided to extend the network policy to include specific quality standards that would regulate the interaction between the various card rooms. Failing to meet any of these standards will cause a separation of the card room from the network main liquidity pool."
The new policy stresses that operators failing to meet the criteria, will not be kicked off the network, but will only have access to the secondary player pool. These licenses will still enjoy benefits from being part of the network, but will only enjoy a smaller and likely more savvy player pool. Some poker rooms who fear being banished to this sub-network have voiced concerns that this secondary pool will be unappealing to players and perish. It comes as no surprise that other rooms believe this is only fair and just.
The main piece of performance criteria that smaller operators will struggle to overcome, is the requirement to maintain a minimum volume of 6,000 active real money players. A real money player is defined as one that generates more than $1 in rake. Moreover, rooms are also required to inject 850 monthly new active real money players.
Aside from the room no longer being a part of the network's main liquidity pool, financial penalties have also been outlined in the document. Win/Loss and Shark/Fish ratio fines have been longstanding on a number of poker networks including iPoker.
The new policy is aimed to ensure iPoker becomes a softer network, that encourages recreational players and promotes a more enjoyable playing experience. Sources close to PokerUpdate have revealed that, they look forward to seeing licenses invest more into marketing their poker product as they get their house in order and ready for iPoker2.
It is thought that the network's sportsbook operators are the most likely to fulfil all the criteria required to be a part of the main player pool, that looks likely to be dubbed 'iPoker2'.