Ok well more like 9.5 days later.
This will likely be the last post I make regarding Black Friday unless something major develops. This whole situation is so messed up and I don't really see that much point in rehashing catastrophic developments that are at the same time meaningless to discuss with the same people who experienced the whole thing. What's the point in discussing the bomb that we all witnessed go if in front of us with the people who witnessed it or personally had their legs blown off? It is what it is and it feels like the poker community is powerless to do anything about those issues anyways. More disjointed thoughts to follow -- probably not going to link source very much of it since it's fairly easy to find all over the place and this is more my opinion than anything.
The Good (Great!) News
Much to everyone's surprise and contrary to popular predictions just prior stating no one would see a penny within 6 months if ever, there has been a remarkably fast deal made between the sites -- Stars and iirc FTP, unsure about UB as of right now -- and the DOJ to get the players' money back to them once a suitable processor mechanism is decided on.
Business partnership deals hastily cancelled between casinos and online sites.
TV poker being cancelled left and right. ESPN and Fox Sports both cancelling all of the online site produced shows. Who knows if ESPN is even going to cover the WSOP now that a ton of the money to run the production is gone.
All that build up of the illusion of legitimacy has vanished.
The continued silence from sponsored pros who normally have everything to say about anything is becoming rather deafening.
I lose a little more respect for Doyle every time he opens his mouth.
So to sum up the current situation:
People that should be speaking up are not. People that should not be speaking are.
All of the rats that were more than happy to take a ride on the "illegal" Stars/FTP/UB pirate ship and take their share of the plunder and knew that the DOJ armada was lurking somewhere cloaked in stealth mode have abandoned ship and are trying to save face by distancing themselves from those dirty, criminal pirates now that the DOJ has opened fire.
There's a ton more stuff going on out there but it just makes me very pessimistic even thinking about it so I think I'll leave it at that.
What I'm going to watch for from this point on:
Legal proceedings, if any actually go forward.
Where the player pool gravitates to.
Developments in competition between sites or continued lack thereof.
Watching for a wild turn of events somewhere in the world that could trigger a new mini-boom.
Working hard and preparing my game for the next mini-boom if it happens.
Preparing my life for that hissing sound of the online poker flame going out if it doesn't.
On a positive note to end this, online poker has effectively hit near rock bottom. At least as close as it can get while still being profitable and worth playing. There's only moving up from here. A year in this industry is 5 years in the real world. 5 years online is an eternity. Just remember, 5 years ago Party was the biggest site on the planet. Anything is possible.