After playing on and promoting Americas Cardroom for years on his YouTube channel, poker podcaster Joe “ChicagoJoey” Ingram released a shocking video yesterday urging players to steer clear of the site after allegedly finding evidence of cheating all the way up to the highest stakes games.
Ingram had obviously thought long and hard about making public his suspiscions, but reasoned that “I know I have to make this video” because, in his words, he has a “massive belief that there is widespread cheating through botting, through collusion, through potential superusing, and through players playing on more than one account at the highest stakes.”
It’s been fairly common knowledge for a long time that ACR has had a huge botting problem, and that the management seem reluctant to do very much about it. Ingram acknowledged that he wasn’t generally too concerned about the bots as they were “beatable”, but over recent months he’d noticed more and more appearing as well highly suspiscious play from a bunch of accounts.
Ingram claims to have spent hours of his time following certain accounts he suspects of cheating and has collated hours of footage of suspect play to back up his claims. He also said that prior to releasing this video he had contacted the boss of ACR, with whom he has a personal relationship after working on some videos and promos for them in the past. Ingram said he emailed the ACR boss telling him that he was going to put out a video voicing his concerns but that if he (ACR’s CEO) would like to see the evidence beforehand that he would be more than happy to share his evidence with him. The fact, said Joey, that it took the CEO six-days to get back to him showed that, “he doesn’t give a f**k”.
Ingram goes on to talk about how accounts seem to be popping up all the time these days, mainly from Eastern European countries but some registered in the US with extremely inauthentic playing styles and who’s stats suggest they are not playing a winning strategy – but that somehow they never lose or seem to pay off value bets, suggesting that ACR might even be looking at superuser problem.
One of the most shocking claims Ingram makes is that he has convincing recorded evidence of collusion at the $50/$100 PLO tables. Apparently he received a very detailed message regarding certain accounts, claiming that they are all run by the same person. Joey goes on to give the account names as, “create my own energy”, “green spirit”, and “44bars” and says that he has witnessed them playing together and has recorded the sessions.
A distressed looking Joey ends his 18 minute video admitting that he’s known about botting for a long time and that he has been aware of collusion at certain times also but that as he was still making money he didn’t really care; however, he says that such activities on ACR are just so widespread these days with suspiscious account after suspiscious account filling up the tables from the micro-stakes all the way up to the highest stakes that he simply cannot recommend anyone playing there any longer.
Messages on Joe Ingrams YouTube channel and on 2+2 seem mainly supportive and thankful for his bringing this activity to light, although a few make the fair point that although he talks about having evidence, that none has actually been provided in the video other than anecdotal and as such they remain unconvinced.
This isn’t the first time accusations of foul play at ACR have surfaced. Last year industry insider rumours surfaced regarding embezzlement at ACR specifically relating to BTC payments which (allegedly) went up to the highest levels of management at the company.