Microgaming Network to Block Data Mining
The Microgaming Network announced this past Thursday that it is taking step to curb data mining of hand histories such as those that led to the Isildur1 controversy. From this point on, any sites on the network will no longer save hand histories on players computers and users will no longer be able to download hand histories in bulk.
There are many players that are heralding this decision and thinks that sites such as Full Tilt and PokerStars should follow suit. However, has anyone stopped to think about a few things that this type of policy could bring about?
Remember the Pitbull Poker scandal? What was one of the things that tipped players off that something was amiss? The fact that the site would not give out hand histories. How did players figure out that UltimateBet players were cheating other players? Hand histories again allowed players to figure this out.
So, for the sake of satisfying a few players that think that players should not have the advantage given by data mining, we may now have a precedence set into motion that will allow future websites to rob their players blind. What are players going to do in the future when the next Pitbull Poker crops up with superusers? "Im sorry, we cannot give you hand histories to review as it is against our anti data mining policy."
Granted, my scenario borders on conspiracy theory, but at the same time, it can become a real possibility. Perhaps other sites will come up with a solution to this issue that doesn't potentially give the Russ Hamilton's of the world outs to cheat players in the future.