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Isildur1 Was NOT Cheated

22 December 2009, By: compncards
brian hastings 04
brian hastings 04

So now there is a controversy brewing regarding Isildur1's losses to Brian Hastings. Hastings told Gary Wise of that “Obviously I'm happy and I'll take it, but Brian [Townsend] did a ton of work. The three of us discussed a ton of hands and the reports that Brian made, so I'm very thankful to him and to Cole as well."

Apparently Hastings received 30,000 hands to go with a database of 20,000 hands that he already had on Isildur1. Apparently, this is against Full Tilt's Terms of Service and as a result Hastings has had his red pro status suspended for a month. He had also discussed the hands with Brian Townsend and Cole South to develop strategy against Isildur1

Several sites have spun off from this and now Hastings and now some people are going as far as to call them cheaters. I don't get this. I personally think that this is a total non-issue. I've been commenting on a couple of sites today and my take is that what the three did is no different than many other players do for live poker. If there is information out there on a particular player and someone knows that they are going to play them, they are going to use it.

For example, in 2004, Annie Duke watched video of the 2004 WSOP on ESPN to pick up a tell on Greg Raymer. She admitted as much in her book after winning the title. She said that the tell she picked up helped her to make a big laydown. After reading this, did Greg go out and say "Annie should give me part of the winning because it isn't fair." No, he probably went and looked at the tapes to see what the tell was.

In the case of Isildur1, Tony G, owner of, posted the following on his blog:

"The bad part of it all is that there appears to be no answer to help Isildur1. A Red Pro getting a penalty doesn’t change the matter of his poker losses and the fact that he was at a disadvantage with all of it. I believe he can come back because he is a young kid and lots of talent. It has to be a huge learning tool for him."

Of course there is no answer to help Isildur1. Why should there be? If you go into Bobby's Room and play against Ivey and the rest and later on Doyle and Ivey discuss my play, is that cheating? No. When a player goes into a poker room, they are at the mercy of the other players skills and their ability to gather information on them. If someone is around enough, players are going to talk. And face it, there are friends, teams, etc in poker. It is part of the game.

If they want to suspend Hastings for admitting that he data mined, fine. However, don't accuse him of cheating. He took advantage of the information available to him and developed a strategy to beat Isildur1. If Cole South or Brian Townsend had sat with Hastings while he played or they played his account, that would have been a different matter. That is not what happened.

Online poker is very different than live poker and there is much more information out there. People can learn a lot about your play in a very short amount of time and without you knowing who they are. It is a fact. If you cannot deal with that reality, then go back to playing live poker.

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  • كازينو 09/08/2010 1:20am (11 years ago)

    Hi guys, tried loading this blog through Google RSS reader and got a strange error message, any ideas what could be the issue?

  • compncards 31/12/2009 7:08pm (11 years ago)

    "Now, on the other hand, “Isildur1″ should have been (and probably was) aware that data is collected, and shared, by those he wants to play with." Exactly. And if he was aware of it, then why wait until someone slips up and admits it before making your suspicions heard. He just wants to be a crybaby after losing all that money.

    Duke watching video on Raymer is disingenuous rhetoric eh? Whether the WSOP had those rules or not was not key to my point. My point is that data sharing and to a lesser extent, data collection on players is an accepted practice in live poker.

    Torturous logic and disingenuous rhetoric....that makes me sound republican....or democrats selling health care....

  • Joe 31/12/2009 4:01pm (11 years ago)

    Your torturous logic does not make your case. Your argument may be successful in convincing Full Tilt to change it's rules to be more in line with the reality of the game... but the rules were broken, and Hastings was wrong.

    Now, on the other hand, "Isildur1" should have been (and probably was) aware that data is collected, and shared, by those he wants to play with.

    Your argument that Duke's watching video of Raymer, and picking up a tell, is the same as the data sharing situation is disingenuous rhetoric. Only if the WSOP had a rule prohibiting the watching of poker on TV, would your argument hold up.

  • Mark 30/12/2009 8:29am (11 years ago)

    Thank you for being the voice of reason. This is the world's biggest non-issue. This shows how irrational people can be.

  • compncards 29/12/2009 6:46pm (11 years ago)

    The WSOP makes you sign over your firstborn child. Even if it is against the sites "Terms of Service", I cannot deem something cheating that is considered a normal and intelligent practice in live poker. Those that hide behind the TOS in this case are pretty much conceding that they do not have the skills to play poker. You are supposed to mix up your play in poker. Isildur1 failed to adapt and got jacked.

  • adam 29/12/2009 1:01pm (11 years ago)

    does the wsop make you agree to terms and conditions that you wont do that before being allowed to play there??? compareing online sites rules to live tourney rules isnt going to work here. did they cheat .. yes cause full tilts rules say they did.