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The Org newsletter
Brad Willis
Posted on: November 02, 2023 08:10 PDT

Back in the heady wild west days of online poker, I established The 80/20 Rule for my news reporting as an industry insider. I kept my eyes and ears open 100%, no matter where I was or what I was covering. Yet, I would write and report only 20%. The other 80%? I saved most of that for stories at the bar. 

Why? Lots of reasons, but mostly, if I reported publicly about that 80%, PokerStars would have fired me. My old haunt, the PokerStars Blog, wasn’t the place to talk about which online poker titan was carrying duffel bags of cash to snap-sponsor and patch-up players at the WSOP. I couldn’t write about how a team of dealers was in trouble for swimming with the Atlantis sharks. I certainly had to avoid an inside account of Mexican federales raiding a tournament and holding everything inside (TV equipment, chips, tables, and money) hostage for more than a month. I never liked The 80/20 Rule, but I had to live by it.

And now, I don’t. 

Nevertheless, there are things that don’t necessarily belong on the front page of PokerOrg. Some stories are too Inside Baseball to merit a public airing. Others are a little too gossipy to be considered news. Other stuff is really interesting but trivial just the same. 

All of us here at PokerOrg have this stuff bouncing around in our heads and notebooks, and we need to do something with it. Moreover, we want to share these stories with you like we once might have around a bar or watercooler. And so, we’re about to launch…The Org, a weekly newsletter from inside PokerOrg.

What is The Org newsletter?

We’re proud of the fact we’re an independent poker news organization. We don’t have corporate overlords telling us what we can and can’t write. We don’t have to sweat shareholder meetings. Yes, we make editorial decisions every day, but no one else is making those decisions for us. We make those decisions the way we do because we are part of the poker community we serve. We’ve decided we need more ways to share stories with the people in this community.

Some folks will remember all the ways the poker community used to share stories and news. People my age lived on RGP, old-school poker blogs, and 2+2’s NVG. One of my favorite things to do was read the Tilt Boys’ trip reports  (here’s a link to a copy of one from–and I’m not even kidding–1995). 

For years (and, frankly, up until very recently), Twitter was a reasonable way to sate the need for sharing whatever stories were worth discussing, but it was messy and full of constant static. And now…well, Twitter isn’t even Twitter anymore, and–as far as I’m concerned–it’s not a place I find very fun to share or read stories anymore. 

Next Tuesday, November 7, everyone who signs up will get The Org newsletter delivered to their inbox once a week. Inside will be a quick update on the news and events that have interested us the most over the past week. You’ll also get an insider look at the stories we can’t or won’t tell on the front page of the website. It’s where we can dump the best of our notebooks as we go around the world with the rest of poker’s traveling circus. 

We think a lot about these kinds of conversations, and our thinking has turned into many different things we have in the lab. The Org is one of the first we’ll be rolling out. 

If you'd like to sign up to have The Org delivered directly to your inbox for free every week, you can subscribe right here. Just enter your name and email address below, and you’ll be the first to receive the very first copy of The Org.

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