Speaking of the Two Plus Two Pokercast, I was invited to jump in for a brief segment during this week’s show to talk about the passing of Amarillo Slim Preston. I arrive around the 1:20 mark, I believe, coming on after Greg Dinkin who co-authored Preston’s memoir Amarillo Slim in a World of Fat People. Dinkin also wrote an interesting column on Grantland this week about his experiences with Preston.
During the early part of the show, co-hosts Mike Johnson and Adam Schwartz spent a little while discussing the forums being down, and had 2+2 “Grand Poobah” Mason Malmuth on as well to give an update. It sounds like it may be another week or so before the site is up and running again.
As I mentioned last Friday, a hacker apparently gained access to 2+2 members’ encrypted passwords as well as their email addresses. The hacker showed an ability to decrypt the passwords as well. It sounds like whoever did it went into the moderators’ forum and posted some of the mods’ passwords, thus proving the site had been compromised.
In that post last week I mentioned how the longer the 2+2 forums remain down, the more obvious the forums’ status in the poker world as a kind of central “meeting place” will become apparent. Mike and Adam noted on the show how a lot of poker news sites essentially take cues from 2+2 when it comes to identifying stories about which to write and even researching them, and I think for the most part they’re probably right.
We live in an age where Twitter and other types of social networking assure that most newsworthy items -- or even just gossip -- will get passed around quickly enough to grab the attention of most in a hurry. In other words, it’s not like the absence of 2+2 means the poker world doesn’t have other ways of communicating with each other or learning what’s happening. Still, it’s interesting to imagine how exactly last week’s story of PokerStars’ potential purchase of Full Tilt Poker might have gotten passed around -- and received -- had it not begun with that anonymous post on 2+2.
On the one hand, if security issues remain, it’s certainly good for 2+2 to keep the forums down until those issues can be resolved and everyone who logs into the site can be assured their privacy won’t be unduly compromised.
Then again, the longer the forums remain down, the more time we have to wonder about what might have happened with regard to the security breach, and maybe to start accumulating some doubts about the forums going forward. Not to mention ponder whether or not the hacker might have made off with some truly interesting (or damaging) PMs (personal messages) -- e.g., previously private information related to the many scandals in poker explored on 2+2 over the years.
Something like that would make for some interesting poker news. Or some good gossip, anyway.