The Chinese government has been able to take control of the poker industry where they have asked Tencent to pull down a popular poker app in the country. This was expected after it was reported that China was no longer looking at poker as a competitive mind sport. Beijing said that it would be illegal to offer and promote poker on social media.
Reports from Reuters said that Tencent Holdings would fold Everyday Texas Hold’em on 25th of September 2018. Tencent is the operator of the country’s largest social media platform in China. This is WeChat which was able to generated $34 million worth of revenue last year.
After Tencent learnt about the crackdown at the beginning of this year, they got rid of the World Series of Poker app from the WeChat app stors. This is according to the Inside Asian Gaming. The WSOP and Tencent had a partnership to assist in the education and growth of the competitive game of poker in Asia. Later in the year the WSOP and Tencent hosted a couple of live events on the Chinese Island Hainan.
They said that the Tencent poker players will receive financial compensations based on guidelines provided by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. A number of users of the virtual money poker platform usually use middlemen services to make transfers of cash out their winnings.
This move has come after a wide crackdown on online gambling. Macau is the only place in China where you will find casino style gambling legal. They have a myriad of bitcoin poker sites that you can enjoy for real money. Some years back, Beijing did a crackdown on corruption in the Macau gaming sector and this made revenues from gambling to go down. For the past two years Macau has been on recovery but there is an on-going trade conflict between USA and China and this could bring trouble for the Las Vegas based casinos who have gambling entities in Macau.
In another twist of events, multiple live poker events in Macau were scrapped after the tournaments were unable to get approval from the government. It was not a surprise that poker has been dropped. In the past Tencent has had to change a few things about a game known as Playerunknown’s Battleground because it severely deviated from socialist core values. These changes were not influenced by the fact that this is a gambling game but by the nature of the content. Some content has also been targeted by the Chinese government because of addiction concerns.
On this note about addiction, it is real for some gamers. Tencent will be making stringent moves on this by checking identities and ages of players on the popular Honor of Kings video game against a police database to pinpoint suspected irrational consumption by minors. Tencent continued to say that this is a great concern and will be applied to other games in the future. They said that one of their goals is to makes sure that children are getting healthy online access.