Established high stakes poker pro and businessman Phil Galfond made headlines Wednesday when he announced the upcoming launch of Run It Once Poker, which is scheduled to begin operations early next year.

Phil Galfond: A Poker Site Should (Aug 31, 2016)

The news has picked up plenty of steam in the community based TwoPlusTwo NVG Forum thread, with over 200 replies within 24 hours of being posted, along with another 100 comments to the online cash game specialist’s blog entry.

Although little is known about how the new poker site will conduct business at this time, Galfond’s personal missive hints at an evolved, all-inclusive way of treating customers of every skill level; prioritizing accountability and realistic interaction with its future player base.

[A poker site] can’t seek to please everyone by making changes that hurt the business, but it shouldn’t ignore the public. It should be held accountable for the decisions it makes. It should be able to explain itself in a way that reasonable customers will understand. -Phil Galfond

Grassroots Support for Next-Gen Poker Personalities

The fact that Phil Galfond will soon be extending his industry reach to the “poker operator” realm is more than intriguing, as most poker fans are already aware of the community ire directed towards the world’s largest poker site.

A combination of circumstances and events has altered the trajectory of Internet Poker in recent years. And a once-booming industry led by a pro-friendly PokerStars has turned sour with rampant forum disconnects between sites and their non-recreational players.

However, ill-will towards many sites’ rake and customer rewards policies has prompted the increasingly-engaged community to ascend next gen personalities alongside the game’s top tier promotional hierarchy that had previously been occupied by names such as Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth and Phil Ivey. In growing numbers, poker enthusiasts are embracing pros who are willing to communicate on sensitive topics basically until they can no longer think of anything else to add to the discussion.

Popular Twitch Poker live stream sessions hosted by Run It Up founder Jason Somerville and UpswingPoker featured pro Doug Polk pique the interests of thousands of concurrent viewers who eagerly tune-in for complete, nearly uninterrupted access to their favorite pro’s daily poker routine. The same can be said for Poker Life Podcast host Joey Ingram, who has helped pull off what many insiders previously believed to be impossible — making big-namers comfortable relaying their informed thoughts to the public.

Through his contributions over the past decade, Phil Galfond has also managed to earn the goodwill support of undoubtedly the most difficult platform on which to do so, the TwoPlusTwo News, Views & Gossip forum.

More Redemption for Poker Community?

Thanks to the concise, genuine outreach that pros such as Galfond have endorsed through their actions since arriving on the poker scene, it appears the community will soon bear witness to an event many fans worldwide have been itching to experience an interactive ringside seat to… a modern-day online poker site tweaked to engage in meaningful discussion with a larger portion of its customers.

The high stakes pro known online as OMGClayAiken or Jman28 enjoys sufficient trust among a critical forum and poker media mass to give his efforts a reasonable chance at success in what is expected to be one of the boldest, innovative attempts to revitalize online poker since Black Friday.

Galfond does not promise a return to the glory days of Internet Poker, but rather commits to taking the project on at full force with an informed group of supporters and even a few naysayers tagging-along for the ride.

The Maryland native’s introductory follow-up on the 2+2 boards suggests a potential connection between players and a poker operator that hasn’t been seen in our industry since PokerStars’ purchase of Full Tilt Poker in 2012.

We’ll all be reading your suggestions and ideas and bringing them up for discussion. Many of these posts have been very intelligent and insightful, which is what I hoped for and expected from the poker community. Thanks again. -Phil Galfond, 2+2 (Sept 1, 2016)

Run It Once Poker‘s pending entry into the online poker market is sure to become a mainstream story by the end of the week, and has already received exclusive coverage from Ingram, who posted a written summary and YouTube clip to his personal website,, Thursday afternoon.

Note: As ChicagoJoey points out in his video, Run It Once Poker will not serve the United States market at launch.

Is it possible for a successful, well-connected pro to break into the poker operator segment in a meaningful way? Will the poker community have the last word when it comes to how best to run a poker site? Will Galfond’s vision miss the flop entirely due to what doubters may deem an environment too difficult to succeed in?

One way or another, the news is now public — and we’re all about to find out for ourselves how smart or misinformed we are when it comes to crystal-balling what’s in store for online poker in 2017!

Follow Phil Galfond on Twitter: @PhilGalfond
Follow David Huber on Twitter: @dhubermex