Pre-registration began on February 26th for the 38th World Series of Poker®, to be held at the Rio All-Suites Hotel & Casino® in Las Vegas. The 2007 WSOP begins on June 1st and runs through July 17, with rules and registration information now available at the worldseriesofpoker.com site.
One notable change for this year's WSOP is the introduction of a newly-created $10,000 'WSOP' casino chip, which will be accepted for registration and will likely see common use as the payout 'lammer' for satellite-qualifier winners. The new chip joins smaller Rio chip denominations, wire transfers, cashier's checks, credit-card cash advances and cash itself as acceptable payment methods for event registration, accompanying payment forms that can now be found at the World Series of Poker online site. Pre-registration remains open until two weeks prior to the start of any given event.
The updated rules also clarify third-party registrations as well, reading as follows: "Third-party registrations for players are not permitted unless submitted by Official WSOP Sponsors; Official WSOP promotions or product licensee, or civic, charitable, business, casino and other land-based entities officially licensed to conduct satellite tournaments for the 2007 WSOP. No third-party registrations will be accepted from online gaming sites conducting business with U.S. residents."
Harrah's has also extensively revamped its apparel policy, complete with an explanation of exactly what types of '.com' advertising will remain off-limits. The comprehensive rules changes clearly represent a sweeping move to bring players' appearances more in line with corporate expectations. The start of the relevant section, Rule #34, offers this:
"Tournament participants may wear apparel with multiple logos, patches or promotional language. However, no individual logo, patch or block of promotional language is to be larger than 12 square inches." The rule then provides a lengthy list of prohibited forms of logos, advertising, and general apparel. The two key prohibitions relating to online gambling sites are these:
"(i) Advertise a dot.com gaming site that conducts business with U.S. residents." [such advertising is prohibited]
"(k) In addition, all logos, patches, and promotional language for any dot.net website must contain a clear and visible 'dot.net' suffix at least the same size as the site name."
Additional clauses place a ban on any beer or liquor advertising excepting title sponsor Milwaukee's Best Light or other Miller Brewing products; place a general ban on apparel referencing drugs, tobacco, firearms, pornography, other forms of gambling; ban certain types of 'commentary' clothing that could be considered injurious to other parties, and, of course, give the final say-so to Harrah's in any matter of dispute.
The "twelve square inches" rule, allowing for such things as a 3" x 4" rectangular patch bearing a logo, effectively eliminates the jersey-style advertising so prevalent on the floor of the Amazon Room last year. However, the new clarifications pave the way for poker apparel to enter the modern world of corporate and business endorsements.
The World Series of Poker's commissioner, Jeffery Pollack, served up this comment on the topic: "In recognition of the endorsement agreements that provide income to many poker players, we've liberalized our policy to allow tournament entrants to wear apparel with multiple logos and patches. There are some reasonable restrictions on what is permissible, but this is definitely a far more liberal, accommodating and player-friendly policy."