Poker Marketing Backfires

SaddamYes, another guerilla (or gorilla depending on your taste) marketing stunt. Online poker site Pokershow decided to drum up a little PR by putting up a video aimed at being offensive to Muslims then creating a fake Muslim activists group to protest the video.

The idea was that this would take off as a viral marketing campaign. I’m guessting that either they either didn’t get enough traction or they had planned on being douche bags right from the get go.

The text of the press release they sent out is below:

Controversial Suicide Bomber Viral is available at

New York, NY (PRWEB via PR Web Direct) February 23, 2006 — In an effort to promote its new website, released a viral video entitled “Suicide Bomber”. The viral includes scantily clad Poker Show Girls and characters including Osama Bin Laden. It is set to music, written and performed by the British cult artist Cursor Minor. The viral was released by over the internet last week. It was produced simply as a promotional video to attract viewers to There was no intention to insult anyone and had no wish to make any political statement.

A spokesperson for states, “This viral was not meant to show our allegiance or encouragement of terrorism or war. We do not support acts of terrorism nor do we encourage any type of prejudice against the Islamic culture or women. The video producers might have used the viral as their way of telling the world to take a moment and relax from harsh realities. takes no position except to continue to promote good clean entertainment and fun. We wish that the video would be seen in this light. Unfortunately certain media, in particular the website, do not. will support freedom of speech and expression and will not be intimidated by senseless rhetoric and bullying while at the same time we emphasize we support women’s rights and will not denigrate either sex, and race or religion.”

Founded in 2005 has been launched as an online gaming experience for the new generation of poker players using Playtech Software. Aimed at young adults who are driven, successful and stylish, offers these players a sexy and glamorous playing experience complete with the Pokershow Girls acting as hostesses.

The site features all the contemporary games, promotions and tournaments any poker player of the internet generation will require, and has solid customer support and payment options.

Gwen Toline
Molepolole LLC

via The Gambling Weblog and Adrants.

[tags]online poker, stupid pr stunts, stupid marketing tricks, publicity stunts[/tags]

Bill Rini
Bill Rini is currently the Head of Online Poker for WSOP. He has been working in the online poker industry since 2004 and has held management roles at Full Tilt Poker and PartyPoker.

One thought on “Poker Marketing Backfires”

  1. Weird story. But somehow it is not that bad idea at all…, if you find a less embarassing topic to go viral…

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