Bodog Poker Website Ceased In Judgement

by Jeremy Schoemaker on August 28, 2007 · 114 comments

Earlier today the Bodog website (bodog.com) went down. Many people thought it was just technical issues. A good friend inside Bodog pinged me and told me that the site was actually yanked out from under Bodog’s hands earlier today.

Apparently, some guy in the US who was awarded a patent for something to do with taking bets online filed a lawsuit against Bodog awhile back. Bodog didn’t respond because they are not a US company. So a judge awarded a default judgment of 50 million.

Yesterday, the guy with the judgment used it to seize control of Bodog’s domain names from Enom. Almost all of their sites are now offline, and now they are going to loose all of their SERPS.

I am sure this will make some big news tomorrow. You can see Calvin’s explanation here

So if your looking for bodog here is the new bodog.

Crazy eh?

full disclosure

About the author...

– who has written 2856 posts on ShoeMoney.com.

Jeremy "ShoeMoney" Schoemaker is the founder & CEO of the ShoeMoney Blog, Elite Retreat Internet Conference, & the PAR Program. In 2013 Jeremy released his #1 Amazon Best selling Autobiography titled "Nothing's Changed But My Change" - The ShoeMoney Story. Jeremy currently lives in Lincoln Nebraska with his wife and 2 daughters.


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{ 105 comments }

1 abednego

I feel as though this will not last long. There are strong laws prohibiting patents from extending over international boundaries. I wonder how the patent owner in the United States was able to take control so easily. Sucks to be bodog!

2 Ian

was it by i2corp.com (ticker: ITOO)? I hope so because I own 40k shares of that penny stock.

3 Andrew

I find this very interesting, that one’s domain name is held to be in the USA, even if the rest of the hardware and operation is outside. This is something to consider for everyone who thinks they do not have US ties but have a .com

4 Dan Nedelko

The company in question is 1st Technology LLC, the judgement was handed down in King County. The total amount for the judgement was $49M (approx.) now the sketchy thing her is that generally only WIPO resolves domain disputes.

1st Technologies LLC is well known for going after gaming companies for their patent on “internet casino” – if you are interested in looking at the direct URL’s with references email me.

There are alot of theories floating around out there at this point in timie but they are just that. Theories.

5 Dan Nedelko

Yeah if I typed in my own email correctly it might be easier…long long day today.

6 Peter

The lesson here is, if you business outside US, buy your domains from a registrar outside USA. Also make sure you review their terms of services.

Anyone can sue anything in the US, and most registrars doing business in US will be required by law bend over.

7 Nick Sullivan

Just read that Bodog say their having some DNS issues but everything is fine and they’ll continue as normal.

8 David Ledoux

This is insane…makes me sick. Some corrupt judge in Hicksville USA in the pocket of the FBI no doubt. Frightening to internet entrepreneur’s who compete with the US government in a market niche…

9 Ian

I’d love to contact you for the links. Where is your contact info on your website? I can’t find it.

10 king jacob

Is betting online still legal in the USA?

11 DonnyC

So, this guy now owns the domains but will never collect the $49 mil, right? Looks like he needs someone to monetize all the traffic he will be getting :)

What a lame call by that judge. He was definitely paid off.

12 chon

perhaps he should just join their affiliate program? ;)

13 WebGuerrilla

The judge wasn’t lame. Bodog did not show up for the hearing. When that happens, the plaintiff wins by default and is awarded a summary judgment based solely on the testimony they provided.

Once you have a summary judgment you can use it to force just about anyone controlling assets of the defendant to turn them over to you.

14 CPA Affiliates

very interesting… as always a no show means admiting guilt or innocence for the other party either way it ends up in the appearing persons favor…

15 CPA Affiliates

If you ask the US government Yes.

16 Travel Notebook

I got the email and thought it was a Phishing attempt at first. So funny that this happened. Bodog is one of the worst sites to play poker on anyways so it I could care less. Their software is so buggy and limits you to only 3 tables at a time.

17 jim

Yeah but if they consider the enom registration as a US asset, can’t they claim it? I’m surprised their lawyers didn’t foresee this…

18 jim

hahaha stock pumping hits shoemoney.com :)

19 king jacob

Then what was the issue with poker and gambling sites being sut down in the US a while back

20 Paul.

That is crazy. They should have paid attention to him.

21 Paul.

So they make their cash suing internet casios?

22 sitefever

That really sucks. I used to go play some fake money blackjack games there.

23 Knuckles10

Awesome splash page at the “Calvins Explaination” link. Looks Great.

24 Click Input

Holy crap, that is crazy. I wonder if other companies are going to be effected by this persons supposed patent.

25 Shane

Ignoring lawsuit threats? Most people do.

Ignoring an actual lawsuit? Bad move. I have an associate who recently ignored a suit against his company, and then at the eleventh hour he decides he better go fight it. But he hasn’t had much time to prepare. Not fun.

26 Click Input

Who’s been registering all the typos eh?

27 Andrew Johnson

The lesson here is that if you have a very valuable internet business you need to be an accredited domain name registrar.

28 Jonathan Volk

That sucks! I would be pissed. I wonder what will happen to the serps if they get the domain back.

29 Grivon

This is something I’ve always worried about from the start,,, you never REALLY have control over your “internet land” … which must scare away lots of serious serious investors… no?

30 Grivon

Bahaha… if I don’t laugh nobody will answer this one!!

31 Click Input

So just to confirm, they only lost the domain because they are a non-US company, but the domain was hosted with a US company? Gutting…

32 David Lithman

Is this the first time a billion dollar company has just ‘lost’ it’s domain name and had to find something new?

33 ritchie

really strange thing… and it shows the problem of us administration solely controlling the com tld.

34 Alexander Willemsen

So you think it’s fair for someone in let’s say Europe to have to travel to the US to attend a hearing while EVERUTHING is located outside the US?

Right.

35 Derek

That concept could have some implications as far as letting anyone register .us domains, in theory all you’d need to do is register a .com with a US registrar and you’re good to go as far as fulfilling the requirement about ties to the US.

As far as the whole thing goes, what crap!

36 mike

bodog can be hailed into court in the united states (under sup ct standards promulgated in a long line of cases read by first years) and it is astounding that their lawyers did not anticipate this.

37 Gecko Tales

This is nasty, nasty stuff.

38 misterproline

The kind retiree’s name is Mel Molnick. :)

39 corey

once search engines find the same site at the new address this will no longer be an issue. the new owners didn’t put a page up at the domain, so my browser’s default search engine queries the domain name.

40 Mark Hankins

Lawsuits aren’t “automatically” won by the plaintiff if the defendant doesn’t appear and defend. The court considers on its own whether it has subject matter jurisdiction (whether the case is one it *could* hear) and whether it has personal jurisdiction (whether the defendant has properly been haled before the court) … then it also must be convinced that there are statutory or actual damages.

Anyone thinking of *not* responding to a lawsuit had better be lead-pipe certain that one of those two jurisdictional factors is missing, or that damages are nil. And that they have the wherewithal to mount an appeal if the trial judge gets it wrong.

41 Michael

WOW, this is some serious mess, wonder how will it turn out.
Hurts to see so much gambling traffic wasted, while the domain is offline :\

42 Theo

If he emailed his members, he should keep his traffic.
Not much harm done…

43 Paul Bradish

I would think so. If someone is a Bodog member, they won’t mind going to newbodog.com to access their accounts. Still though, this definitely sucks for Bodog.

44 -JB-

Or, perhaps he should join the Witness Protection Program. I would be shaking in my shoes to know I was the guy who interrupted the revenue stream of an organized international gambling business. Not everyone involved in that industry is a saint or willing to only use legal means to fight this.

45 Geckotales

Mark – You are right. I’ve seen lawyers screw with people that don’t understand these sort of situations. We need more legal reform to proect entities from sneaky lawyers and friv lawsuits.

46 chrisblogging.com

Wow…that is unbelievable. I never saw this coming, and actually stay pretty much up to date with the online gambling world.

47 king jacob

Bodog didnt really help their case by not showing up.

48 Modern Worker

Man, we’re in a interesting yet strange era of legalities. The Internet is like a can of worms that exploded onto the scene out of nowhere.

49 Peter

If you read the TOS for most registrars when you register a domain with them you are also agreeing to allow for registrar’s jurisdiction to be used in case you are AWOL.

50 kevin

i can’t believe somebody already ordered knewbodog.com… pretty freaking hilarious.

51 Ian

lol, I’m not pumping that POS stock. In fact, I advise nobody to buy it. Of course, maybe it’ll hit $100 one day and I’ll be a millionaire. Hopefully Internet gambling will be legalized in the US soon.

52 Dan Nedelko

My contact info:

dan.nedelko@gmail.com or dan@honeypotmarketing.com

I don’t solicit contact from my blog. I’m not a one man marketing machine like Shoemoney ;)

Nor do I want to be!

53 Dan Nedelko

This shouldn’t disgust you my friend. Karma is a bitch, trust me I know.

The whole thing doesn’t add up – why would a judge order http://www.calvinayre.com to be pulled also. This is a DNS hijack. Bodog got sued no doubt but these two incidents are hardly related.

54 jim

:)

55 jim

I can’t imagine their lawyers didn’t see this coming…

56 Gary R. Hess

They pretty much say it is legal, but it isn’t. They have all but stopped banks from allowing money to be sent to online gambling sites. You basically have to find a way around it if you want to play.

57 Pam

His email is on his CV which is linked from his website. I found it in 10 seconds :)

58 ferrarislave

wow that sucks, these patents are getting ridiclious.

59 MONEY BLUE BOOK

You may lose if you don’t show!!
To defend your case from a lawsuit, you have to appear in court to contest the plaintiff’s claims. EVEN if you are the defendant and your claim is that the plaintiff does not have personal jurisdiction over you (the right to pull you into a particular court), you generally STILL must appear. You can make a special appearance without waiving your personal jurisdiction in some places, while in other places, your mere appearance may be construed as consent to personal jurisdiction. :)

-Raymond (MONEY BLUE BOOK)

60 Dan Nedelko

Think about this one people. If this is a legal battle and a patent issue.

ANYTHING bodog does at this point would be shut down. http://www.newbodog.com is functional which makes NO SENSE.

I have no doubt that the filing happened and Bodog lost but http://www.newbodog.com would also be shut down.

I have put all the resources I’ve dug up on my blog at http://www.dannedelko.com – filings, rulings, and some digging too.

Enjoy but I don’t believe this is a case of process patent violation. Finally if you’re paying attention here, all the bodog sites are now down:

Fight
Music
TV
Nation
Beat

Good times.

61 Greywolfdk

No its not, The first actually had to change their business name also. The WWE use to be the WWF was sue in california and lost thier name to the World Wildlife Ferderation

62 David

It shows how important patent is… is crazy!

63 dapyx

Haha and that guy had a tatoo with some links, what is he going to do if something similar happens to one of the links that he’s got on his arms?
PS shoemoney.com will last forever because everybody loves shoemoney :)

64 Doug M

It’s a shame to see that this is how alot of people make large sums of money in the U.S. although i believe in obtaining the rights to use what is already in the patent system, a compnay outside the U.S. has little to no reason to search and see if one such patent exsists.

65 dillsmack

Its not about fair or not fair fucktard, it is the LAW.

66 Kris from Florida

They must have put some serious money into those serps..

67 Secure Hosting

Yes, they should have used a non-usa registrar in Canada, Europe etc and also host offshore !!

Regards,
Richard.

68 ccc

The law? What UNITED STATES law? Sorry the website is located in EUROPE.

69 Click Input

And backlinks going to the old Bodog site?

70 Never Pay RRP

With hindsight I am sure the owners of Bodog would have done this.

Did they realistically have any warning this could happen though?

71 Never Pay RRP

This all just seems so bizarre! How could a player the size of Bodog with such sizeable assets to protect not even put in appearance?

Any legal buffs out there know whether Bodog has a right of appeal or is this the end of line?

72 Dan Nedelko

Not as much as you might think my friend. They could have done more.

73 Dave Starr --- ROI Guy

Interesting how many amateur lawyers there are spouting advice. Apparently BoDog listened to some of them istead of seeking competent legal assistance.

Years ago I took real estate law course. The instructor showed us apicture of a large appartment house complex and then showed us how to use the tax records to show that he was the legal owner. Howcome? When he was a college student and lived in that complex, he filed a suit in small claims court for $50 that the apartment owners had withheld, allegedly illegally, from his rental deposit.

The complex owners ignore “the kid”, he won his case by default, obtained a judgment against the owners which they also ignored …. and on it went. pay a competent attorney may well be chickenfeed compared to ignoring the suit because you _think_ the other country’s courts have no jurisdiction. When you do not show up, you prove the other side’s case for them and a default judgment is routine.

74 Dan Nedelko

Unless you’re a lawyer then you also are “spouting advice” – ironic isn’t it?

75 Joeychgo

Its a shame, but they did it to themselves.

76 Paul Bradish

LOL – I was thinking the same exact thing.

77 Theo

Google has already indexed the new website, let’s hope it doesn’t get a duplicate content penalty.

78 jim

If you’re sued and you don’t show up, you automatically lose, so they assumed in that loss nothing could be claimed and they were wrong. They had ample warning, they just received poor advice. It still astounds me that this happened because it’s not like they would’ve skimped out on good legal counsel, they’re a freaking gambling powerhouse after all.

79 jim

Just look up, I found it in one second. :)

80 jim

It’s technically not legal but it’s also an unenforceable rule. If you have a poker game for money, it’s technically illegal and everyone could be arrested, the problem is you can’t enforce a law like that so you go after the next best thing, the money.

What’s funny with the most recent laws, they are almost exact copies of laws they wanted to pass about 7 or 8 years ago with the Internet Gambling Prohibition Act but that was stopped because of the lobbying done by Jack Abramoff. With Abramoff behind bars, the newest laws passed. Interesting huh? It’s all about money…

81 Modern Worker

Just kind of a funky situation all around here it seems like. I don’t think they 100% deserved it, but then again, the intarweb playas do play hardball

82 Derek

As far as why nobody from Bodog showed, from the news:

“It is not clear why Bodog officials did not respond to the allegations. One possibility is they were scared away by the U.S. Department of Justice, which has declared war on Internet gambling.

Through a series of high profile arrests of online gambling executives, the Justice Department has made it clear that online gambling is illegal and anybody operating or facilitating such activities is subject to prosecution.

Since then, Ayre has avoided stepping on American soil, but he continues to return to Vancouver, where Bodog runs a marketing-support business in Vancouver called Riptown Media and a call centre in Burnaby called Triple Crown Customer Service.”

Then again, Ayre may just not be the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to the law:

“In the early 1990s, Ayre got into trouble with the B.C. Securities Commission over his dealings with Bicer Medical Systems, listed on the former Vancouver Stock Exchange. In 1996, he admitted to serious offences in connection with that company and agreed to a 20-year ban from the B.C. securities market.”

83 IncomeJourney

A blogger got hit with an $11 Million lawsuit, and decided not to show up in court and had a default judgment placed against her for the full $11 mil. If you don’t show up in court, you loose.

84 bunni

The law? What UNITED STATES law? Sorry the website is located in EUROPE.

And yet, bodog.com is down.

85 Joeychgo

I would imagine they wouldnt since the old site is now offline.

86 Chris

What happens in the case of you, and your business, operating entirely outside the US in every regard? Sure, you might be bound to the judgment under US law, but does that really have any effect on your outside the US?

87 STUART Hannig

I love the design for the site. Grade A

88 king jacob

maybe they did anticipate it and just decided that it would be good press to have your domain yanked from you

89 king jacob

Thats interesting, you arent allowed internet casinos in the US but you can sue out of country internet casinos because you own the patent in the us to “internet casions”

90 king jacob

Ahh poor abramoff, it sucks to be a scapegoat.

91 king jacob

Its not the Law,bodog just didnt show up to court, if he did and brought good enough lawyers he would have won.

92 king jacob

what blogger was this?

93 Matt W

This judgement says more about the US legal system than it does Bodog.

94 Dan

Jeremy if you want an indepth analysis of Calvin Ayre and Bodog Entertainment check it out at Globe and Mail, Report on Business Magazine at: http://www.reportonbusiness.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20070426.rmayre0427/BNStory/specialROBmagazine/home

95 The Dino

Can people just like this let something disapear?

96 Derek

Good in-depth article, the Globe sure does that kind of thing well.

97 Joeychgo

WHy????

98 Chris Guthrie

I wonder if they’re just relying on other people to spread the word about the newbodog.com website or what.

99 stupid 3gp

they must have lost millions and alot of trust … bad happens

100 ***V***

Patents have to be the biggest joke around. I need to make some up for myself, then in 20 years open a suit on someone for taking my patent.

V

101 Ken Savage

when is my partpoker going to go down. I’ve seen a company directory in a office building in the Caymen Islands and I swear most of these party poker sites had offices there.

102 Michael Fultz

What good is a judgement if you can’t get any money?

103 Brock

Hi admin! I really love your blog. When you have a while please check mine. It’s about casinos

104 Concetta

Howdy there. I like your www! When you have some time please check mine! It’s about pokern

105 blackjack

Hey, I think your website might be having browser compatibility
issues. When I look at your blog site in Chrome, it
looks fine but when opening in Internet Explorer, it has some overlapping.
I just wanted to give you a quick heads up!
Other then that, excellent blog!

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