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Poker Night in America Called Out for Fish Shaming

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Poker Night in America Called Out for Fish Shaming

Professional poker player Jake Cody called Poker Night in America on Twitter for its inappropriate commentary during a recent event. Cody accused a commentator of the show of fish shaming by ridiculing a recreational player at the final table.

The tournament took place in 2017, but PNIA recently released a YouTube video of the action, with a title that deepens the insult, “Embarrassing Play by Amateur at Final Table.” The player in question was Sebastien Labbe.

During the video, the commentator brings up Labbe’s stats on the Hendon Mob database to point out that he only had $374 in poker earnings at the time. When Labbe began to struggle at the table, the commentator said he was “wasting our time” and that he expected the inexperienced player to fold.

Cody tweeted a picture of his computer screen watching the video. He called the video’s commentary “unnecessary and disgusting.” Cody continued to call out of PNIA for bullying recreational players by pointing out other videos with rude commentary. A video entitled “Rich Fish invited to Ladies Night” made his list.

PNIA’s attempt to shame beginners for entertainment backfired big with the Poker Twitter community. A slew of fellow poker players commented their disapproval of the videos and the commentary within them. The issue became so big, PNIA issued a response.

The show offered to buy Cody a drink next time it is in town. It claimed its “tongue in cheek” tone did not come through in the videos, but Twitter was not buying it. Followers of the thread immediately told PNIA its apology was the real embarrassment.


Hailing from Wisconsin but arriving in Las Vegas in 1995, I'm better known at various US online poker rooms under the pen name "OreoBob" and "SoyFlush". I'm an avid poker player and editor-at-large who has contributed as a freelance writer for diverse national and international iGaming publications since 2004.

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July 2020