PokerStars Prevails in Poker Rules Challenge Mike Heuer, CDC Gaming Reports · January 25, 2017 at 3:59 pm Well-noted poker professional Marcel Luske has initially lost his copyright complaint against PokerStars over claimed use of his International Rules of Poker. Clark County District Judge Nancy Allf on Monday granted PokerStars’ motion to dismiss Luske’s complaint, but gave Luske until March 7 to file an amended complaint that addresses several deficiencies. Allf said if Luske files an amended complaint, he must indicate whether or not he had an exclusive agreement with defendants and address issues regarding branding and logo use by PokerStars. Those issues include when and where PokerStars used the logo or branding and whether anyone else is licensed to use them. Luske also must specify whether the poker rules were copyrighted and for how long, the terms of contracts, and whether there were performance and consideration to address deficiencies with his ongoing or prospective economic reliance claim. In his complaint filed in August 2016, Luske said he copyrighted the International Rules of Poker in 2008, and became PokerStar’s featured professional player from May 2009 until his firing in August 2014. Luske said he created the International Rules of Poker to wrest control of the game from casino operators, who previously used rules created by the Tournament Director Association. Those rules were often massaged to benefit tournament organizers at the detriment of players. The Bellagio in Las Vegas was the first major casino to adopt the new International Rules, and many others soon followed. He said PokerStars told him it wanted to use his International Rules of Poker and agreed to pay an annual license fee of $25,000. In the end, according to Luske, PokerStars strung him along long enough to steal the rules to create its PSLive rules. Luske said another firm offered to buy his poker rules in 2013, but he declined due to PokerStars controlling about 70 percent of the online poker market at the time. He sued on behalf of himself and co-plaintiffs Federal International de Poker Association, which Luske founded in 2007, and Global Poker Support International, which he founded in 2009. In a filing supporting its motion to dismiss, PokerStars said Luske “cannot show a copyright interest in the content of poker rules or meet the applicable writing requirement under the Copyright Act,” so he chose to sue in Clark County. “Unable to clear the federal bar to relief, Luske has attempted to shoehorn the alleged facts into state-law claims,” PokerStars argued. Luske sought damages from PokerStars for fraud, interference with prospective economic advantage. breach of contract and bad faith. PokerStars claims Luske did not state material terms of a contract for his poker rules, is time-barred from claiming interference with a prospective economic advantage because he declined an offer for his poker rules in 2013, and has not shown any basis for fraud. Also named as defendants are Amaya Services, Rational Entertainment Enterprises, and Rational Group dba PokerStars dba PSLive. Luske lives in Holland, has won more than $4.4 million over his professional career and finished 10th in the 2004 World Series of Poker, winning $373,000. Luske is represented by Las Vegas attorney Kerry J. Doyle, who was not immediately available by telephone Wednesday morning. PokerStars is represented by attorney Mark Ferrario of Greenberg Traurig.