Good Poker Etiquette

Poker is a social game because it involves several players at one table where talking and chatting have become the usual fare. With so much social interaction going on, there is bound to be unwanted behavior from people who are not educated on poker etiquette. If you want to continue playing poker, whether in real life or online, you must first brush up on your poker table manners. It is not enough to learn just the basic poker strategies.

A cardinal sin in poker is to make comments about another player's hand, especially if you've folded out already. There are a few situations when it's okay to talk about a hand, like in cases of dispute, but in serious play it is an absolute no-no. Friendly talk might be tolerable especially if the players know each other very well, but don't overdo it in tournaments or casino games where you don't know whom you're playing against.

Another serious breach of poker etiquette is to act out of turn, which means folding, calling, raising or checking before your turn to act. If it's an honest mistake, be sure to apologize to everyone at the table. When a player acts out of turn, he not only disrupts the decision-making process of the player whose turn it is to act, but also gives undue advantage to other players.

Acting out of turn is a grave mistake happening usually in land-based poker rooms. online poker rooms have virtually eliminated this mistake since online poker software now prevents a player from acting out of turn. With online poker software, you can still act before your turn, but your action will be reserved for your turn to act. Generally, it is not advisable to use this feature if you want to learn about player strategies and tactics.

Don't reveal your hand to other players at all costs. It might be tempting for a player to brag about his excellent hand, but revealing your cards is a classic example of bad manners. If you just have to reveal your hand for some reason, you have to reveal it to everyone at the table and not just to one or two players.

Don't the dealer for a bad hand or the outcome of a game. Most dealers have no control over what and how the cards are dealt. Sure, there might be rare cases of dishonest and corrupt dealers, but most of them are generally honest. In any case, you can always report suspicious behavior to the proper authorities.

If you're playing online, always keep in mind that online games involve real people with real feelings and emotions. It's so easy to translate bad behavior to the realm of the Internet. The chat feature is intended to make your poker experience a little more realistic and not as a venue for picking fights, trash talk and other verbal abuse.

Brush up on your poker table manners and you will be on your way to success in poker.