The Golden Rules of Etiquette for Online Poker

Some poker players believe that just because they're sitting at a computer rather than a casino table, they have the right to do whatever they want, and act however they like. In fact, this is simply not the case, and there are various considerations that poker players should be taking into account before they start to play a game online.

Rule 1: Don't talk about a Hand you're not involved in

You should never try to give another player advice, or talk about their hands. If you're in the middle of a game and decide to go all in, how would you feel if someone who wasn't playing advised the other player to fold? Of course, you shouldn't confuse this with using table talk in an attempt to influence a decision. If you're all-in and another player is deciding which step to take next, you can speak to them and attempt to influence their decision. This is known as leveling.

Rule 2: Do not be Abusive or Aggressive in Chat

Most online poker tables will have a chat box where players can comment or speak to one another. Being abusive or berating another player is not a good thing for anyone. It doesn't matter how frustrated you get, being aggressive in chat could cause another player to quit the table or stop playing completely. You might even put yourself into such a poor frame of mind that you lose track of your own hand. Keep your emotions in check, and stay polite.

Rule 3: Keep Up with the Game

Whenever possible, make sure that you're not taking an incredibly long time to act on your poker hand. Sometimes making a decision can be difficult, and it's worth taking your time on important post-flop decisions, but try not to be excessive when it comes to making basic choices. Slowing down the game is a bad thing for everyone at the table, and a slow game could be enough to frustrate a losing player and cause them to quit.

Rule 4: Don't give information about the hand you folded

Under no circumstances should you be talking about your hand in the game chat while the other players are still active. Only once the hand has officially been completed should you start talking about your hand, as otherwise, doing so could influence the way the hand plays out, meaning that it is unfair to the people who are still involved in the game.