A live or an online poker room is always a bustling environment. Poker tables are sprinkled with characters that come with their own oddities. Some behaviors are acceptable, some really test your patience, some amplified by your pet peeves and some are just not tolerated on the live or online poker felts.
As a poker player, it’s good to be aware of these behaviours that are frowned upon. After all, you wouldn’t want to play poker online at a table full of angry poker players ruining your gaming experience. Here, we are certainly not addressing any intentional behaviour that players choose to deploy to send their opponents on tilt.
Giving players the benefit of the doubt, we’d like to refer to the unintentional behavioral aspect in live poker as well as online poker games– either not understanding or not caring that their behaviour is making the experience for others less than pleasant. Let’s take a look at these anti-social poker behaviours that are a big NO and if you are at the receiving end of it,
Few tips on how to deal with it and not let it affect your game.
If you played poker online or live a few times, you’ve probably already encountered this guy. The most common anti-social behaviour among poker players is indecisiveness. While we understand poker is a higher pressure game, it doesn’t explain players mulling over evident hands with the least consequential actions. On the other hand, taking time on a ‘big decision or a close call’ is understandably accepted on the felts when you play poker online.
What’s frowned upon is dilly-dallying and spending over a minute deciding whether to fold to a Rs.500 raise pre-flop. If you’ve got your starting hand range right, there’s not much to think about and you are expected to make faster decisions.
Our solution to deal with Mr. Indecisive:
- If you play poker online, Mr. Indecisive’s time bank will have you covered. Online poker has a set time to react per hand if a player chooses to take longer, the same time is taken from their timebank. The timebank is a reserve of time that poker players can use when they need a few additional seconds to make a decision when they play poker online. Let’s say Mr. Indecisive is likely to run out of his/her timebank if he/she is tanking every other hand.
- When it comes to a live poker game, let’s just say keeping to the clock is an unspoken etiquette. Poker players also have the option to ‘call the clock’ on a player who takes his own time and stall the game. However, ‘calling the clock’ is also a frowned upon poker social behaviour. Poker players are expected to behave and conduct themselves in a manner fit for the game.
- Considering you’re stuck in a similar situation, another option is to distract yourself and not let Mr. Indecisive’s tanking affect your game. Choose something else to focus on while these kinds of players delay your online poker game. You could take some mental notes on his/her game style or put them on a hand range and analyze why the decision could possibly take so long.
A live poker or an online poker room doesn’t need to have the hush of a library, but neither does it require the vocal cords of Mr. Chatterbox. Indulging in friendly banter is not going to get you penalized on an online poker table but incessant chatter will. While online poker is a social game, Mr. Chatterbox, we think you are in dire need of some human company in your non-poker life. We suggest you leave the chatter for off the felts.
Our solution to deal with Mr. Chatterbox:
These anti-social poker characters are probably the easiest to deal with. Introducing the power of mute!
- If you are playing an online poker game and the chat is filled with Mr. Chatterboxe’s rant, mute your conversation!
- On a live table and Mr. Chatterbox needs to come to a screeching halt? We trust you know why headphones are such a vital poker accessory. Plugin your buds and cancel out all that chatter. Alternatively, you could choose to laugh it off with a snide remark like ‘ You sure do talk a lot,’ the smart ones should get it and have them shut for a while.
Suppose you are even an ounce serious about real money online poker games. In that case, you probably know this anti-social poker player, Mr. Slow Roller. Mr. Slow Roller wagers, you call turning over your hand, and then he/she takes a long pause knowingly well that he/she has the superior hand. Well, that’s Mr. Slow Roller, an anti-social poker personality that probably gets the most brick back.
Slow Rolling is probably the least tolerated anti-social poker behaviour and the most impactful when it comes to sending the receiving player into a tilt.
Our solution to deal with Mr. Slow Roller:
- Take a break for the next few hands that come your way until you are back in your optimal mindset to play smart online poker.
- Make a note on this opponent so that in the future, you are better prepared and resilient towards this behaviour
NOT IN THE GAME
Online poker games require you to pay constant attention to what’s going on at the table. If you are an amateur grappling with the pace of an online poker game, this one’s not for you. However, a couple of hands down and you should be getting this right. Poker players are expected to know what’s going and are expected and not be reminded of when it’s their turn to act.
Mr. Not in the game is a real irritant in a live poker game because it further slows down the pace of the game. ” It’s on you ” ” That’s x to call” are things you probably don’t want to hear often on the table and should warn you that you are not engaged in the game.
Our solution to deal with Mr. Not in the game:
- Well, if you’re playing poker online, you are spared of Mr. Not in the game. He/she is bound to get timed out or will eventually be sitting out of your table.
- On the live felts, this anti-social behaviour could be hard to correct. However, you should let the dealer ensure the game is moving and instead spend that extra time getting your decision right.
We are probably embarrassed to say that inferior hygiene ranks at the top of anti-social poker behaviour. Considering poker players are not minors, you’d assume basic sanitation is a given. However, there are Mr. Slobs peppered in every live poker game. Mr. Slobs are characterized by their stale pheromones, making them generally slovenly, smelly, and unkempt. Unfortunately, your bad beats stink less with these guys around!
Our solution to deal with Mr. Slob:
- If you are on a live poker table and would like to take on the onus of breaking this to Mr. Slob, we are all with you.
- However, knowing their unwillingness to do anything about it, we recommend you have a private chat with the tournament director and have your seat changed.
Must Read: The Anatomy of a Poker Bluff
You probably lost a pot, and you can hear:
” How did you call that, bro.”
“OMG, I thought you’d be playing me on a stronger hand.”
” What did you put me on, bro.”
These are the words of another anti-social poker behaviour, gloating. Mr. Showboat is likely to not just bask in the glory of his victory, but equally rub-in the loss. Save the boasting for after the poker game or with your buddies off the table Mr.Showboat!
Our solution to deal with Mr. Showboat:
- Ignore him/her.
- If they continue to taunt you, grow a thicker skin and don’t let this post mortem banter affect you.
- Can’t tolerate it? Leave the table.
” Man, sick beat on the river.”
” Those pocket aces never do me good.”
“ What a fish! “
” The AC temperature is too high.”
“ Don’t you think they could have better lighting in a poker room?”
Mr. Wet Blanket, no one really cares, you have to suck it up like the rest. No poker player want to hear an incessant rant on your bad beats and otherworldly issues during a serious online poker game.
Our solution to deal with Mr. Wet Blanket:
- Tune out or mute your chat!
- Remember those headphones we were talking about? Guess they come in handy for most anti-social poker behaviour.
This anti-social poker personality needs no introduction. Mr. Free Advisor, players, are not waiting on the table for your tutelage. They’d probably join an online poker course or a stable if they did! Keep your freebies to yourself, if you think you are that qualified, we suggest setting up a poker school of your own, the poker felts are no place for lessons!
Our solution to deal with Mr. Advisor:
- Tune out. Bring those headphones back in!
Also Read : Ergonomics For Better Poker Economics
We understand that long hours do get poker players hungry, and it’s a requestable ask to get food to your poker table. But here’s the flip side to that, Mr. Savage has:
- Ordered possibly the greasiest messy dish on the planet
- A futile attempt with the cutlery and they’ve switched to using their hands
- Takes larger than life bites
- Chomps louder than the mediocre ambient music
- Have a lot more to say with their mouth’s full.
- The topping: some projectile food, a nasty burp to sum up the meal and chips with no trouble sliding on the felts, thanks to its greasing.
Mr. Savage, this is unpleasant for any human being, leave alone a poker player. If you are guilty of this anti-social behaviour on the felts, you are probably off the felts. This is perhaps one of the anti-social poker behaviours that are frowned upon off the felts too! Certainly worth fixing this one for both life and livelihood!
Our solution to deal with Mr. Savage:
- Though lousy table manners are witnessed during a live poker game, you might even face the same behaviour when you play poker online with your buddies.
- Society and mankind have evolved enough for you to call Mr. Savage out. This anti-social behaviour requires to be checked when it’s out of hand but go kind with your words, though. No one wants to be humiliated or embarrassed, and embarrassing a guest on the table is considered a more significant social error. We suggest you have a word with the player in person after the meal or during the break.
A game of poker is like a melting pot of characters. You find players with all kinds of education and cultural backgrounds. Therefore, it’s not just enough to skill up in terms of strategy, but also skill up in poker behaviour. Poker Behaviour is an unwritten rule of poker that came into play to ensure the game is enjoyed by everyone.
For all those at the receiving end, we hope this makes you more resilient and lesser affected!
Think you are one of them? Why take away the joy of the game with these anti-social poker behaviour?
Don’t be ‘that guy.’