Official Poker Rules

In an official poker game, the dealer places an appropriate amount of chips on the table for the start of the event. Players are not allowed to change seats once play begins. Each paid entrant will be assigned a starting chip amount. Each player will also be dealt an ante and blinds, and the table will be broken in predetermined order.

The poker rules are maintained by the professional Tournament Directors Association, or TDA. It was formed in 2001 by poker players David Lamb, Linda Johnson, and Matt Savage, and now has over 2,500 members in more than 63 countries. Members of the organization include the managers of major live poker rooms, poker circuits, and independent tournaments. The WSOP’s Tournament Director, Jack Effel, also serves as a member of the association.

Although there are many official poker rules, some are optional, and others are governed by etiquette in general. Poker etiquette aims to prevent players from making common poker errors, as well as to enhance the atmosphere at the table. A common example of cheating is angle shooting, which is considered unethical. However, it can be used in a variety of ways, and has become a gray area in the game.

Another common mistake in poker is making a player reveal his or her holdings during the game. While this is not against the official poker rules, it is considered disrespectful to other players.