When you are playing online poker you are not worried about the emotional state of your opponents. To win here it is enough to learn the rules of poker and strategy basics. But if you want to be a great live poker player all that is required but insufficient.
Playing face to face with other players at the table you must get acquainted with poker etiquette. Most beginners are eagerly looking forward to winning money, without paying too much attention to the moral side of this process. Meanwhile, mutual respect is crucial in poker, and the game has its own system of guidelines of what you should and shouldn’t do.
One of the don’ts is asking to see another player’s losing hand. Of course, you may ask to see any hand called on the river. If you do so, it gives you an opportunity to receive much information concerning the other players’ moves. But think well, whether this reason is strong enough to go astray.
Anyway, keep in mind that if you want to see what the other players are playing and decide to ask to see a player’s hand, it will look as if you were accusing them of cheating. Besides, a person forced to show he/her losing hand will feel disrespected even more as this demonstration reveals any mistakes he/she may have made.
There is another situation that should be mentioned when we are talking about poker etiquette. It refers to the moment in a tourney or cash game when you knock a player out. When the player is leaving you may want to show your friendliness and to shake his hand in witness of that. But it is better not to do that unless the player is willing himself to shake your hand. Just try to imagine that you are in his place. If you are knocked out you are unlikely to feel well about the situation, at least not like giving smiles and shaking hands.
Most people have no desire to shake someone’s hand at that moment. Don’t make them do something they don’t want to.
If you win a hand, you should not apologize. Such politeness will not help but just add fuel to the fire. Every player has come to the table with the same purpose to win someone’s money. None of them will believe that you are sorry when taking their money. No one wants to be lied to. Just say “nice hand” and move on.
Never ever answer the questions put by a player and addressed to another player. Asking such questions as “How many chips do you have left in your stack?” players mostly do not seem to want to know the answer. This serves for a certain plan, which you may mess up answering instead of the player. Thus, some experienced players usually ask about such things in order to try and pick up tells.