Top Online Poker Tells
March 14, 2009
Although not as obvious as live poker games, it is possible to distinguish online poker tells. For those who don’t know, a quick definition of a poker tell would be an action made a person that can give off the relative strength about the hand they are holding. For example, if you notice that the guy across from you in a live game takes a look down at his hand and goes to make a bet and starts shaking uncontrollably, then it may be safe to say that he has a strong hand. And while you’re probably thinking that no “tell” would be that obvious, I have to be honest in telling you that that was me when I first started playing live.
To better prepare you for playing online, let’s take a look at a few examples and explain what they may or may not mean. NOTE: It is important to tell you that if any of these tells seem “obvious” and you’re not playing with fish….tread lightly. It could be a good player trying to send misleading information.
- “Good is Bad & Bad is Good” Most new players tend to play this way by default not wanting to display what they may think as obvious.
- Using the “Auto” feature: If you happen to notice that a player is using the “auto raise” button, you can probably be assured that he is fearless therefore holds something of value. The opposite could be said if they “auto call” or “auto check” as this can show lack of interest in the hand.
- Betting into you on 4th St. when an uncoordinated card shows up. May be trying to disguise strength from the hitting the flop.
- At a ring game a player decides to not wait for the Big Blind to come around. Can show impatience or loose tendencies.
- Look in your chat box. If a player normally seems shy, then all of a sudden starts talking…. It could mean he is comfortable, potentially holding a good hand.
Now while these are the most common “tells,” they are by no means set in stone. A good player could be mixing his game up on you or a bad player is getting better. The best thing to do is pay attention and look for when they show their cards at showdown. Try to put 2 and 2 together. Here is a couple things you can do to ready yourself:
- Take notes on players. While this may seem like a difficult task, start with the players who play the most. Look for betting patterns, count how long they take to make a decision, and look to see if they go on tilt easily. This can all be vital information. The majority of online poker sites now have this function already installed to make your life a lot easier when doing this.
- Prevent giving away information. Take the same amount of time to make a decision and don’t use the “auto” features
- Try to stay at the same table(s) for a while to gather info. The longer you stay the more apparent the patterns will become.
To put things into perspective, looking for online tells can seem like a daunting task. But it should all be apart of what you are doing at the table anyway, and that’s paying attention. If you follow a few of these steps you should be able to identify some obvious tells and either save some money or make it in the process.
Other General Poker Strategy Articles
- Common Mistakes Made with Pocket Aces
- Dealing With Bad Beats
- Using Poker Tools To Your Advantage
- When and When Not To Slow Play
- Poker Odds and Outs
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