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Old 11-19-2004, 11:23 PM
lorinda lorinda is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: England
Posts: 6,868
Default FAQ for the Internet Gambling forum

Sorry, guys. You know I love you. Please remember that Gildwulf made me do it.

Rule 22: Anyone posting in an unlocked Zoo sticky will be banned.

[img]/images/graemlins/tongue.gif[/img] [img]/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]


Mat Sklansky

No Affiliate/Rakeback Zone

As from November 20th 2004, all threads revolving around affiliate programs will be deleted when I become aware of their existence. (This includes rakeback discussions.) Need further explanation? Those wishing to sign up under others can peruse the classified ads. If you publicly announce your affiliate status, you will be banned. (Don't worry. Second chances will be given freely to those who claim they were not aware of this policy.)

Please continue with the barrage of notifications.


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<font color="red"> About this forum and 2+2 </font>

What is the zoo?

The zoo is this (The Internet) forum within 2+2

It was christened by DavidRoss in this old post a long time ago.

The posters here, typically, liked the name and so it stuck.
As a general rule the posters here are a helpful crowd, but don't suffer fools (Like the ones that can't read a FAQ) gladly.

Am I in the right forum.

This forum is for Internet GAMBLING.
If you have a question regarding the operation or honesty of any poker site OR any other kind of online casino, then you are in the right place.
It is also the right place to discuss bonuses, new hardware, new sites, software that might help whilst playing online and anything else that seems relevant.

Many of the posters here do not go to the other forums on 2+2, and hence from time to time an off topic thread will pop up on here.

This is NOT the right place for strategy discussions.
There is a nice list of other 2+2 forums on the left hand side of your screen. Many excellent players live in those forums and will usually help you out if you ask them nicely.

How do I use the search function?

The vast majority of things you will want to ask as a new poster have been asked many many times before.
Because of this, it is possible that your question will be ignored, answered unsatisfactorily, or, in the worst cases, laughed at.

The search function is more useful than it first appears. See relevant links at the bottom of this post. Also, here are some past discussions on how to get the most from it:

Some hints

Some more

If you are looking for something older, the archives can be found here

What is flat/threaded mode and collapsed/expanded mode

Flat mode allows you to see all the posts in a thread in the order in which they were posted.

Threaded mode allows you to see a list of all the posts in a thread and shows who replied to who more clearly.

Collapsed mode lists the threads by the name of the first post only, whilst Expanded mode lists every post.

<font color="red"> I'm new to online poker, what site should I play? </font>

The best thing to do is to post to this forum and state what you are actually looking for in a site.
State limits, game types, willingness to wait for a better game and anything else you consider relevant.

Someone will usually reply quickly.

What are the largest poker sites?

PartyPoker and PokerStars are the two largest poker rooms by a wide margin, followed by FullTiltPoker and the Ongame network. Rankings of the top poker sites according to size can be found at and For an extensive list of poker sites, networks and skins, take a look at the Poker Site &amp; Network Directory or check PokerSiteScout or PokerPulse.

Prime Time

There is no exact definition for this, but it refers to the time of night where there are many more players online. For the sites with a largely American player base, this is typically around 7pm to 1am Eastern. The actual peak is typically around 11pm ET.

European-focused sites, such as the Ongame, CryptoLogic and Microgaming network sites, tend to peak around 5 pm ET.

<font color="red"> Safety of online play </font>

Do the sites pay up?

In the overwhelming number of cases, the sites will pay you your money with absolutely no difficulty.
Occasionally there will be some small problem, particuarly with smaller sites, that is usually solved by faxing some ID or similar.
Also, it is not unknown for a site to go bust, the smaller and newer the site, the larger the risk.

Below is a link to read about MS Sunshine's difficulties at the old Dutch Boyd site - Pokerspot.

MS Sunshine and Pokerspot

Here is a thread about someone having their money kept because the site said they were cheating.

Taxidriver vs ACR

So what is to keep sites from just keeping my money?

If this should occur, the only recourse you have would be the legal system of the country where the site is based.

If a site keeps your money, it is a good bet that you have lost your money.

Always do a little research before playing, if unsure, the general rule is "The bigger the room, the safer your money"

Is there regulation?

Many of the sites are regulated and licensed by the Kahnawake Gaming Commission.

They are far from ideal regulators.

KGC post by lorinda

What is to stop two people from playing in the same room or communicating via MSN messenger to collude?

Nothing can stop them from doing this.

However many sites have built in security features that are supposed to detect it.
They are able to tell how often you play against other people at your table, how often you fold hands they consider big (I believe at paradise folding AQ or bigger preflop raises flags to be looked at. This does not mean you will get suspended for folding such hands, it just means that they will look for patterns when you do it)

If in doubt however, the best thing to do is to email customer support with the problem hands, the better sites can check how often those two players play on the same table, and can review all their hands played.

Refunds have been known to come of this even without emailing to ask, but if you don't email, your chances of them finding it are reduced.
There are only so many things that even the best of sites can check out without being pointed in the right direction.

Stunnor gets a rebate.

<font color="red"> Are the games rigged against me in any way? </font>

How does an online site shuffle the cards?

This is how Paradise claim to shuffle their cards and how the RNG works.
This is standard amongst the major sites.

Paradise shuffle

and just to compare.

Pokerstars shuffle and integrity

I get too many good hands, is it just short term?

The only way to tell for sure is to log them all.

Thwang99 did exactly that in this thread.

Many people have since done the same with the popularity of Pokertracker and similar tracking programs.
(See further down for more details.)
The results always seem to imply that all is well at the major sites.

I heard that players at one of the sites were cheated because the random number generator there was not good enough, is this true?

Yes, it was Planet Poker.

Here is what happened.

Team cheats Planet Poker.

Note, this was a long time ago and things have come along since then.

Do the sites "juice" flops to generate action?

This is a matter of great debate on this forum, often the threads with huge numbers of replies are discussing precisely this.

Jim Easton's 230k flops data

There are slightly less Aces than other cards, because when a pot gets to the river, there are slightly more aces in people's hands.

Do people using playing aids such as bots or math packages lower my win rate?

In general people who need a program to count their outs for them are poor players.

Bots are still a long way from being good poker players, and although it is a worry that they can play 24/7 and possibly have a small edge of the fish, any program playing 24/7 will be spotted very quickly by most sites.

Which sites spot such things the most quickly?

Stars and Paradise have the best behind the scenes detection software, without a doubt.

<font color="red"> Affiliates of sites </font>

What is an affiliate?

An affiliate is someone who gets payment for introducing you to a poker site.
Sometimes this payment is in the form of a one-off sum, but often it is a direct percentage of the rake paid by the player the introduce.
Some people will make all manner of nice offers to get you to sign up as their player (For you to have them as your affiliate is the common phrasing of this).
Many players get a deal with the affiliate to get their rake back (Often worded as simply "rakeback").
Many of these deals are against the Terms and Conditions of the site where the player is playing.
All discussion by affiliates, or players looking for an affiliate on this board is now banned.

The reasons for this are twofold.

Firstly this is a commercial site that sells advertising space. Advertising yourself as an affiliate for free detracts from the income of 2+2.
Secondly, there are hundreds of people on this forum who are affiliates, if they all engaged in a public bidding war the place would just be full of spam and useless as an informative forum.

What should I do if I see somebody post details of their affiliate offer(s) on the forum (or spamming the board in general)?

Firstly, do not reply to the post, as this only bumps the post to the top of the forum, which is exactly what the affiliate (spammer) wants.

Secondly, notify the moderator immediately. This can be done by clicking the right hand button of the three at the bottom of the post in question.
Prompt notification assists the moderator in quickly removing the offending thread. Also, never assume somebody else has notified the moderator - double checking does no harm what so ever.

How do I get an account at a Party skin if I already have a Party account?

They don't want you to do this, please bear that in mind when reading the following discussion.

Some discussion on opening an account at Empire

<font color="red"> Bonuses </font>

Many players here chase bonus money, and go from site to site getting as much of this money as they can.
A couple of common questions.

When I deposit money for a deposit bonus, can I then withdraw money from before I clear the bonus?

Yes you can on Stars, Paradise, Party (and skins), UB, Absolute, Crypto skins, PokerRoom.

On Stars you may not withdraw money BEFORE depositing for the bonus during the bonus period.

Which sites have a bonus right now?

That is one of the things that is talked about a lot on this forum.
Have a look through some recent posts, if there is no discussion about a current bonus, it's a good bet that there isn't one.

<font color="red"> Professional Players. </font>

Are there really pro poker players online?

You're in the right place. Not only are there many pro players online, but many of them post on the 2+2 forums.

What limits do I need to play to be a pro?

Many players can make a decent wage from playing several 3/6 tables and combining it with bonus money.

Do I need to pay tax on my winnings?

The answer is yes if you are in America.

The question of how much and how has been asked many times here, but you will need to use the search function to find the threads concerned because of the possibility of the laws changing and hence making any link in this FAQ potentially damaging.

Should I quit my job and become a poker pro?

Usually if you have to ask this question, the answer is no.

There are some excellent posts in the following thread.

Should I go pro?

Why do people play more than one table at once?

In simple terms, the more hands a winning player can play, the more he will win.
Some people find it difficult at first to concentrate on more than one table at once and beginners should worry about getting their game up to a high standard rather than trying to beat several games at once.

Playing more tables will often lower your win rate per table and it is wise for the individual player to keep records to make sure they are winning more per hour (not per table) when they move to more tables.

Playing more hands at the same win rate will not alter your bankroll requirements, however a lower win rate will expose you to larger potential downsides.

<font color="red"> Software. </font>

I have Pokertracker, but I cannot interpret the data very well.

Let MS Sunshine interpret it for you in this post

or BisonBison in this one.

How to use PokerTracker by Pokey.

Note that for specific problems, Pokertracker has a forum at their own website.

How do I set up my computer to play more than one game without overlapping?

You need to increase the screen resolution. To do this on a PC:

1) Right (Alternate) click on the desktop and select properties.
2) Select the settings tab.
3) Drag the indicator below the words “Screen resolution” to the right.
4) Hit OK, then, Yes to the “Do you want to keep this resolution” question dialog.

To play four non overlapping games at once you need to set the screen resolution to 1600x1200, (Some sites have mini screens which will allow you to play four non overlapping games on smaller screens).

Both graphic cards and monitors have a fixed set of screen resolutions that they can support. The values in the “Display Properties/Screen resolution” display is the intersection of these two sets. So for instance if 1600x1200 is not an available option you will need either a new monitor or graphics card.

How do I get to use more than one monitor on my PC?

Its graphic cards determine the number of monitors that a PC can support. Most graphic cards will support only one monitor, however you can get graphic cards that support two or even four monitors.

To use two monitors you can either add a new extra graphic card, or exchange your existing card, for a dual monitor card.

You need to be aware that different graphic cards can fit inside your computer in different ways. For example the AGP, PCI or PCI express slot. It is easy to get buy a graphic card that wont fit in your computer, so if unsure seek professional advice.

By adding extra graphic cards in the above fashion you can attach up to an operating system determined limit of around ten monitors.

Extra information about using more than one monitor can be found on this site.

It is also possible for two graphic cards to be incompatible. Big clue would be the instructions in one of them saying please remove or disable all other graphic cards.

By adding extra graphic cards in the above fashion you can attach up to an operating system determined limit of around ten monitors.

My eyes hurt from playing so much poker, what can I do to ease eyestrain?

Turn the refresh rate on your monitor to the highest setting it will support (alternate click desktop, select properties, go to settings tab, click advanced button, click monitor tab and there will be a drop down box under refresh frequency where you should select the highest possible rate).

WARNING: Be sure that you are selecting a refresh rate that is supported by your monitor, selecting one that is too high can PERMANENTLY DAMANGE YOUR MONITOR.

Other ways to help with eyestrain:
- Frequently look away from your monitor and focus on a distant object
- Make sure there is plenty of ambient lighting in your room and make sure the lighting is properly positioned to avoid glare on your screen.

I really dislike the party background is there any way to change it?

Yes, the images for party poker are stored on your hard drive in the PARTYGAMING/PARTYPOKER/IMAGES directory. You can edit the images in that folder and as long as they are saved using the same file name they will work. Make sure you make backup copies of your files because updates to the software will occasionally overwrite your images.

My wrist hurts, what can I change?

There are constant improvements in the type of mouse you can use.
A quick search will find the latest threads on this.

Be sure you are not resting your arm over the edge of a table or something similar.

<font color="red"> Some common phrases. </font>

The zoo

Already in the FAQ! It's this forum.


Many sites have more than one entrance into the same poker room.
For example Party Poker is the largest site on the net at the time of writing, but Empire Poker leads to the same games.
Empire Poker is called a <font color="blue"> skin </font> of Party Poker.


The rake is the money that a poker site takes out of each pot so they can make a profit.
You should always check the website of the site you are intending to play to find out what rake you will be paying.
You can also search for rake comparison charts on this forum which are updated from time to time.


The KOTZ is the King of the Zoo tournament on one of the poker sites which is for regulars on this forum.

The password is obtained by finding the current organiser and asking him to add you to the mailing list.
You will usually need to have made at least 25 posts before being considered, but all are welcome.

There is also a website with the latest Kotz news and results.


STT = Single Table Tournament (Often called SNG for Sit 'n' Go)

MTT = Multi Table Tournament

Bonus Whoring

Slang for the act of finding a bonus, clearing it, and then leaving the site.

Clearing a bonus

Most bonuses have rules.
A bonus is said to be cleared when all the terms and conditions for that bonus are met and the bonus money is released into your account.

Pattern Mapping

There is no such thing as Pattern Mapping.

Once upon a time there was This thread that went a little out of control.

It became a standing joke in these forums, although some people still believe it to be true.
There was no intentional hoax, things just happened and an ubran legend was born.

Brown Trout

Another phrase that started as a joke.
If you wish to ask if someone at your table is from 2+2, it is often asked "Does the brown trout sleep in the closet?" or similiar.
This can lead to some amusing situations.

Granny Mae

Granny Mae is the most famous poster on this forum, you'll find out why when reading through the posts.
The Granny Mae (Sometimes called the GM) is the poker hand, the Q [img]/images/graemlins/spade.gif[/img] 5 [img]/images/graemlins/spade.gif[/img]. There are many theories as to why this is so.
It is from time to time played by older members of this forum by not missing a bet and sometimes the hands will be posted for general amusement.
It is not a condition of this forum that you play it in this manner.

<font color="red"> A big thanks to.... </font>

GrannyMae, jek187, Tony Corbett, Simon Diamond, Fraubump, Jim Kuhn, jasonHoldEm, AwesomeAli, Cosimo, Piers, Losing all, dink, cbfair, La Brujita, Vern, JAque, Blarg, thirddan, Whiskeytown, sammy_g, dogsballs, SackUp, Thythe, Tachyon, and of course all the people in the referenced threads for the help with this FAQ.


* * * * *


Link to Cubswin's Cryptologic FAQs.

Link to AncientPC's Video Card/Multi-Monitor FAQ

Link to Homer's Building a Bankroll, (for Newbies). (Information is mainly/all out of date. Kept for historic interest only.)

Link to FAQ: Discussion Thread - for suggestions, questions, discussion, etc, about this post.

Link to Jim Easton's Party Board Cards.

Link to DavidC's thread for those with aspirations.

Link to Tax Matters thread.

Link to Preventing Hackers thread by ColdCaller.

Link to Forum Searching Tips by loyalguard.

Link to DrPhysic's Dictionary of Online Poker Terms and Abbreviations.

Link to RJ (P.I.T.T.M.)'s "How to use Search Function".
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