Imagine sitting in your living room and playing in a Texas Holdem tournament in Europe. Are your poker buddies on vacation and you have no one to play cards with? Not a problem! You can play online Texas Holdem. Poker is one of the hottest online games available, and some sites even organize worldwide championships. However, this cyber poker community comes with some problems. In this article, we’ll weigh the pros and cons of playing cards online.
Texas Holdem has exploded in popularity in recent years. Television networks around the world carry major tournaments, such as the World Series of Poker, and many players have gained celebrity status. Who doesn’t know who Daniel Negreanu, Chris Ferguson, Phil Hellmuth, Doyle Brunson, Phil Ivey, Huck Seed, Joe Hachem, Jennifer Tilly or Annie Duke are? And the list goes on. Additionally, much of this popularity can be credited to online Holdem sites. These websites monitor traffic of course, and one site recently reported that during one 24-hour period 7,341 players played for real money in online Holdem tournament games, 7,072 players wagered real money in ring poker games, and that more than US$141 million was wagered in online ring games during that 24-hour period. That is a phenomenal amount of players, games and money changing hands!
There are several reasons why people opt to play Texas Holdem online. Convenience is the first benefit. Instead of having to get dressed up and getting to a busy, expensive casino, poker players can relax in their own home. There are no expensive drinks and costly tips eating into your winnings, no distracting crowds, and you can have books and notes at hand to help you play your cards more strategically. You can play any day of the week, at any time of the day. For poker novices, getting the chance to play Holdem online provides a wonderful training ground where they can get some experience without spending a lot of money. Many sites offer two-penny antes. However, the seasoned player with a tried and true Texas Holdem strategy can play at multiple tables simultaneously to increase their winnings.
Where there’s gambling there’s the potential for addiction and this is also true for online Texas Holdem. In addition to the problems the Internet presents for compulsive gamblers, betting sites are often a teenager’s first exposure to Internet gambling and the promise of big winnings. The earlier a person is exposed to betting and gambling, the more likely they are to develop a gambling problem later in life. People who play Texas Holdem online seem to be more vulnerable to addiction because of several factors. The person may not feel they are actually playing with real money because they are using a credit card, and online games are always available so it’s very easy to lose track of time. It is so important for players to exercise discipline and know when to walk away. If you think you’re developing an addiction to online gaming, then block the sites from your computer and seek help for a gambling addiction.
Dress codes, crowded tables, expensive drinks; these are all hallmarks of the casinos. However, online Texas Holdem has changed the way that players embrace their favorite pastime. In 2006, 14 billion dollars changed hands in Internet gaming rooms. If you are among the millions of people who do choose to play Texas Holdem online, then set up a safety net for yourself by making discipline a part of your Holdem strategy. Limit the amount you are willing to lose and stick to it, and set a definite period of time to play. By doing these two things, you’ll be able to enjoy online poker with no adverse ramifications.
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