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INFORMATION PAGE:
INFORMATION PAGE:

I am/have tried to put everything I wish i'd known  BEFORE  I started playing
Poker on the Internet.

Most Poker Sites are off-shore (Antilles, Gibraltar, Bahamas, CostaRica ect.)
That does not mean your Money is not safe.  But; sometimes English speaking
people: Canada, USA & UK; find communication problems with site "support".

However; there are BAD Sites.  There are several Internet "watchdog" sites, that
maintain a BAD LIST of:  NO Pay Sites; Questionable Practices; and FRAUD.

Playing Popular Sites reccomended by a Forum is a good way to avoid problem sites.
TREASURE HUNTER
INTERNET  POKER
       SECRETS
INTERNET  POKER
       SECRETS
INTERNET  POKER
       SECRETS
BEFORE YOU REGISTER
at a Poker site:
BEFORE YOU REGISTER
Your (personal information) NAME:

You can get away with Registering with any name (even if you are under-age.) But; if you ever want to withdraw money you have won (From FREEROLLS or using a No Deposit Bonus) You will need to establish Positive Identification.  This generally requires a Photo ID, with the same name and address as your player Registration.  When registering on a Site; I reccomend using the same name and address as you have on your Picture ID. 

Note: (I use my Initials PJ & my mailing address is a P. O. Box.
So I  registered with these. However; most Driver's licenses
require a full name and physical address. This caused me
considerable trouble getting my money from One site,)

BEST IDEA:
If you have a scanner; Scan a your Photo ID; and save it on your computer. Also Scan a Utility Bill, with the same name & address save it on your computer. If you don't have a scanner, use your friend's  & e-mail the documents to your e-address.

NOW; you are good to Go; whenever you want to make a withdrawal.

Another Note:
If you are starting to accumulate money on a site; you might call support
& ask ahead of time, what their withdrawal requirements are: Then send
them the ID information before you even apply for a withdrawal
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BEFORE You Deposit:

Before Depositing anywhere; you should review the following information.

DEPOSITING:
In order to deposit at a site; you need to use a Credit or Debit Card. 
If you have no credit Cards you can sometimes use Wire Transfers or Western Union; but this is quite costly and takes a long time. (It might
be better to get a pre-paid Card.) Note: some Banks will not approve transfers to "gaming sites".  In that case it is necessary to use an intermediary Money Transfer Site.

The most widely used Gaming Money Transfer Sites are:  Net Teller, Fire Pay & Central Coin.                 LINKS to Services:

There are several reasons why it is better to use one of these rather
than your personal Card.  First; you probanly don't want the gaming
site to have your Credit Card information; Also, transfers to/and withdrawals from, these Sites are much quicker; AND sometimes you
get an added Bonus by depositing with the service.

USING a Deposit Service:

In order to use a Service you will need to: Register and then Deposit Funds. (Registration at these sites is FREE.) Again; you should use the name and address on your Identification.  The process is a complicated one and may take several days to complete.  For that reason I reccomend registering, at one or more, of these Sites; before you even consider depositing.  (It is not necessary to deposit to become fully activated). 

The process is as follows:

First you "register, provide account information; phone no. and e-mail address.  They will send you a validation e-mail.  They may also request you CALL them. (you will need caller ID) so they can verify the phone no. 

Before you can Deposit you will need to add a funding source: ie Credit/Debit Card or Bank Accoun(Since the USA new Internet Gaminregulations; this is a bit more difficult; some sites no longer accept USA clients.) The Site will then generally  make a deposit to your account; in most cases a few cents, (This takes awhile.) You will then be required to access your Bank information and return to their Site & enter the Deposit amounts they made.  That will Validate your account.  After that is done; you can deposit almost immediatly; then Deposit on  your gaming Site instantaniously.                 LINKS to Services:

See (Best Bonus's)  Before you deposit in any Individual Site; you will want to check out the Bonus's available and the requirements.  Some will have specific requirements to receive a Bonus.  Then; don't be too quick to make your Deposit, play a while there first; to see if you like it.
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REGISTERING  with a Poker Site:

DOWNLOADING:
You will need to either go to the Homepage of the Site, or use a Link.  It is generally better to use an affiliate Link (somebody gets the credit for your registration) Because that can usually entitle you to a Bonus or other benefit.  See (Best Bonus's).  You then select download.  Sometimes you need to give some information before the download; sometimes you will register afterwards. 

If you cannot get the site download completed;  contact support on the Site; and they can send you a download by E-mail that will install better.  You can also Order a CD to download the site.  You may want to collect the CDs of your favorite sites so you can install them easily;  if you change computers or add a laptop.  If the site has downloaded, but freezes up on installing.  Disconnect from the Internet, close all your other programs and try installation again.  If that still doesn't work; uninstall and use the above instructions for
a Link or CD from the Site.

After installing you will need to REGISTER:

REGISTERING:
Generally when you complete installation the Site will open.  It may take a longer the First time, to uprade.  You should see a login area.  You will click
on New Player or Register.  You will enter your personal information, as outlined above. Then select a nic-name or "handle". & password.

SPECIAL NOTE:
If there is a box for a CODE you will want to enter the one given you by the Site or affiliate.  If there is a space for a "friend/or person that referred you
it is good to fill in a name.  This is because when somebody referres you;
Both YOU, as well as the other person, are entitled to get an  additional "deposit Bonus";  if and when, you make a Deposit.  If you do not have a name or know someone, just pick the poker name of  anyone you have seen playing there.  These things can put Xtra Money in YOUR account.

Choosing a PASSWORD. 
Most Sites require min & max digits, some require a mix of letters & numbers. If you like to use the same password as much as posssible; select one w/both letters & numbers.  Some Sites will assign you a password and/or account number instead of letting you choose One.

I reccomend keeping a small notebook and writing down: the site Name/acct. no./password.  to keeep for reference.  Even if you use automatic login; it sometimes fails & you will need access to the information.  You should be sure use a separate passsword for Money Transfer Sites.  I write these names and numbers on the inside cover of my notebook.

Choosing a POKER NAME.
This is the name other Players will see & know you by. If you pick a name others might want also (like "PokerPrincess") You will probably need to add numbers or letters to distinguish it.  You will want to try to get a name that
will be uncommon enough; that you can have the same name on various
sites; so your Poker friends will reccognize you.  Sometimes sites will also
put your registerd home-town; or have a place for you to put your location
for other players to see.  Some players put cute notes or other information
in this place.
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BONUS'S:

There is a lot of competition to get YOU; to Register, Play and Deposit at a Poker Site.  Each site offers a variety of Bonus's; player incentives; and other benefits to get you and keep you playing at their Sites.  You will want to take advantage of these as much as possible.

There are Three Major Bonus offers.

NO DEPOSIT BONUS:

Naturally this is the Best.  These can be $5.00; $10.00; $15.00; or $20.00. The most common is the $10.00 bonus offered on many Prima Network Sites.
To get the Bonus you generally only need to register with the Site; and open a "real money" account.  you may or may not, have to enter Banking or funding information.  But; a deposit is NOT required.  The Money will be deposited into your player account and can be used to play on the Site. Note: there may be some restrictions on withdrawals.

DEPOSIT BONUS:
RE-DEPOSIT BONUS:

This is a Bonus the Site gives you when you make a specified Deposit.  It can be a Flat Amount.  (Like: "deposit $100.00 get $30.00 Free") or it can be a percentage of your Deposit.  (Like: "$100% Bonus on new Deposits & 50% on Re-Deposits").  On some Sites; you receive the Bonus, as money in your account you can use to play. Other Sites; the money is in "Bonus Dollars"
(You need to read the "Rules"  and Restrictions; before Depositing.)

REFERRAL (Friends/Buddy) BONUS:

This is really Two Bonus's. 
When you are a registered Player on a Site You refer a "Friend"; by having them come to the site & register & give your name; either in a referral or Code box.  You will receive (usually a Flat amount; Say; $50.00) deposited in your player account; when your "friend" fulfills becomes eligible to receive their Bonus. Note; their Bonus is in ADDITION to whatever "Deposit Bonus" they had.  This is usually also a Flat amount. Even if the "Deposit Bonus was %.
 
Note: Some sites have programs for you to furnish  e-mail address for them to mail "Invitations" from you, to your list of "friends". 
I DO NOT reccomend this.
It puts you and your Friends on SPAM LISTS; for numerous gaming Sites.

WHAT ARE:

BONUS DOLLARS:

This is "Money" put in your account by your Poker site; that cannot be
used until it is "released" or Converted into "real cash".  (it is sometimes called different names.
You can receive Bonus Dollars; as a Deposit Bonus. 
On some sites you can WIN them in Freeroll PokerTournaments.

PLAYER POINTS:

These are Points "earned" on the Poker Site. They are usually called "frequent player points'; but have differnt names on different sites.
You can receive Bonus Points; as a Deposit Bonus.  On some sites you can WIN them in Freeroll; or other PokerTournaments.  You can also "earn" them  spending money on a Site.  Sometimes you get Points for Tournament entry Fees.  Sometimes; for playing a certain number of "hands"; on the Site at individual Tables.  Sometimes they are given for numbers of "Raked" hands  for different denomination game play.

RAKE:

The Rake is the Percentage taken by the "house"/Gaming site.  It  is a percentage of "the Pot" in Table (ring) Games.  This percentage varies by individual Sites.  This must be disclosed & you can find it on the Site.  Some sites take their Percentage of every Pot, period!  Other sites have what they call "no Flop-no Drop" Policy; and do not take a Rake if the flop is not seen.

RAKED HANDS:

What your Site considers a "Raked Hand" for earning Points; and "releasing" Bonus Money; also  varies from Site to Site.  Some sites give you credit for "playing" the Hand; if you are NOT "sitting out" & are dealt Cards; even if you fold.  Other sites; require that you have "personally" contributed to the Pot, to get credit for "playing"  the Hand. .

Others base your Points or Credit on the (Dollar Amount) of the Rake. Some even go so far as to only count your  personal contribution towards the (Dollar Amount) of the Rake.  Note: these last requirements are generally used by Sites that promise to "RETURN" a percentage of the Rake to you.

BONUS RESTRICTIONS:

On some Sites; when you receive a Deposit Bonus, instead of money Deposited  in your account you can use; the money is in "Bonus Dollars", that need to be "converted to "real cash", before you can use them to play.  These require either the accumulation of " a certain number of "player Points"; per Dollar to be "released". 

Sometimes the requirement is to play a specified number of  "Raked Hands" to release/convert each Dollar of Bonus.

On some sites it is a "Wagering Requirement": you are required to "wager" /BET; so many times the Bonus Amount.
(for Example; if the it were 5-times the Bonus amount; and you received $20.00; your bets would need to total $100.00; to have the Bonus released)  Guess you need to win some of those Bets. 
(Read the "Rules" & Restrictions before Depositing.)

WITHDRAWAL REQUIREMENTS:

Even though you have gotten "Free" money to use for "playing" does not mean you can withdraw; either your "No deposit Bonus"  OR the winnings you have  accumulated using the Bonus.  It is common that before you can "withdraw" you must must either meet a "Raked Hand" requirement; OR a "Wagering" Requirement (above).  Usually; if you have managed to accumulate some winnings; (rather than losing the Bonus Money) you will meet these requirements.

CATCH 22

Even though you have "MET" the requirements; there can be a complication when you attempt to make a withdrawal.  For example: you try to withdraw using your Fire Pay account.  You will get a message that you can only withdraw using this account, if you Deposited by that method.  This will be the same message no matter which way you attempt to withdraw.  If you contact support; some sites may make an accomidation for you.  But; with most sites; you will need to make a Deposit; before you can withdraw.
PLAYER INCENTIVES:

To keep you Playing at their site numerous incentives are offered.  Mainly sites offer bigger Games and Better Prizes; Opportunities to play against Poker Pro's and the possibility to win your way to the Worlds Series of Poker.

FREEROLLS:
I believe; Cash Prize, Freerolls get more players to a Site than any other promotion. The bigger the Prize Pool; the more players are attracted to the Site.  Besides the Bonus monies and Player Points mentioned above;  Individual encouragements to Deposit often include entry to a "Special New Player  FREEROLL";  for New Depositors only.  Some also offer BIG PRIZE FREEROLLS  for Player Point accumulation; or "Leaderboard" Position.
Many Sites have FREEROLLS that serve as Satallites giving you entry into a higher Buy-in Tournament.  Someone could even work their way up to a Trip and Seat; in a World Poker Tour Event; or Seat at the WSOP.

LEADERBOARDS:
Frequent Players are Ranked; by the frequent Player Points Earned. (The more you BET; the more Points you earn.)  Top players are rewarded by entry into Freerolls; or other special tournament Games.  Some Sites give Money Prizes; or other Gifts for top placement in the leaderboards.

E-Mail Newsletter.
Most sites also have special promotions ansd Bonus offerings to their players in their monthly Newsletter.


FREE (Play Money) SITES

Another development is the creation of TOTALLY FREE Poker Sites.

There are Two Types:
First; are "New" Sites that are "Testing" their softwre.  They start out with  play Money Games and Frerolls; with the intentiion to change to a "REAL" Money Site at some time in the Future. These are sometimes fun & give you the opportunity to accumulate some Money during the Free Play ; that you can use when the Site becomes a "Real Money Site".  They sometimes offer better Bonus's and incentives to their early players.
(Poker Champs was One of these.)

Second: Are Sites that are operated for advertising and promotional purposes, to either create a Brand/Name awareness, dislay advertising or may act as a Portal  to ptomote a Money Site.  They are  ONLY intended to be used for FREE Play. (the Bike is an example that both promotes their liveCasino/Poker Room; but gives free tickets & links to another "real" Site).

These are Great! You will see a few Poker related advertisements. But; you wont have to worry about banking, Security or losing money.

We are working on arranging a sponsorship by one of the best of these Free Poker Sites,  To provide us all with Risk Free Poker; along with some Daily Freerolls with REAL Cash prizes.

USA PLAYERS:
Because of the new "Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act" some Poker Sites have seen fit to deny access by USA Players; although the actual language of the Act does not prohibit Poker; which is a game of "skill" and not a game of "chance. Some of these Sites are affiliated with "Sports Books"; and many more sponsor Casino betting as well.  These activities DO fit the definition of prohibited wagering under the language of the Act.  So even if you are not lawfully prohipited from Poker; you could be lawfully prevented from wagering at these types of sites (including Bingo). 
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This page was last updated on: 9/2/2011
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