Columbia Card Club Rules

We here at Card Club encourage a friendly playing environment and flexible rules.  The blind levels, and chip colors are found here: Columbia Card Club Reference Sheet . For reference to a professional ruleset, we provide the World Series of Poker Live Action Rules of 2012.  However it is important to remind all players that this is not the WSOP.  For example, we disagree with rule 58: “Cash is permitted on the table. $100 bills are the only valid money in play at the table.”  The Card Club does not consider $100 bills to be playable. 

Below are rules that have been decided through trial and error.  If and when the rules below are criticized as not what a casino would do, please keep this in mind: every casino is different has its own rules, we take no rake, our interests do not necessarily align with a casino’s, and above all please have fun.

  1. Every rule may be suspended by unanimous vote after a naive violation.
  2. Negotiation and explanation are encouraged.  Penalties are discouraged.
  3. Who decides disputes.
    1. Disputes on rules may will first be decided by players currently in the hand, and those players with a significant interest in the hand.  Disputes will be decided second by the most senior officer present.
  4. No action may be take out of turn.
    1. This includes betting, and especially folding.  If the information clearly disadvantages a player, then a moderate chip transfer may be mandated to that player from the transgressor by the floor.
    2. Example hand: Three players have made it to the river.  There were large bets pre-flop, moderate bets on the flop and no betting on the turn.  Either every player is either slow-playing or has nothing. Player 1 checks the river, and Player 2 is thinking with Player 3 behind.  Player 1 folds out of turn.  This action is unfair to Player 3, because now Player 2 only has one player left behind him, and so Player 2 is far more likely to raise than check.
  5. Player-exposed cards.
    1. If a player exposes his cards accidentally before a hand is over, those cards will play.  Cards exposed on purpose to garner a reaction, will be given one warning.  Any subsequent, purposefully exposed hands will be mucked.
  6. Player may not collude.
    1. Example hand: Three players are dealt hands.  Player 1 is the short stack and goes all-in.  Players 2 and 3 call.  Before the flop is presented, Player 2 proposes to Player 3 that they both check the entire way and run all the cards, to get Player 1 out without risking their own chips.  In this hand, if Player 3 did not agree, then Player 2 will be given a warning.  If Player 3 did agree, then Players 2 and 3 may either muck their hands, or allow Player 1 to retrieve his chips from the pot.
  7. Table talk.
    1. Unlike casinos, at the Card Club players are generally allowed to say what they wish without formal penalty.  This is mostly due to the difficulty of enforcement and arbitrariness of judgment.  Many casino rulebooks bar table talk that is “unfair,” which, in a friendly setting, cannot be consistently, fairly adjudicated (see "The Table Talk Rule" by Daniel Negreanu).
    2. However, please remember that the same people come every week, and reputation is important.  The following are topics that (justifiably) annoy some people: talking about the hand while it’s in progress (this includes pointing out possible hands that combine with the board);  asking for chip counts out of turn; postulating about an opponents hand, when there are other players still in the hand.
  8. Splitting a pot
    1. If a pot is split, and there remains a chip of the lowest denomination that cannot be split, that chip will be given to the player first to act.
  9. Betting with two players
    1. When two players remain, antes are removed.  The dealer becomes the small blind, and is the first to act before the flop.  The non-dealer is the big blind, and is first to act after the flop.