With the volatile situation surrounding the state of poker and US law, we can certainly expect some questions about these subjects. How should they be treated? Are they welcome at all? Does any special consideration need to be made for the fact that things will change frequently?

3 Answers 3


I believe any question about the laws and legalities regarding poker, gambling, online tournaments, etc. should be closed as too localized.

Laws vary widely from country to country, and even state to state, and they also change over time. Any question regarding the legal status of gambling would reflect a limited geographic region, and, more importantly, a single point in time. While the limited geographic region isn't a deal breaker (information about the laws in the U.S. or even in the state of New Jersey, for example, is certainly of interest to a sufficient number of people), the changing nature of laws is. This content would not be of lasting use to the internet community simply because there is no guarantee that any information provided would be up to date by the time someone comes across the answer when searching for information.

Furthermore, we are (for the most part) not lawyers, so any advice regarding "yes, this is legal" or "no, this is not legal" must be taken with such a large grain of salt that I question its usefulness to our community.

Answers that consist of fairly general discussion, with links to specific, relevant, official government sites that describe the current relevant laws would avoid the issue of our site containing potentially out-dated information, but answers that consist of nothing but links to other resources probably aren't indicative of high quality questions.


Questions about the legality of poker should be allowed. Posters should be allowed to answer them to the best of their ability. One does not have to be a lawyer specialized in online gambling law to be able to contribute to the conversation.


I think we should evaluate the questions the way we would any other question. The community should be able to police itself. Unless it shows it can not will not I see no reason to close these questions as a rule. Some questions will likely be On-topic and fit.

  • If we don't have at least general guidelines, the community will not be able to police itself. If you think legal questions should be allowable, that's fine, but you should put more justification here than just "the community will figure it out on a case by case basis". The meta determines how the community should respond, and not just guidelines for when moderators need to step in.
    – Beofett
    Jan 23, 2012 at 13:49
  • @Beofett - And we have them with our standard guidelines. Questions asking for opinion and/or speculation are not constructive. Questions about penalties would be off topic (not about poker). Questions that are about clearly illegal behavior are off topic. The fact that the money makes poker illegal in some places is one reason I think that talk about specific stakes should be discouraged. But all of those are handled by the standard rules for evaluating questions. The only exception we are making is the hand history questions.
    – Chad
    Jan 23, 2012 at 14:43

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .