Leaders of poker rooms from around the globe, both online and off, met Wednesday in BudapestHungary for the World Poker Congress. The two day conference featured several topics with this year’s strongest focus being the legality of online poker in the US including a California proposal for a state-owned online establishment. Other topics included player issues, global standards for tournament poker rules and workshops on how to host a tournament.

Keynote speakers were Hendrik Knopp of bwin.com and Steve Lipscomb, founder and CEP of World Poker Tour. Discussion included the future of poker, the growth in the Asian and Latin American markets, use of electronic poker tables in land casinos and possible consolidation of online poker rooms. Of course, the ongoing debate of skill vs. chance being the basis of the game.

The aim of the World Poker Congress is to bring together live and online poker businesses to forge an understanding of the differences and similarities between them, “ said Dawn Kirkwood, the event’s organizer, “Our conferences are designed to facilitate dialogue and we feel strongly that in order for poker to flourish as a worldwide sport, both sectors will need to learn as much from each other as possible. In the long-run, that will enable growth.”