Friday, September 03, 2010

Just Conjecturin', Volume 25: Flotsam, Jetsam and other Errata

While I'm waiting for a few hotter leads in the ongoing scandals to work themselves out, I've decided to go back and correct a few of the things I've gotten wrong in previous posts. From Post 1 of this entire series, when I didn't know nearly as much as I do today, I said I'd be willing to get things wrong and fix them later if that's what it took to force the full stories out.

That's why I named this the "Conjecturin'" series way back when. From


con·jec·ture (kən jek′c̸hər)


1. an inferring, theorizing, or predicting from incomplete or uncertain evidence; guesswork: an editorial full of conjecture
2. an inference, theory, or prediction based on guesswork; guess
3. Obsolete occult divination

Definition #3 is cool, but a bit off track. Moving on....

It wasn't until after the first half dozen posts or so that new facts and evidence began to emerge, but by then it hardly paid to change the series' title. I even said this, back in that JC #1: "Note that I could be full of it on some of the details, but here's the start of my best guess as to how it all unfolded."

Way back in that JC #1, I theorized incorrectly that it was 2001 when UltimateBet came together. It was actually 1999, and the genesis of it may have been back in 1998. Though the date was wrong, my theories of how and why it came together seem to have been more or less on the mark, even if I now know those thoughts were very incomplete and described only a small part of the greater picture.

Probably the place where I went most off course was in JC #6, where I attempted a mathematical exploration of what happened to 2.6 million shares that were forfeited as part of the initial scandal developments at UB. It was clear that 4.3 of the 6.9 million shares that were forcibly seized belonged to Russ Hamilton, but the other 2.6 million's ownership was anybody's... conjecture. I attempted a complicated mathematical explanation that hinted that these shares might have been Fred David's, as David was a known key member of the operations staff and was indeed the person whose name was connected to the much-publicized "-fred-" internal transfer account, one of at least five such transfer accounts that existed. Those transfer accounts had no purpose for existing except to shuffle money around, sometimes legitimately, sometimes not.

But it now appears that Fred David was just the loyal soldier/company worker following orders from ownership, though of course time will tell all. The -fred- account may not even have been under his unilateral control. Moreover, his shares were not among those seized as part of the remainder of that initial 6.9 million cancellation, nor were his shares among those surrendered in the second round of share annulments, though those of three others were. I've held back from publicizing those three names because at least one of those was also innocent of the cheating, but was seemingly caught in some legal trickery. There have been some dirty lawyers afoot. Lots of them.

Also, the early JC posts that looked at hand histories were simply a false lead. The UB hand histories as released were nothing but a complicated attempt to obfuscate the real truth while attempting to justify the refunded amounts as being a whole and fair settlement. But it was always a shell game, and I wasted a couple of days back then trying to find examples of cheating that simply didn't, couldn't exist in what was provided. I won't delete those posts because I wrote them back then in good faith (and misguided effort), but except for exposing the bogus and chopped-up nature of the hand histories and how they were parceled out to players, the content within the hands themselves is pretty much worthless.

The reason why complete UB hand histories have never been released is very simple: Doing so would expose other accounts and different avenues of cheating and theft not already publicly acknowledged, even if in relatively smaller quantities than the $22 million or so accounted for in the one massive family of cheating accounts already partially exposed. There's more to it than that, but that's the bottom line.

That's enough for today, I think.


Rakewell said...

I've used my little blog to put up a couple of pointers to one or the other of your JC series, trying to get it what attention I can, but I've been reading it for too long without leaving a personal note of appreciation. This must be pretty damn thankless work, but it's important, and I admire your tenacity and integrity.

Bob Woolley
(Poker Grump)

Haley said...

Thanks, Grumpy!