“One reason is that I have better things to do with my time. Another is that I don’t think my instant reactions to things are especially interesting. But I have to admit that I’ve also been aware for some time how many people end up destroying themselves by tweeting something really offensive. Why do people do this? Well, it turns out that many prominent people have inner demons of one kind or another — often homophobia, but also racism, sexism, or just some kind of generalized contempt for large numbers of other people. And social media make it all too easy for those demons to slip out in front of a large audience. I don’t think I have any demons like that, but who knows? And if I do make uncomfortable discoveries about myself, I’d like to do it in private, thank you.” [NYT via DI]
Fox Business, People On Twitter Just Gonna Take Spokeswoman’s Ellipses To Mean Microblogging Platform’s Plans For IPO Are OnBy Bess Levin
Twitter has finally, possibly, confirmed that it’s moving forward with a 2014 initial public offering. The notoriously tight-lipped social networking site has remained even more tight-lipped with the press amid speculation that the company is planning to go public sometime next year. But today, the company possibly for the first time, provided some “detail” about its future. FOX Business’s Katie Roof asked Twitter spokeswoman Carolyn Penner in an email if anyone at the company can “chat with me about IPO rumors.” Penner’s response, was a simple, but interesting: “…” According to the Urban Dictionary a “…”, also known as an ellipses, can be interpreted “to indicate the omission or suppression of a word or phrase. The ellipses also “usually indicates a pause or silence.” Penner has yet to respond to a request to clarify her e-mail. But several people surveyed on Twitter about Twitter’s response said Penner may have inadvertently confirmed the IPO plans since in the past Twitter has often refused to respond to questions about it. “It means she can’t say, which probably means yes,” Tweeted @HeisePete. [FBN]
In Retrospect Maybe It Was Slightly Suspect That Supposedly Legit Hedge Fund Manager Had A Habit Of Tweeting “Ching!” When A Trade Made Money, Employed A Single Analyst Whose Finance Background Was Limited To Work As A Bank TellerBy Bess Levin
Yesterday afternoon, the SEC and the Department of Justice charged hedge fund manager, YouTube star, and prolific Tweeter Anthony Davian with fraud. Like any good alleged Ponzi schemer, Davian applied the “one pot of money” philosophy to his funds’ assets, and used investor cash to buy himself an Audi Q7 Prestige, build a palace the likes of which Akron, Ohio had never seen, and collect rare pens. As is typical in these kinds of cases, the benefit of hindsight allows those who witnessed the crime unfold in real time (clients, employees, etc) say “Well, of course it was a scam,” even if it wasn’t readily apparent at the time. Although not for a lack of trying on Davian’s part! Behold, the amazing list of red flags he dangled in people’s faces (uncovered by reporter Roddy Boyd), all but begging them to pause and say “Hey wait second, would a hedge fund manager running a legitimate and successful shop…” Read more »
- buy stock in company,
- be annoying,
- sell stock back to company at higher price.
This model had many delights of which perhaps the greatest was that you couldn’t really, like, do damage to your reputation. The more annoying you are: the more the company wants to get rid of you! So the more they’ll pay. And since you’d really only get into this business if you had some natural predisposition to annoyingness, it was a nice way for some people to make a living doing what they loved. Sadly it sort of petered out after the 1980s, though you still see variants on it occasionally.
It’s fun to contrast Bill Ackman’s 2,000-word letter to the J.C. Penney board referencing his previous “several-thousand-word email to the board outlining my concerns about our current trajectory” with Carl Icahn’s 280 characters about Apple. Read more »
Earlier today, Fox Business correspondent Charlie Gasparino reported that fund of funds manager Anthony Scaramucci “plans to ask his [SkyBridge Capital] investors if they want to remain in SAC.” For those who are unaware, up until this point Scaramucci has not only kept money with SAC, but been one of the few people willing to go on the record to vigorously defend Steve Cohen, telling the press back in May, “I have enormous amount of respect for the guy, and I think he’s misunderstood” and something about bombs, trenches, and friends who run in the direction of bullets (“A lot of guys, when bombs are going off, you figure out very quickly who your friends are in the trenches. Most friends run from bullets, but your best friends run toward them”). While it’s unclear if Scaramucci’s clients will decide to part ways with SAC, the fact that he’s reportedly even entertaining the very idea of giving them the option is nothing short of shocking. A punch in the stomach. A blow the ego. A shot through the heart. If Steve Cohen were on Twitter, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that he’d be tweeting:
@Scaramucci shot through the heart
@Scaramucci and you’re to blame
@Scaramucci you give fund-of-funds a bad name
Steve Cohen’s not on Twitter, but Anthony Scaramucci is. And right about now, he appears to be saying, “My investors may or may not pull their money but you and I? We’ve got to hold on to what we’ve got. It doesn’t make a difference if we make it or not. We’ve got each other and that’s a lot.” Read more »