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« Welcome Area Windfall | Main | Gone...Over to the WSE »

August 08, 2007

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Tyffany Flintoff

Prokofy

The sad thing about this is that your own urge to be contrarian to the extreme has prevented you from being of any value to this debate.

Ginko, was, and remains, precisely the sort of griefing that you could have been instrumental in stopping.

It would be interesting to take a straw poll of the depositors who have lost money on Ginko and ask them their opinion. "Were you defrauded or did you realise it wasn't a bank and you were just gambling?"

Prokofy Neva

Ginko is not a griefer. It's a known quantity. It's a very high-risk investment club for high rollers.

All those people who put in small deposits got the same very simple, straightforward, one paragraph explanation that all of us did.

You always take an anti-Ginko position in every post-- you clearly have some vested interest here in some manner.

Anyway, take your Humiliatrix crap out of here, it's not consensual.

IntLibber Brautigan

For once, Prok, I have to commend your writing here. You reported the facts as they are and did so comprehensively. If only all your writing were this way.

Prokofy Neva

Intlibber, you surely have an agenda here, it will manifest itself in due course.

Jim Schack

>Intlibber, you surely have an agenda here, it will manifest itself in due course.

Well, it was a complement.

Allana Dion

Not that I support the UIGA, I don't. This was a sneaky despicable move made by the US government. However, Linden Lab does not have the means to do battle with the US government in order to salvage the small businesses and part time hobbies of it's customers. They'd be insane to try.

>"Real life took the form not only of the Lindens, apparently, making a business decision to pre-comply with UIGA without actually waiting for any kind of criminal probe from the FBI."

Actually yes they were investigated by the FBI, Philip himself has been dealing with them. It wasn't the gambling with play money that was the problem. It was the LindeX that made the feds twinge.

Linden Lab didn't ban gambling because gambling with play money is illegal, they banned it because it is now illegal for the LindeX to be used to exchange play money for real money if there is even the possibility that play money could be gambling income.

It is (until this law is overturned) illegal for "credit card and money transfer companies" to accept payments from gambling institutions. Had the feds at any point determined that those individuals (Linden Lab) were in fact exchanging money they knew could potentially be gambling income, then US banks would have been legally obligated to cease all transactions with Linden Lab.

And they didn't "pre-comply". In fact they waited until the last possible minute (beyond it even) to comply if my information is correct.

The UIGA was passed (in a sneaky underhanded manner) on Oct 13 2006 and (this quote is from your own link prok) "after which it will take up to 270 days before the new rules are fully enforced. "

10/13/06 plus 270 days means that the deadline for all financial institutions to begin complying with the law would have been July 11th 2007. Linden Lab made their announcement on July 25th 2007.

(someone can correct me if my dates or my math are wrong here, it's after midnight and I'm about to crawl up to bed, so I may be less than exact)

As for Ginko ... hello? Portocarro was investing Ginko funds in gambling institutions in Second Life, then he should have been keeping up on gambling laws and at the very least keeping up with the Linden Blog. If his investments in gambling institutions were so large as to have affected his ability to make withdrawal payouts then he should have seen this possibility back when the issue of just advertising gambling was raised on the blog. He didn't pull out back then when he could have done it quietly and easily, this mess is his own fault.

This is simply a story of a young guy who tried to make a buck running a "bank" without the knowledge and experience needed to do so.

Prokofy Neva

Allana, the Lindens have not been "investigated by the FBI". That idea is completely silly. I don't know where you get this crap. Second Citizen?

I've talked with Robin and other Lindens about this a number of times, both at their office hours and in emails. They make it clear that they voluntarily showed the casino issue to the FBI.

It's not as if the LindEx is hidden, either.

No Fed with any warrant came bursting in the door.

We all understand that the nature of the UIGA involves credit card transfers knowingly based on gambling/wagering income. But in fact, the first round of response involved only the advertising suspension, not suspension of the casinos themselves.

They likely waited for a readout from lawyers, and consulted with the Feds, not under fire of a probe, but in good faith. Then they moved to act in compliance.

Nicholas is rather experienced at this point, young though he may be. I don't doubt he was shrewd about trying to get out of the gambling deals, but they may have been harder to get out of than one imagines.

In fact the Lindens did pre-comply, in that they didn't respond to a legal notice or an action, they unilaterally complied when it was clear that it was relevant to them.

Allana Dion

Inviting the feds = requested investigation. They didn't invite them over for tea.

>"In fact the Lindens did pre-comply, in that they didn't respond to a legal notice or an action, they unilaterally complied when it was clear that it was relevant to them."

And had they waited for legal action, they would have risked losing the ability to continue doing any business at all with US banks and credit card companies. How long would LL or SL have lasted then?

They made the right and reasonable decision for once. The fallout is inevitable and out of their hands.

(ugh I hate insomnia)

Prokofy Neva

The Lindens invited them -- that's how THEY describe it. THEY consulted with the Feds. The Feds didn't request an investigation. There is no numbered, foldered, titled "investigation". It is a "chat". If you have information to the contrary, provide links. This is how THEY tell it.

They precomplied without waiting for any opening of an investigation or even hint of a charge; or even a read-out on all their games.

Kazuhiko Shirakawa

>>> It would be interesting to take a straw poll of the depositors who have lost money on Ginko and ask them their opinion. "Were you defrauded or did you realise it wasn't a bank and you were just gambling?"

As for me? The latter.

It was fun living off the interest while it lasted, but I didn't put in any money in I couldn't afford to lose, nor did I become dependent on my money there nor the steady stream of interest -- any thing I paid from that I could have paid out of my pocket, which is what I'll start doing now.

The forums on ginkofinancial.com (before site logins were closed) also had a fair number of people with similar attitudes.

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