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Mark Cuban Lives in Hot Water



If there is anyone who is representative of all the potential, all the excess and all the celebrity that the Internet economy has offered up to this point, it’s Mark Cuban. His flamboyant style keeps him in the news in one way or another and his mounds of cash from the sale of Broadcast.com to Yahoo! during the first internet gold rush has allowed him to live a life that most can only dream of (if that’s your sort of thing). Well, today that dream life may be looking more like a nightmare as the SEC investigates charges of insider trading by Mr. Cuban.

Today’s front page of the Wall Street Journal features Cuban in his classic “I can’t believe that idiot referee just made that call against my team and I will have his head on a platter” pose. Are there any other pictures of this guy out there other them him pitching a hissy fit on the sidelines of an NBA game? His less than adult behavior has helped him ring up more than $2 million in fines during his tenure as the owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks. Considering his wealth that is just ‘throw around’ money but still why couldn’t he just feed some hungry kids rather than acting like one.

It appears that his impetuous nature has garnered him the 2 words that may actually be worse than ‘IRS audit’ and those are ‘SEC investigation’. Yikes, aren’t there usually big fines and jail time associated with those things? All of this stems from a 6% stake in Mamma.com which was sold by Mr. Cuban following some information that was given to him by the company’s CEO, Guy Faure. The details seem to be many but the one that stands out is the arrogance of this guy and his handlers. His lawyer, Christopher Clark had this to say:

We’re shocked. We find it incredible that with all the important issues that the SEC has to address with regards to today’s economy they’ve sought to bring a $750,000 case relating to a he-said, she-said about one trade against a person whose integrity has never been questioned before with regard to the securities markets.

Funny how he needed to qualify how Mr. Cuban’s integrity has never been questioned about the securities markets because it is questioned everywhere else due to his childish antics. Granted, the details seem a bit sketchy and the case may be one that doesn’t deserve this kind of attention but this guy thrives on attention. In his case, is online reputation monitoring or any type of reputation monitoring needed because nothing is secret with him? At what point does the persona end and the person begin? It will be interesting to see if this dings Mr. Cuban in any way since he has recently suffered some embarrassment about publically stating his desire to buy the Chicago Cubs but apparently not being able to raise the money he said he could.

So what’s the internet marketing angle? I would say it’s more of an internet angle in general. You need to be careful about what you put out there at any level because people are watching. Attitudes and actions are now monitored at a level unheard in modern times. I suspect that Mr. Cuban should have taken the more relaxed attitude he displayed on his blog last summer when he wrote:

Is there anything more fun than sitting around, growing your hair, drinking a Bud while listening to Jethro Tull and pondering how to change the balance of power in the search world and unseat Google?

Uh, Mark? This is reality checking in with you. Unseating Google appears to be the least of your concerns (and probably pretty far removed from reality). Maybe a few less alleged insider trading moves and some time off to try to exhibit some good behavior would be better?

  • Dean

    This is just Martha Stewart Part II. The only way Cuban will get into any real hot water is if he perjures himself. I think the the SEC like to bring these types of cases to remind people that they are out there. I am no Cuban fan but like Martha Stewart this is just a high profile handwaving by the SEC.

    By the way $750,000 equals about .03% of his net worth and financially means less to him than the $20 I illegally wagered on the Superbowl.

  • http://www.rickhendershot.com Rick Hendershot

    Who’s Mark Cuban?

    Rick Hendershot’s last blog post..No Autoresponder? Are You Missing The Boat?

  • http://bonzerwolf.livejournal.com/ Bonzer Wolf

    Mr. Cuban called the government’s allegations false and indicated a belief that SEC staffers were out to get him. He will will vigorously fight to prove his innocence. IMHO this is just another example of the feds unfairly making an example of a high-profile citizen who has dared to publicly criticize the government. $750,000 is chump change to Mark Cuban and he has never made a secret of his sale of mamma.com stock when the company decided to go “private” and change direction. Mr. Cuban is a long time critic of both the federal government and the SEC.

    I hope that this federal targeting will inspire Mr. Cuban to support the Libertarian Party with some of his billions. Government at all levels is too large, too expensive, woefully inefficient, arrogant, intrusive, and downright dangerous. Democratic and Republican politicians have created the status quo and do not intend to change it. http://www.lp.org

    Bonzer Wolf’s last blog post..BlackBerry Posting

  • http://www.dylandarling.com Dylan Darling

    I think Mark Cuban’s “less than adult behavior” is pretty funny. Who wouldn’t want to play for an owner who cares about each an every game that much. As for him vs. the SEC, I think he’ll fight and prevail.

  • http://www.greatpriceshere.com Nicole Price

    Total hog wash. They need to make their presence felt in these difficult days.

    Nicole Price’s last blog post..The Best Recipe Sites

  • Matt B.

    I find it incredibly refreshing to see a billionaire not act like a stuffy rich guy with no real-world connections.

    At least the guy comes off as being a normal guy. Just because he’s rich he can’t scream at the refs like a normal fan/person?

  • http://bonzerwolf.livejournal.com/ Bonzer Wolf

    Nicole, the SEC needed to make their presence felt BEFORE these difficult days. Are you telling us that Mark Cuban being screwed by Mamma.com is the reason we are in for a long and deep recession? In the words of Brian Macker, “Does the SEC really want to establish that a CEO who is about to announce bad news need only call his major shareholders to be able to prohibit them from trading?”

    Yeah, the secret news given Cuban was essentially “We’re about to F you over, Chump.” I don’t see how that should be considered a matter of fiduciary responsibility.

    Bonzer Wolf’s last blog post..BlackBerry Posting

  • http://www.amiohayon.com Ami Ohayon

    He’s kind of a loudmouth, so makes an easy target … there’s something satisfying about watching him get humbled a little.

    But that said; this sounds like a nonsense charge, and in the current climate I’d sooner see the SEC put their energy elsewhere.

  • http://www.insidetraderapp.com Jeff

    This sure seems pretty bogus. With all the bailout crap going on this is the best the SEC can come up with? Definitely seems like some shady work in the SEC; I think I’ll keep my inside trading to my iphone. (http://www.insidetraderapp.com)

  • http://financialbreakthrough101.com/themoneyblog/ Kenney @ Work From Home Blog

    Ggood for Mark though. He does a good job of using his celeb status…”sometimes”. He obviously doesn’t care. And he’s not as bad as some. lol

  • http://www.paystolivegreen.com Patrick

    I am glad that people like him are actually getting punished. They make tons of money as it is and to continue to make further money by doing underhanded things like this. What I don’t get is that is the small amount of money he earned from this ( compared to his net worth ) really worth going to jail for?

    Patrick’s last blog post..Nanotechnology Dangerous for Your Health and The Environment?

  • http://bonzerwolf.livejournal.com/ Bonzer Wolf

    Patrick, this is the United States and people don’t go to jail for violations of Civil Law. It seems that civics and capitalism are not your “thing”. May I recommend Cuba or North Korea? I think you will find them much more to your liking than you do the United States of America.

    Bonzer Wolf’s last blog post..BlackBerry Posting

  • Nick

    This story is silly. Mark Cuban is an easy target, and the way folks are pushing this story really reflects quite a bit of jealousy, imho. Mark is self-made and passionate and I respect that. Check out his blog…he doesn’t need any insider information to make money. Mr. Cuban’s a great thinker and his thoughts on how to fix the economy are the best I’ve seen.

  • http://www.gadgets4nowt.co.uk PS3

    Being from over the pond I have to say I have never heard of the guy (hides head in shame (: )

    Everyone is entitled to a rant now and again but $2 million in fines strikes me as “teddies out of the pram”. Or are his complaints to the ref justified?

  • http://www.frankthinking.com Frank Reed

    “Teddies out of the pram” – that is a classic. Thanks for the laugh in otherwise dismal times, PS3.

    Frank Reed’s last blog post..SMB’s and SEO Basics – Content Truly is King

  • http://www.internetmarketingaccess.com Internet Marketing Access

    I find it strange that this is just now coming up after 4 years around the same time he has shown major interest in purchasing the Chicago Cubs. I know the inner baseball circle (team owners) really show no interest in him being an owner as he is outspoken and at times over the top. I wonder if a team owner pulled a string or two to get this brought up after 4 years. We will never know.

    @imaccess

    Internet Marketing Access’s last blog post..How To Create An Ebook And Where To Start

  • http://www.paystolivegreen.com Patrick

    I am taking a different angle on this situation. There are probably tons of people currently participating in inside trading and not being prosecuted by the federal government. Recently, Cuban financed a movie talking badly about the federal government and their involvement in 9-11. I do not agree with the movie at all, but this seems like a form of payback for funding this movie.

    Patrick’s last blog post..UN Worried About Asia’s Brown Soot Cloud Problem

  • http://www.diamondonnet.com/ Diamonds

    I’m sorry for him but hey if he is guilty then he should pay just like everybody else…

    Diamonds’s last blog post..EGL USA versus EGL International or EGL Israel

  • http://www.livelifetothefullest.biz/wpblog Matt Helphrey

    Guilty or not guilty? Cuban really seems like the type of guy who will do anything to win…I just don’t know if he would ever cheat the system. Time will tell

    Matt Helphrey’s last blog post..Creating a Home Based Business

  • http://www.jumpstartvideos.com Salihu

    Maybe he needs to bring attention to himself from time to time. Some of these rich folks do, you know. Do US government agencies like the the IRS, FBI etc really target individuals because they criticize government. Then maybe they are no different from those in third world countries.

  • http://antivirus.getthebestinfo.com Antivirus 2009

    If the allegations were true, it is a case of a high-profile person with a skeleton on his closet. In today’s digital age, no one can keep secrets that long. Sooner or later, people, let alone the authorities, would find it out.

  • http://www.allresellerpackage.com/blog allresellerman

    give me 2 yea from now… i will be like u bro

  • http://www.hsbc.co.uk/1/2/personal/current-accounts Monica – current accounts

    well,I find it incredibly refreshing to see a billionaire not act like a stuffy rich guy with no real-world connections. At least the guy comes off as being a normal guy. Just because he’s rich he can’t scream at the refs like a normal fan/person?

  • http://www.osyme.net OSYM

    Ggood for Mark though. He does a good job of using his celeb status…”sometimes”. He obviously doesn’t care. And he’s not as bad as some. lol

    OSYM’s last blog post..Aralıktaki Sınav için Son Gün

  • http://www.osyme.net OSYM

    I think Mark Cuban’s “less than adult behavior” is pretty funny. Who wouldn’t want to play for an owner who cares about each an every game that much. As for him vs. the SEC, I think he’ll fight and prevail.

    OSYM’s last blog post..Aralıktaki Sınav için Son Gün

  • http://freecelebritypicture.blogspot.com Free Celebrity Picture

    How about cold water?? awesome guy

    Free Celebrity Picture’s last blog post..Heidi Klum Free Wallpaper