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Before I begin, I would like to inform the readers that this is my first writing here on this website. I chose to remain anonymous and go by the name “Silent-Spade” nothing less; nothing more. I will post regularly; giving you a different angle and way of seeing things. Granted I do not know everything, nor want to be perceived that way, but I guarantee that you will see things differently or at the least, question the topics that I will cover. My writings are my own personal thoughts and beliefs and my views are not the views of MakePokerLegal.com and Short Stacked LLC. So with that note, I will cover Joe Sebok and his response to the accusations of blackmail.

 

Boy Blunder has done it again

Joe Sebok has made an apology to Jon “FatalError” Aguiar and to everyone in the poker community for his actions last week. Sebok sent a threatening message to Aguiar via twitter.  The message was sent not to long after Aguiar made comments on twitter, attacking Prahlad Friedman after he (Prahlad) accused Isaac Haxton & Justin Bonomo of sharing online poker accounts. Joe Sebok’s message was

Might wanna chill on the UB hate a little, man. You + your gf may have a skeleton or two that you wouldn’t want public, no? Chill out.

Aguiar is claiming that Sebok is trying to blackmail him. He even went as far as to post the message on a poker forum.  Here are portions of the message as well as image of a text message Sebok had sent.

Jon Aguiar

I’d like to preface this post by saying that even though I have played major tournaments for years now and consider myself a part of the poker world i consider myself a nobody. I’m not a site pro, probably never will be, and for the most part i live a pretty normal life.

During the Prahlad twitter fiasco a few days ago i received a direct message from Joe Sebok on twitter, you can see the content here via iphone screen shot, Joe is friends with the owners of twitter so he’d be able to prove if this is fake (which is obviously isn’t)

Text message sent by Joe Sebok

 

Honestly, I don’t know where to start with this. Besides being borderline illegal behavior and absurdly unprofessional, i don’t have any skeletons!!! In response to this i have a series of demands before i consider putting this unbelievable incident behind me.

1. Joe apologizes in this thread and on twitter for his behavior

2. Joe posts whatever “skeletons” he has about my girlfriend and. We have never done anything we are ashamed of and demand to know what serious allegations Joe thinks he is privy to.

3. Ultimate Bet releases a public apology to my girlfriend and me for the behavior of Joe as a representative of UB

While I feel like i could say a lot more about this i also feel like i need not prove my case any further, i simply feel that this needs to be publicized so people realize what Joe is really doing with his time instead of finding the true UB Killers.

Sebok has been looked at very closely since he joined UB in 2009 not to mention the scandal that Travis Makar touched on several weeks ago. This past Tuesday Sebok created an account on another poker forum (at the time of this writing; we believe that Joe Sebok did actually create the account)  and posted an apology. Here are key excerpts from Seboks apology:

After a ton of deliberation and chatting with friends, one being Shane Schleger, and reading through some of the pages of this thread, I feel like it’s time to clear the air on the Jon Aguiar incident as best I can, as well as address some UB-related comments.

AGUIAR
First of all, I take full responsibility that my initial DM was overly aggressive and out of line. For that I apologize.

When I signed on with UB almost two years ago, I saw it as an opportunity to help turn a company around. I’ve been called everything from naive to a douche for thinking I could help change the company and the perception there, but I still feel like I have done my best, and am still making positive steps with UB. I have put a ton of work into those efforts. And because I have, I take the continued knocks against UB personally. Sometimes I act or say things in reaction that I wish I could take back. And given the way Aguiar was bashing UB with the Prahlad/Ike incident, even though it had nothing to do with UB, I reacted quickly and made a bad decision. No escaping that.

Now, did I view that DM to Jon as private? Absolutely. Do I think taking a private message and asking for a public apology is strange? That’s irrelevant. I shouldn’t have sent it, plain and simple. Jon made his decisions after that, and over 700+ posts later, here we are.

All I’ll add to this is that in no way, shape, or form was that message an attempt to blackmail Jon or threaten him, and I don’t believe he thought that legitimately for one second. I was not telling him I was literally going to expose skeletons in his closet, albeit my choice of words was obviously dreadful in that regard. I just wanted him to chill out on UB and realize that the company had nothing to do with the current disagreement between Prahlad/Ike. I just chose a bad way of expressing that. Given that I tweeted to “be a man” about it I’m sure didn’t help things either. I’m pretty sure most people who know me know I’m not the street fighting type, and I wasn’t asking Jon to come meet me there. I was understandably upset that he posted a private message in a public forum, and I wanted him to talk to me privately about it. I also feel that he has actively publicly misrepresented the situation when he knew better after that, but that’s neither here nor there. My initial written post was a complete breakdown of all the ways that he had done so, but that just continues to fuel this fire and doesn’t get us anywhere productive at all, so I scrapped it.

In summary, I made a mistake and I apologize for that mistake. If Jon feels that he owes anyone an apology, I’ll leave that up to him to decide.

UB
With Travis Makar going on Donkdown (which, despite my personal feelings about them, I think they did a good job handling) and Haley’s most recent blog on Greg Pierson, there’s been a lot of new chatter on UB.
1. I’ve never said that the current management group didn’t make some dire mistakes in their handling of the cheating scandal in the early stages, before I came on board. They did, and they know it. I simply do not believe that they a) actively helped the individuals who cheated to do so or get away with it, b) have doctored hand histories themselves to cover things up, or c) have attempted to hide facts to pay less money out in refunds.

On that note, we have no doubt that there is way more information about the scandal that’s out there. And we want that information to come out. We want Haley to keep digging. We want Travis Makar to release everything he has. We will do nothing to stand in the way of this information from coming out. From my perspective, I don’t think the company will ever be able to 100% totally move forward until it does. And I, as well as management, personally hope it does.



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2. UB management has never attempted to control what I say or when I say it. In fact, just the opposite. It’s one of the things I respect most about them. They have allowed me to make my own decisions. Maybe it’s not the best PR for them all the time, but I can make my own mistakes.

3. Regardless of your opinion of UB right now, please keep in mind that “making mistakes” (be it with the initial response to the scandal or even the ridiculous security lapse that happened last year) is far different then “helping cheaters cheat.” None of our pros were ever connected to the scandal. None of our management was part of the scandal. But we keep taking all the bullets, despite many people who were likely connected to either being a super-user, which is just disgusting and something that will forever be a black eye for us, or cover-up rarely get flamed to the level we do. It’s your right to do it. I understand why you do it, but we’re not the cheaters. We were not involved in the scandal in any way. Nor was our current management.

4. And yes, I believe that the current ownership is different from the former ownership. I have also heard constant claims that this is not so. Again, any proof of these claims would be great to see if it exists. I don’t believe that it does. Of course, I am putting a great deal of faith in the current owners/management with making these claims, but that’s what most of us do with our employers, and I am doing the same. Obviously if this were ever to be proven to be not true, I would feel duped.

 

Overall, Sebok’s “apology” did not sit well with a lot of people. Aguiar went on and posted “I notice you still refuse to address the inclusion of my girlfriend in this. It’s a huge point to just ignore in such a lengthy thought out response.” Which leads one to believe that Aguiar did not believe what Sebok had posted. Adding more fuel to the fire, Sebok went on to post the following: ““Jon, I am perfectly happy to let everyone know why I brought up your gf. That’s your call. You know exactly why I mentioned her. That’s your business… Also wanted to add that by posting our private message publicly, you have brought her into this publicly, not me. I feel very badly for any stress that it may have caused her.”

My first reaction, Joe Sebok is (and to some “still”) a complete ass. I doubt that he spent a lot of time “chatting with friends” and “a ton of deliberation”. One could argue that Sebok is on a mission called “Damage Control”. If I were high on the food chain with UB, I know what I would be doing.  Now lets dissect this “apology”. It is pleasing to know that Joe is taking responsibility that his message was “overly aggressive and out of line. For that I apologize”. BULLSHIT! The majority of people who come right out to make an apology like this is only sorry that it got out and how much of an asshole it makes him/her out to be.

When I signed on with UB almost two years ago, I saw it as an opportunity to help turn a company around.”  How the hell are you going to turn something around? One would think that you would have to be “somebody” and have the proper skills to move in a positive direction; I do not see this as being positive, do you?

I’ve been called everything from naive to a douche for thinking I could help change the company and the perception there”  You got that right!

I still feel like I have done my best, and am still making positive steps with UB. I have put a ton of work into those efforts” Really? You have done your best, as in you cannot do anything more? Are those positive steps that he is taking involve 12 steps? If you have put in a ton of work into those efforts; but yet at the same time you say that you have done your best. That makes as much sense as tits on a bore.

Sometimes I act or say things in reaction that I wish I could take back” Well when you are one of the faces of a company you have to react and say things that will not come back to hurt you and the company. It really isn’t rocket science.

And given the way Aguiar was bashing UB with the Prahlad/Ike incident, even though it had nothing to do with UB, I reacted quickly and made a bad decision.” I had to read this several times. This makes no sense what so ever. Aguiar was bashing UB but it had nothing to do with UB? I think I lost a few brain cells after this one.

Now, did I view that DM to Jon as private? Absolutely. Do I think taking a private message and asking for a public apology is strange? That’s irrelevant. I shouldn’t have sent it, plain and simple. Jon made his decisions after that, and over 700+ posts later, here we are.” Mr. Sebok, have you not learned by reading or watching TV. Anyone (that is in the public eye) that sends text messages, videos etc… will eventually come out for all to read/see. It’s sad but it is part of the society that we live in now. How is it irrelevant? Oh wait; you’re just laying the damage control on all of us pretty thick.

All I’ll add to this is that in no way, shape, or form was that message an attempt to blackmail Jon or threaten him, and I don’t believe he thought that legitimately for one second. I was not telling him I was literally going to expose skeletons in his closet, albeit my choice of words was obviously dreadful in that regard. I just wanted him to chill out on UB and realize that the company had nothing to do with the current disagreement between Prahlad/Ike. I just chose a bad way of expressing that.” LOL this is total bullshit too. I think he did tell him “literally” with that text message. There are other ways to tell him to chill out. Maybe next time try telling him “Chill Out man”

With Travis Makar going on Donkdown (which, despite my personal feelings about them, I think they did a good job handling) and Haley’s most recent blog on Greg Pierson, there’s been a lot of new chatter on UB.” No shit! A lot of chatter? I think there is A LOT more than chattering going on. The shit is definitely going to be hitting the fan.

UB management has never attempted to control what I say or when I say it. In fact, just the opposite. It’s one of the things I respect most about them. They have allowed me to make my own decisions. Maybe it’s not the best PR for them all the time, but I can make my own mistakes.” Shame on UB, they should know better.

Regardless of your opinion of UB right now, please keep in mind that “making mistakes” (be it with the initial response to the scandal or even the ridiculous security lapse that happened last year) is far different then “helping cheaters cheat.” None of our pros were ever connected to the scandal. None of our management was part of the scandal. But we keep taking all the bullets, despite many people who were likely connected to either being a super-user, which is just disgusting and something that will forever be a black eye for us, or cover-up rarely get flamed to the level we do. It’s your right to do it. I understand why you do it, but we’re not the cheaters. We were not involved in the scandal in any way. Nor was our current management.” None of our pros are connected; so is he saying that it was pros that were around during that timeframe? When you say “We were not involved In the scandal in any way” is he saying (more or less) that the old “UB crew” were part of it? Perhaps Joe Sebok has shed a little extra light into the mess of the UB scandal. Something to ponder isn’t it.

 

The “Silent Spade”

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One Response to “Joe Sebok Responds to Blackmailing Accusations”

  1. FramCire says:

    This author should identify himself/herself. Otherwise heavy opinion pieces like this are suspect and honestly not appropriate. I am not a pro, I know no one involved, and my opinion is that of a recreational player.

    I rarely, if ever play AP anymore. I find Seebok to be arrogant based on what I have seen on TV.

    However, his apology seemed acceptable. Yes, it was politically worded however, what else did you expect? I do think that making private messages public is not something you do. Either ignore it, press charges, or go to the source and deal with it. Making it public only brings your girlfriend into public scrutiny and fuels the fire. The funny thing is that you cant make Seebok and AP look any worse than they already do but you can make them more sympathetic.

    With this said, Seebok made a stupid decision. Apologized. Call it over!!!

    ““And given the way Aguiar was bashing UB with the Prahlad/Ike incident, even though it had nothing to do with UB, I reacted quickly and made a bad decision.” I had to read this several times. This makes no sense what so ever. Aguiar was bashing UB but it had nothing to do with UB? I think I lost a few brain cells after this one.”

    This quote is a good example. It was obvious to those who read it that Seebok was suggesting that the Phalad incident had nothing to do with UB but that Aguiar was bashing UB anyway. It is only hard to understand to someone who has a predisposition against UB/Seebok or someone who doesn’t have brain cells to spare. I am guessing the former is the case as the overall piece shows signs of higher intelligence.

    Folks, this kind of stuff just makes Poker (online and live) look bad. Take your battles to a middle man who you both trust in instances like this. Bashing one another is only going to fuel the fires of those who try to take poker down. You all don’t need this right now, doesn’t effect me all that much.

    Just some friendly advice.

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