Thursday May 8,2014 : ONLINE POKER MONEY LAUNDERING OP-ED TAKEN DOWN (Update)
Furore over authorship of article continues.
The row over the alleged unauthorised use of Poker Hall of Famer Dewey Tomko's name in a negative op-ed article in the Press of Atlantic City has continued with fresh denials by anti-online gambling activist Jim Thackston…and the Press of Atlantic City taking down the article.
Writing in the Online Poker Report, journalist Steve Ruddock examined the issue in detail, noting the active involvement in organising the piece of Thackston, who is associated with Sheldon Adelson's Coalition to Stop Internet Gambling.
Thackston claims that he met with Tomko and obtained his permission to use his name, along with that of self-proclaimed poker expert Bill Byers, as co-authors of the article.
However, in exchanges with blogger Nolan Dalla, Tomko has emphatically denied this, and says he is not against online poker legalization, although he does not play online.
Thackston insists that his version is the truth, but he appears to have equivocated in a tweet this week (since taken down) in which he suggested the issue may have been one of "miscommunication and misunderstanding" without expanding on the suggestion.
Thackston's failed and hard-nosed efforts to sell his poker software to major online poker firms was also exposed last week by Rich Muny of the Poker Players Alliance.
Bill Byers, the other "co-author" of the disputed article, has so far kept a low profile on the issue.
The Press of Atlantic City was approached by Byers, who in his letter asking for the op-ed to be published gave contact details for himself and his alleged co-author Tomko.
It is not clear whether The Press of Atlantic City actually contacted Tomko to verify his co-authorship; editorial page editor Jim Perskie told Ruddock: “Tomko says he didn’t write it. We have no way of proving that point either way, so we just took it down.”
In his latest statements (to Ruddock) Thackston continues to deny wrongdoing, and has even claimed:
"I am seeing stories saying I impersonated Dewey Tomko. This is false. The facts are as sent you last night [these were as per his original tweets on the issue asserting that Tomko has given his permission]
"I spoke to Dewey several times over the past few days including today and he said he doesn’t know what his lawyer sent to the paper.
"I hope the truth is told on this."
And so say all involved…Ruddock correctly suggests that for clarity it is now important that Tomko confirms or denies meeting with Thackston on this matter; that he did not give his permission to be named as a co-author for the article written by Byers (and Thackston?); that he was not involved in any way in the writing or compilation of the article; and whether the Press of Atlantic City contacted him to confirm his co-authorship.