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Accounting News Roundup: Sam Antar’s Latest Suggestion for KPMG; Is the IRS Getting Soft? Blogging Tips for Accountants | 01.27.10

Open Letter to KPMG: The Ties That Bind and Patrick Byrne With Deep Capture LLC [White Collar Fraud]
Patrick Byrne’s indirect stalking of his critics on Facebook through the Deep Capture website has now been brought to the attention of KPMG, courtesy of Sam Antar:

You must investigate’s (NASDAQ: OSTK) relationship with Deep Capture LLC as part of your continuing audit of the company and take steps to require management to make disclosures under Statement of Financial Accounting Standards No. 57 (SFAS No. 57) governing “Related Party Disclosures.”

At the direction of CEO Patrick Byrne, the company has used Deep Capture’s resources, such as its web site, as a conduit to intimidate, harass, threaten, smear, and pre-text company critics. For example, Deep Capture Managing Partner Judd Bagley violated Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities and deceptively posed as “Larry Bergman” in an effort to gather personal information and spy on ‘s and Patrick Byrne’s critics, including me (See Item 3 Safety and Item 4 Registration and Security).

Altogether, Judd Bagley posted on the names of 7,483 “Facebook friends” of Patrick Byrne’s critics and that list included spouses, minor children, and other people that have nothing to do with, Patrick Byrne, or Byrne’s delusional short selling conspiracy theories.

IRS Plans New Disclosures on Uncertain Tax Positions [Compliance Week]
The IRS, in a surprise move, is now requesting more information from corporate taxpayers when they take uncertain tax positions. Now before you start belly-aching, Doug Shulman would like everyone to know that he could have been a lot harder on you:

“We could have asked for more – a lot more – but chose not to,” Shulman said. “We believe we have crafted a proposal that gives us the information we need to do our job without trying to get in the heads of taxpayers as to the strengths and weaknesses of their positions.”

That almost sounds like an apology, Doug. Are you getting soft on us?

Building a Blog Following [Blogging Suits]
Yours truly did his best to give some advice to the budding accounting bloggers out there over at Blogging Suits:

Despite the reaction of strangers, the content and purpose of your blog is yours to decide and there are certain techniques that can be utilized that will keep your readers engaged and coming back (no matter how “boring” a subject might seem):

Blog regularly – For any blog to be successful, regular content is paramount. I’m not suggesting that you dedicate your entire day to posting but you should commit to posting to at least twice a week. Long periods without posting will turn readers off and they’ll assume that you’re not serious about keeping them informed.

Don’t get excited, no one is expecting you to keep the schedule we do here at GC. Besides, we have taskmasters walking around that shock us every 20 minutes to keep us going.

Posted in ANR