Oh my. And DKFoolish changed his log-in name and had his posting record purged.
The Ontario Securities Commission (OSA)..
See what thet say about agoracom
Staff of the Ontario Securities Commission (the “Commission”) make the following allegations:
1. This proceeding relates to fraudulent on-line posting activity by Agoracom Investor Relations Corp. (“AIRC”) and Agora International Enterprises Corp. (“AIEC”) (collectively “Agoracom”), an on-line investment relations firm, and its management, George Tsiolis (“Tsiolis”) and Apostolis Kondakos, a.k.a. Paul Kondakos (“Kondakos”) (collectively the “Respondents”) in breach of the Securities Act, R.S.O. 1990, c.S.5, as amended (the “Act”) and in a manner that was contrary to the public interest.
2. Staff allege that the Respondents’ course of conduct spanned from at least September 1, 2006 to July 31, 2009 (the “Material Time”).
II. THE RESPONDENTS
A. The Corporate Respondents
3. None of the corporate respondents were registered with the Commission in any capacity during the Material Time.
4. AIRC is an Ontario company incorporated on February 12, 2007. AIRC employs Agoracom representatives and contracts with clients to provide investor relations services.
III. FRAUDULENT POSTINGS BY AGORACOM MANAGEMENT AND REPRESENTATIVES
11. According to their website (www.agoracom.com), Agoracom “caters to the IR and marketing needs of small and micro cap public companies trading on the TSX [and] TSX Venture…”. Agoracom offers pricing models for its clients which incorporate a monthly fee and stock options equalling the greater of 250,000 shares or 0.5% of a company’s fully diluted outstanding share total at current prices.
12. Agoracom’s online content includes webcasts, podcasts, and blogs. Perusal of www.agoracom.com is free and open to the public. Visitors are directed to client and non-client issuer “hubs” created and maintained by Agoracom. Among the features available on a specific company’s hub is a discussion forum, relating to the issuers’ securities.
13. Agoracom’s representatives serviced the client hubs by moderating their discussion forums and posting information and news to the forums. In order to post comments on the discussion forums, users are required to create a username and provide an e-mail address.
14. Tsiolis and Kondakos required their representatives, as part of their daily responsibilities, to post anonymously to the client forums using aliases. To post messages anonymously, the representatives created fictitious usernames and posed as investors blending in with other users, investors and interested persons. Representatives had between 40-50 aliases (some had up to 200) and were required to make a requisite number of posts per hub per day or risk having their pay docked. On occasion, Agoracom staff conversed with themselves on the forums using different aliases.
15. Staff alleges that during the Material Time:
- more than 24,000 alias posts were created from within Agoracom on client and non-client hubs;
- more than 670 alias user names were created by representatives of Agoracom and used on client and non-client hubs;
- alias posts originated from Tsiolis’ residence; and
- posts by Agoracom representatives, using their aliases, were promotional and promoted purchasing and/or holding stock.