The lead article in The Big Money today is a devastating smackdown of a CEO I’ve been tracking for several years now, Patrick Byrne of Overstock.com.
The article points up one of the hazards of business journalism today: companies that push back hard, sometimes with aggressive and illegal tactics, against investigative journalism. As writer Roddy Boyd points out, Byrne takes such tactics to new extremes.
True to form, Byrne tried to preempt the Boyd article, which included serious allegations of sales tax evasion, with an attacking blog post. But by so doing, Byrne has, again, found himself in legal jeopardy. You can’t selectively release market sensitive information, in this case concerning an impending negative article in the press.