An insider looks at Sports Watch

What the so-called sports monitors are really about

The tendency of what are euphemistically called the “sports monitors” to advertise themselves as more than they are had always sparked my open criticism. Ruth Glasgow of the Sports Monitor was forever advertising with phrases like “there is no reason for an honest sports service not to monitor”, or “I’m sure there are honest services that don’t monitor (a concession specifically added for my benefit), the problem is knowing honest from dishonest,” and last the extortionate “you can induce more services to monitor by refusing to deal with them unless they are monitored.” Not coincidentally, monitoring costs money which goes directly into Ruth Glasgow’s pocket. The reason for an honest service NOT to monitor is quite simply that it costs money, and for the many honest services that are on the edge of break-even or even below water in their businesses, the money it costs is not small. The crooks, of course, can afford it easily in most cases. The “sports monitors” are a combination of advertising media and advertising agency for the services. In other words, they are public relations and promotional firms for their client sports services, pure and simple. They make no bones about their role to the sports services themselves, it is only the public that these firms attempt to fool by presenting a mask as consumer-oriented organizations.

If the “sports monitors” are policemen for the industry, they are policemen who receive all their income from those they are supposed to be policing. It is the sports industry equivalent of assigning the wolf to guard the chicken house against his brother wolves, with whom he shares dinner. Only gamblers, it seems, would be so stupid as to consider such a situation acceptable. The job of the “sports monitoring firm” is to assure the public, in many cases falsely, that the client service is in the fraternity of honest guys. When the Las Vegas Sports News went into the “monitoring” business this year they made the mistake of trumpeting publicly to handicappers in huge ads in the newspaper:

ATTENTION: ALL SPORTS HANDICAPPING SERVICES

JOIN THE LVSN MONITORING SERVICE TODAY AND

IMMEDIATELY GAIN THE BENEFITS OF

* INCREASED CALL VOLUME

* BE RANKED AMONG THE “HONEST GUYS” IN THE INDUSTRY

* GAIN NATIONAL EXPOSURE & RECOGNITION

* RECEIVE FREE AD SPACE

On the facing page the Las Vegas Sporting News advertised for its own tout service claiming percentages that no one has ever been observed to obtain, but which exist regularly in the imaginations of many touts and naive gamblers. So much for being “ranked among the ‘honest guys’.” What is remarkable about the Las Vegas Sporting News ad is not its content, but rather the fact that they placed the ad where it could be read by the public. The same content appears in private mailings to potential sports service clients from both Sports Watch and Sports Monitor. The “monitoring firm” sales pitch to prospective client services emphasizes advertising value and increased revenue, and gaining instantaneous honesty with no background check worth mentioning. The difference between the sales pitches of Sports Watch and Sports Monitor and that of Las Vegas Sports News lies solely in the fact that Sports Watch and Sports Monitor are run by people sufficiently clever and experienced in the art of deceiving the public that they never allow themselves to appear publicly as anything other than consumer organizations. Unlike LVSN, the only face that Sports Watch and Sports Monitor present to the public is that of a sort of Consumer Reports or Consumer’s Union specializing in the sports service industry. Strangely, their naive public ad campaign for handicappers probably makes the Las Vegas Sporting News the most honest of the “monitors”. At least the wolf is proclaiming himself rather than hiding under a sheepskin wrapper.

As I stated, I had been openly critical of all of the above. It is not that I don’t believe in advertising and public relations, I believe in it in spades. I often said that the reason I was not “monitored” is because I chose to spend my advertising dollars elsewhere. My objection was to the attempts by the monitors to pretend to be something they were not. It is more dangerous to pretend to be a policeman than for there to be no police at all. If there are no police, then I know I must stand guard over and protect my own home. If someone pretends they will guard my house for me and fails to do so, they have placed me in a position in which I am easy prey for the criminal because I have let down my own guard. If it turns out that the phony policeman is paid by the criminal to get me into such a vulnerable position, the false policeman becomes far more dangerous than the criminal himself. It is because of my repeated statements in that regard that nothing surprised me more than the phone ringing one day with the owner/operator of Sports Watch , one Jack Stewart, inviting me into the tent. “Why don’t you get monitored?” he asked. I was incredulous. They were extending the olive branch and inviting me into the fraternity. It was probably not all that unselfish. The fraternity was tired of my standing outside the tent pissing in, and probably decided to invite me in hoping thereby that I would turn around and start pissing out. Not an unclever idea, but hardly a generous enough offer to put me on their side and establish me in their camp.

It occurred to me that it was about time I started to open new avenues of advertising, and it also occurred to me that I could learn more from the inside than from the outside. Only from the inside could I know the extent of any dishonesty, the extent of any cover-ups and the extent of any actual monitoring. Perhaps I had been wrong all along, and despite the obvious conflicts of interest and promotional exercises, things were run with a view to accurate monitoring and helping the public. The invitation was more than I could resist accepting. Little did they suspect that once they had me inside the tent, instead of turning and pissing out, I would be so impolite as too use my position to take better aim at the occupants.

The View from Inside

During all the years that I criticized the monitors from the outside, I myself was always subject to the criticism, invalid though it may be, that I was taking shots for the sake of sour grapes. I was bombarded by the defense that my critiques were the product of being too afraid or too dishonest to be monitored and so I took it upon myself to find fault. Lest anyone think that to be true, it should be known that I have been a participant in Pro Football Weekly’s National Handicappers Bowl for two years, gaining a top 5 finish this year, and a number one finish in the college bowl division last year. I was monitored through football at Sports Watch and placed in the top 5 in college. I was in the Sportsform Ultimate Handicapping Challenge in the NFL this year and finished third in units won and in percentage. When I left Sports Watch in February I was far ahead of the pack in College basketball with a documented record of 102-71, 59%, on 173 selections and a return on investment of 14% of all the money that crossed the table and +$2400 for a mere $100 wagered on each selection. The record kept by Sports Watch is, however, so inaccurate that I hate to take credit for any of it, although I must stress that many more of my winners than my losers disappeared or for various reasons were never counted. What follows is the story of how I came to leave Sports Watch and what I discovered while I was there.

The Initiation (Our Hero Gets ripped off Immediately)

First came my background check. After all, I was about to be inducted into the ranks of the guys that never lie, the “holier than thou” fraternity, the guys who Jack Stewart or Ruth Glasgow are ready to go to the ends of the earth to proclaim as, “honest or they wouldn’t be with Sports Watch,” as Jack Stewart wrote to me in his next to last letter. At Sports Watch I must admit that this background check is far more stringent than at Sports Monitor.

At Sports Monitor, unless you’ve been blackballed by the inside ruling clique of those sports service owners that number themselves among the long time friends of Ruth Glasgow, the entire check of background consists of “can you pay the fees?” The blackballed group? Any known consensus service operators, any known high pressure boiler-room operators (although those guys never seek to be monitored anyway and the only ones Ruth Glasgow seems to know, from my conversations with her, are Jack Price and Stu Feiner), and those who have become persona non grata by angering the ruling clique in one way or another. When it comes to boiler-room operators, however, there seems to be some distinction made, once again, for friends of the ruling clique. Mike Lee’s apparent recent affiliation with the high pressure boiler room sales operation of Jim Feist probably has not affected his “most favored handicapper” status at Sports Monitor.

At Sports Watch, Jack Stewart goes a bit further. In his zeal to weed out the dishonest and scurrilous, Jack Stewart does ask you to eliminate yourself if you advertise falsely. I’ve often wondered if this “background check by confession” tack has ever worked. You then must meet the one truly important qualification at Sports Watch. Incredible as it seems, the most important qualification for admittance to the ranks of the “honest holier than thou sports services”, the one qualification that cannot under any circumstances be waived, is that you actually be in business as a Sports Service. Wisely, until you can prove that, Sports Watch will not so much as tell you how much monitoring costs. I say wisely because for the purposes of Sports Watch and Sports Monitor deception of the public is crucial. It would not due to have too many potential sports service users know that the “monitors” reason for existence is to charge the services they supposedly police for promotion and a veneer of false honesty. To this end, Jack Stewart and Sports Watch go to great lengths to be sure that sign up and promotional material never falls into the hands of anyone who is not a verified sports service. Jack Stewart will never tell you this, however. The public excuse for the “in business check” is put forward as a protection for the monitored services because individuals, who don’t have the time constraints of dealing with clients, would gain an unfair advantage and garner too many top place finishes from the real services (I never was sure why this excuse was thought to sound better than simply saying, “we don’t want the public to know we’re a fraud.”). You can prove that you are a true “in business” sports service by any one of the following means: (1) producing a business license; or (2) producing a tax ID number, or (3) having been monitored previously by Sports Monitor or National Handicapper’s Bowl (this means of proof was illogical since neither Sports Monitor nor National Handicapper’s Bowl require entrants to be “in business”, but being previously monitored does serve to ensure that you know what it’s about and you can keep your mouth shut even if you are not “in the business”); or (4) being introduced by another Sports Watch monitored handicapper (the best way of coming in).

Once you’ve passed the “self confession” and “business check” you’re ready to become “counted among the honest guys” if your wallet can afford it. The most stringent background check in the entire “sports monitoring” industry is over. Overnight honesty!

I now anxiously awaited my introduction letter. When it came, I was not disappointed. It was all I had hoped. Not one single monitoring rule. No Code of Ethics. One half the page told me the payments to be made by me to the person who was supposed to be policing me. The fees consisted of what was called a listing fee of $325, and then another $150 per sport for each sport you wanted to “monitor” and an extra optional $100 per sport for the monitoring of best bets. Not cheap. The total cost for monitoring all three sports (football, baskets and bases) with best bets was $1075! A good reason for the smaller honest service not to monitor. The second half of the letter consisted of three paragraphs. The first told me about how my standings in the “monitoring” would be publicized in both THE HANDICAPPER newspaper and something called THE VEGAS SPORTING EDGE. The letter enthused over the full color and 50 lb. paper that Vegas Sporting Edge would be printed in and on. It promised me “better coverage than ever before.” After two paragraphs of this sort of stuff, the last paragraph informed me that to be monitored I would submit plays myself either by fax or voice mail. This discussion of monitoring of plays was completed in three sentences and was such a vague after-thought that it did not even provide the phone numbers to call to drop off my selections. At no time did the letter ask, nor at any time during my six months with Sports Watch was I ever requested to submit a late phone service number for monitoring or for so much as the threat of a spot check. The promotion of advertising and publicity rather than monitoring, and the lack of any actual monitoring of selections, all this I expected. It’s the same everywhere. The “monitors” are paid public relations firms and nothing more. I was not, however, prepared to be ripped off.

I was told that for an additional fee (more money!) I could enter something called the Sports Watch Contest. Interesting, since the “monitoring” involved no actual monitoring at all, and therefore amounted to nothing more than a contest itself. The additional fee Contest, however, did give me yet another bite of the apple with as many different plays and opposite sides as I chose, and the hefty entry fee included my picture in a full page advertisement every week in The Handicapper, together with one contest pick and my office and comp phone or 900 number. I declined. I was then told that for an additional fee I could obtain a small classified type ad on the Sports Watch results page to be published in both The Handicapper and the wonderful full color 50 lb. paper Vegas Sporting Edge. I had never heard of the Vegas Sporting Edge, but I was assured that the reason was that it was new and distributed only in Las Vegas. I decided that the several hundred extra dollars I was paying for inclusion in the Handicapper was worth the money and anything produced by the other paper was gravy, so I sent the check.

Naturally, those that line the pockets of Jack Stewart and Sports Watch the most get favored treatment. I can’t prove that those who pay more or have paid longer have fewer of their winning selections disappear into space, but the more you pay, the more influence you appear to have over Sports Watch. I’ll get into it in detail later in this article, but suffice it to say that outright lies, opposite siding, and fraudulent advertising barely resulted in mention and did not result in any sanction of any of the “deep pockets” services. Criticism of the truly influential deep pockets guys, even if valid, did not result in any investigation let alone sanction, rather I was threatened with sanction for even dreaming that any of the “big shots” could be guilty of being less than honest. You get the picture, so back to our story.

I began merrily calling my plays into Sports Watch, and I anxiously awaited the Second Week of the season when my ad would appear in the Handicapper. I had gotten off to a quick start. I was #1 overall in college and pro football combined for a good portion of the season, and I pictured the ad with my phone number right on the page showing my results paying great dividends in phone calls. Maybe this advertising through Sports Watch thing wasn’t so bad after all. A copy of the Handicapper came complimentary in my mailbox. There was my ad. A bit small I thought and placed buried in the middle of about 20 such ads from other Sports Watch handicappers, but my record would attract potential clients and cause them to search for my ad and get my phone number. To my dismay, no calls came in. The next week no copy of the Handicapper was in my mailbox. If Jack Stewart had arranged to keep sending it to me, I never would have been the wiser. When the Handicapper never arrived it dawned on me that I had never seen a copy of the Vegas Sporting Edge. I did want to see if my ad placement rotated or changed week to week so I went to my local newsstand and began to thumb through a copy of the Handicapper. There was the full page ad for the Contest with pictures of the ugliest group of handicappers I’d seen since The Sports Bible, but I couldn’t find the Sports Watch standings and my classified. “This is not a library,” the clerk snarled (they do that in NY). I bought the paper and left.

When I arrived home, I hunted through the paper again, definitely no full page ad with my #l football standing and a classified telling the world where to reach me. I called Jack Stewart. “Have you seen the Handicapper?” I asked.

“No,” replied Jack. “Why?”

“The full page ad isn’t in there,” I wailed.

“You mean there’s nothing in there from Sports Watch?” came the response.

“No. The ad with the pictures is there,” I said. “The page with the standings and my classified ad has disappeared. I know it was there last week, they sent me a copy.”

“You’re in New York aren’t you?” asked Jack.

“Yes.”

“Well your ad is only in the Las Vegas edition of the Handicapper, they give it out free in all the casinos.”

Visions of my #1 record and classified ad with built in profit margin for Sports Watch being used to take gum off the shoes of endless tourists danced through my head.

Although it would seem to be the opposite, advertising in Las Vegas is a waste of time and money for any sports service. There are too many things to bet on in Las Vegas. No reason for residents to bet sports unless they know what they’re doing and have the time to do it. The rest of the sports bettors in Las Vegas are tourists. They don’t drag those throw away newspapers home in their luggage. They throw them away. That’s why they’re called “throw aways”. No one decides to search out and send money to a sports service while they’re on vacation, and they can’t call 900 #’s away from home. My ad was not going out to all the subscribers to the Handicapper, nor to all the people around the country who bought it each week on the newsstands. The Handicapper was already a small circulation newspaper. Its freebie distribution in Las Vegas could not contribute more than 10% of that already small circulation, and it was not 1% of the quality customers. The advertising value was the equivalent of ads I could get for a mere $15 of wasted money per week elsewhere, and I had paid considerably more. I swallowed hard and asked, “Can I get a copy of the Vegas Sporting Edge, to see the ad.”

“Actually,” Jack replied matter-of-factly, “that newspaper never published.”

Never published? My mind raced. “I broke my leg and couldn’t get around so the paper never came out,” said Jack, as if that should excuse and explain everything.

I envisioned vast warehouses filled with all those huge rolls of 50 lb. newsprint, and vats of 6 different colors of ink lying waste. A room full of full color printing presses all silent and unused. A payroll full of printers, distributors, writers and reporters on the unemployment line. All stopped dead in their tracks, cut down in their prime, and laid to waste by Jack Stewart’s broken leg. Suddenly my dream faded and a truer vision of Jack Stewart on his mimeo machine printing the Vegas Sporting Edge, stapling a few copies of the great full color 50 lb. newsprint paper together, and running them around in the back of his car to put them next to the unread freebie copies of The Handicapper in the local casinos. Maybe I was lucky he broke his leg. “Do I get a refund?” I asked timidly.

“No, Rob. I put the ad into the Handicapper (Vegas edition) for a few extra weeks to make up for it.”

They must have made the season longer without telling me. The standings page advertisement was to run for the entire length of football monitoring as far as I knew. Where did the few extra weeks come from? I didn’t press the issue. None of the other handicappers seemed to be complaining. I have no idea why they did not complain, except some I’m sure never realized. Perhaps others were afraid to rock the boat and provide Jack Stewart a reason to give the competition a leg up in his “monitoring” contest. Perhaps they did complain but I just never knew. What I did know is that the supposed industry policeman had managed to lull the great muckraker, Rob Crowne, sufficiently to sleep to pick his pocket and take his money under false pretenses. I paid for advertisements which I believed would appear in all editions of the Handicapper, and they did not. I paid for ads that were to appear in a newspaper that does not exist and never did exist, except in the vivid full color 50 lb. descriptions of Jack Stewart’s imagination. I loved dealing with the honest guys (NOT!). Only the deep pockets Contest group got what they paid for. I think about this every time I feel a twinge of guilt for having come into the fraternity tent only to pee on the occupants.

The Monitoring

Having been thus initiated into the ways of my new fraternity brothers and their shaman, Jack Stewart, I proceeded to get on with what they called my “monitoring”. Webster defines “to Monitor” as to watch or check. I soon learned that the only watching or checking that went on had nothing to do with the accuracy of my service’s record.

At no time for the entire period that I was with Sports Watch did anyone watch anything or even threaten to do so. I was never asked for my late phone service telephone numbers, not even for the threat of a spot check. I was given a voice mail number for me to call and told to call each day and leave my plays. There was no actual check to assure that the selections that I left for Sports Watch were accurate or complete.

Jack Stewart did, however, once again go a bit farther than Sports Monitor toward pretending to be concerned with monitoring. He posted everyone’s selections, after the games were completed each day, on a fax-on-demand.. Supposedly you call and obtain the selections and you, the public, could check to be sure that the selections were accurate. Of course, no one except current clients of a service would have any means of knowing the accuracy of the selections given to Sports Watch, and current clients of a service are the least likely to be faxing daily to find out what their service gave out. To make matters worse, Jack Stewart then permitted certain services such as Donn Wagner and Kingpix to opt out of having their selections disclosed. Why those two services were given that special was never disclosed. There were, however, more special privileges at Sports Watch that I’ll discuss later.

You might ask yourself what the advantage might be in giving different selections to your clients and to Sports Watch. Remember, many services simply charge you to flip a coin for you. They will be 50% unless they get lucky. To get lucky you need as many tickets in the raffle as possible. By giving different selections to clients and to Sports Watch, the service can hope to look good someplace. If he gets lucky with clients, they will stay with him. If he loses with clients but gets lucky at Sports Watch, he can proclaim the wonderfulness of his “documented” record to obtain new clients. Of course the poor public never suspects that his record with Sports Watch was never “documented” at all! The creation of more than one record is always beneficial to the sports service, so long as the service is able to pick and choose which record to shout about.

You might also ask yourself why any service would care if their selections were disclosed to the public long after the games are over. Sports Monitor indicates their complete lack of concern for honesty by steadfastly refusing to disclose the selections of any service after the games. One wonders how they can be said to “certify” or “document” selections if no one knows what it is that has been certified. First, the threat that someone will be able to compare the selections disclosed as having been counted with those actually disseminated serves to keep the Monitoring firm honest as well as exert some pressure for honesty on the service (of course actual monitoring, which does not exist, would end the possibility of dishonesty by the services much more effectively). There are many reasons for hiding selections even after the games are completed, and almost none of the reasons are “honest” ones. The service may not want different clients in different clubs to see that the selections in the more expensive club are the same as the selections in the less expensive one. The service may also not clients to see that opposite sides were given out to various groups of clients. In addition, the service need not worry that the selections monitored or their ratings will be discovered to be different from those given to clients. That the “monitors” would either refuse to disclose or allow services to opt out of disclosing the selections monitored indicates nothing more than the real desire and purpose of the “monitors”, which is to aid the services in the defrauding of the public by creating a false impression of honesty which does not exist.

When it came to being monitored, it did not take long for me to have another rude awakening. It came on the first Saturday with a full slate of college football games. Many services sell dozens of games every Saturday by selecting five that they label “late phone service” and marketing the rest through 900 numbers, or different clubs, or under different names. I do none of that. I select the games I like and I give them all to my club members. They get my highest rated selections and my lowest. This is how I run things. It is one of the advantages of being one of my clients. It is something which differentiates me from many other services, and when I pay to be “monitored” it is the job of the monitor to report on my results, not to control those results. There we were on the first big Saturday of the year. It was a great day from a handicapping standpoint. In the afternoon we had a full 7 selections and we chalked up a 5-2! Many services would have thought that from a marketing standpoint it wasn’t going to get any better, and passes in the evening. That is not the way we do things. That night we had another 5 selections, for a total of 12 for the day. That night our games were 4-1! A terrific 9-3 day. Jack Stewart was on the phone immediately. “You can’t have twelve selections,” Jack said.

“What do you mean I can’t have 12?” I asked incredulously. “Its your job to keep track of my selections,” I said, “not tell me which games to give out or how many I can have.”

“We don’t monitor more than 11 selections, sides and totals included in the colleges.” Jack replied, “if you can’t stick to that then you’ll have to drop out. You can fax for our monitoring rules.”

This was the first I had heard of any monitoring rules. I called the fax number. There they were. The monitoring rules. Nothing about honesty or ethics, just two rules. You were allowed to have 11 side plays in the NFL, 11 more totals plays in the NFL, but only 11 plays in the colleges, sides and totals combined. The second rule said that selections had to be called in to Sports Watch before the scheduled start of the game, no matter when the game actually started. Any selections in excess of 11 and any games phoned in late would not count. I wondered how a monitor could not count selections. I pictured the nurse hooking a woman up to fetal monitor and telling her that if she didn’t lie straight they wouldn’t her contractions wouldn’t count. Does the largest of all monitors, the IRS, tell you how much money you can earn, and say that if you disobey and earn more they won’t count it? Further, how can selections ever be late to Sports Watch. It is the job of Sports Watch to document what my clients received. What matters is what time my clients got the selections, not what time they were logged in by Sports Watch. The monitoring concept is simple. The monitor should report how a client can expect to do in my service. If my clients got a play an hour before the game and I neglected to call it in to Sports Watch, it should still count, but if I called a game in to Sports Watch an hour before the start and my clients did not receive until after the start then it should not count no matter when Sports Watch got it. This simple concept that what and when mattered only with regard to clients and not with regard to Sports Watch seemed to be more than Jack Stewart could understand! The penalty for repeated violations of late plays or having more than 11 selections was to be discontinued at Sports Watch without a refund.

It all made no sense. Particularly the part about monitoring a total of 22 selections on a Sunday (11 sides and 11 totals) when there were only 26 bettable propositions on the board, but monitoring only 11 in total on Saturday when there could be 100 or more bettable propositions. I wanted to know why. The reason was easy. Eleven was the number of plays that, given the size of Jack’s handwriting, could fit on Jack’s 8 ½ by 11 monitoring sheet. On Sunday two monitoring sheets were kept. one for sides and one for totals. Thus a total of 22 selections were allowed. On Saturdays only one sheet was kept. I realized that I was being told that my clients could not receive one of their winning selections. They had to be 3-1 instead of 4-1 with the final winning play of the day because Jack Stewart could not write smaller and he did not want to waste paper. I would not, of course, change my service to fit the monitor. That would be like the tail wagging the dog. So from that day forward we created two sets of plays just like all the other services and the “monitoring” of selections became as inaccurate as it was for all those other guys.

The Cover-up

The job of the “monitors” is to obtain and keep track of the selections of sports services and report to the public on the results. As I’ve reported they are not performing that simple task competently. Nevertheless, they claim to the public to be far more than mere accountants for the sports services. They falsely represent themselves as policemen for the industry, and attempt to vouch for the honesty of the services which pay them. It is the fraudulent nature of these latter claims that make the “Monitors” really dangerous. The “monitors” claim to police the industry and vouch for honesty because that, along with creating publicity is what the monitors are paid by the Sports Services to do. If you were to start a Consumer Reports type monitoring firm, merely reporting honestly on the results of a Sports Service, you would get no one within the Sports Service industry to provide you with their selections, let alone pay you to keep a record. The Sports Services pay the monitors for public relations. Haven’t you ever wondered why some services are signed on with more than one monitor. If the monitors are honest, how many does it take keep a record? The Sports Service is not interested in an accurate record. Most of them will do their best to make the record as inaccurate as possible. The Sports Services are interested in creating an image as a winner and an image of honesty, and they are interested in getting their name and that image out to the public.

If the Sports Services could not trust the “monitors” to do their best to make the service look good, the services would never give their selections to the monitoring firms. The average service cannot win. They go to great lengths to hide that fact from the public. I recently disclosed on my comp phone that if you add together all the selections in basketball of all the Sports Watch handicappers for the first half of the season, and subtracted vigorish, only three services were in the plus column, and the highest positive return was plus 3 games. All the rest were below water by up to 41 games. They could not even claim that they made up for negative numbers by winning their big plays, as only three again were positive in Best Bets, and of those three one had gone 1-0 and another 2-1. The rest had severely negative Best Bet records which in most cases were worse than their overall negative records. That doesn’t sound like something the average Sports Service would want truly and accurately documented, does it? As a result, the job of the monitor is to create a false record and obscure the truth for the paying clients. This job they do to perfection. They also create a public image of honesty for their client services. This image of honesty helps to hide the truth about the records and the truth about some extremely shady if not downright fraudulent advertising and business practices. It is the great cover-up! The majority of the public believes that the monitoring firms are watching for them, and so they let their guard down and fail to question when it comes to “monitored” sports services. If questions as to record or honesty do arise, the service need only answer by saying “I’m monitored” to dispel any problems.

I knew that the services did their best to subdivide records so that losing services could appear to be winning, and to get rid of losing records half way through the season and give everyone a fresh start, “all the better to fool the public my dear.” I was also aware that Jack Stewart spent a great deal of time proclaiming the honesty of the services with Sports Watch. I understood all that. Cover-up the record for the majority of losers and publicize the clients in a favorable light is the job description for Jack Stewart and Ruth Glasgow. I was not, however, prepared for the fact that the supposed industry policeman at Sports Watch, Jack Stewart, would do nothing when dishonesty came right up and smacked him in the puss. I was not ready for the fact that the author of the pamphlet Liar Liar Picks on Fire would go out of his way and even lie to aid the dishonest service to continue to fool the public. I should have suspected, however.
thedailyspread.com | January 13th, 1999

– – – – – – – – – – – –About the writer
Rob Crowne is a professional level sports bettor and owner of the Crowne Club. His free pick line was the impetus for the creation of our site.

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