select

Not So Sunny At The Sunny Group!

(Also see Sunny Group press release and email to GoneGambling Members.)

For several years GoneGambling and the Sunny Group of Casinos (Casino Fortune, Mapau Casino, Miami Beach Casino and Sunny Sportsbook.) have had a good and trusting business relationship. Over recent weeks that relationship has soured to the extent that GoneGambling has now refused to accept any further advertising from the Sunny Group of Casinos. This decision has not been taken lightly. It will in fact cost GoneGambling in excess of $7,000 worth of advertising revenue each and every month.

GoneGambling and the Sunny Group of Casinos more or less grew up together. For GoneGambling it was truly wonderful to be able to promote an ethical group of casinos who would bend over backwards to make certain that GoneGambling members were looked after in a special way. For the Sunny Group, it made good business sense to be associated with a site who had a wonderful image for being honest and ethical, and also made them plenty of money. Let's face it, if GoneGambling was not making money for the Sunny Group, they would not have continued advertising year after year after year - non stop!

What Went Wrong?

In August, 2003, GoneGambling was approached by C. M. Booth of www.bet2gamble.com. C. M. Booth knew of the good working relationship that GoneGambling had with the Sunny Group. He was hoping that GoneGambling could help him resolve a long running dispute he had with the Sunny Group.

C. M. Booth wrote the following in an email to GoneGambling: "Sunny Sportsbook stole from us by taking copyrighted material from our site, without our permission and without providing us any compensation, and used that material in a full page ad in the September 2002 edition and a couple of other editions of Casino Times News run by Sting."

NEW link: Proof that Sunny Group staff used the material from www.bet2gamble.com without asking permission. After already being contacted by C. M. Booth and told that he was not happy that they had used it, they used it AGAIN!

Note: www.bet2gamble.com does not hold Casino Times News responsible for the adverts placed by Sunny Group.

The above were very serious allegations. If the allegations were true, we could sympathise with C. M. Booth because we had recently gone through a similar circumstance on the GoneGambling site. In our situation, a rogue Webmaster had decided that it was quite OK to lift the templates for the GoneGambling site and use them as his own. After a few days and several emails, he finally saw reason, but we had had to waste much valuable time and important newsletter space on achieving justice.

We were sure that this was just a misunderstanding between C. M. Booth and the Sunny Group and that it could be rectified to everyone's satisfaction in a short space of time.

In a phone conversation with GoneGambling, C. M. Booth had stated that he was originally prepared to let the matter drop if the Sunny Group advertised on his site for one month for $500. Yes, he was prepared to even put the Sunny Group banners up as well as allow them to use his page as an advert. To GoneGambling this seemed more than a fair proposal and we wondered why the Sunny Group didn't just take up the offer in the first place to make the whole matter go away. C. M. Booth informed us that for almost twelve months all the emails he sent to the Sunny Group met with a wall of silence. He said that in the end he also had a lawyer contact the Sunny Group but the lawyer also met with a wall of silence. However, there are two sides to every story, so we forwarded the original emails from C. M. Booth to the Sunny Group and requested that a dialogue be started.

The Sunny Group WALL OF SILENCE

In forwarding the email from C. M. Booth to the Sunny Group, the last thing GoneGambling expected was to also meet a wall of silence. For over three years GoneGambling had had a wonderful working relationship with both the management and staff of the Sunny Group, so we were very disappointed when we didn't receive a response to our email within a few days. After all, we did copy our email to four high ranking Sunny Group people.

Several days after our first email we again emailed the Sunny Group and again met with a wall of silence. This apparent lack of response or caring about the grievances of "one little guy" (who was doing his best to provide Internet gamblers with a great information site), was of more than just a small concern to us. If the Sunny Group believed it was OK to walk all over an individual Webmaster and take his work to use for their own profit, what hope will there be for an online gambler who approaches them with a legitimate grievance?

GoneGambling was not about to take the word of just one Webmaster over a company who we had dealt with for years. We did our best to get the Sunny Group to tell us their side of the story. As you will see from copies of our emails below, we tried time and time again to resolve this issue. Frankly, we explained the situation to the management of the Sunny Group in words and phrases that could leave no doubt as to what the end result would be if they did not respond. All GoneGambling ever wanted to do was get a dialogue going between the Sunny Group and C. M. Booth. Once dialogue had started we were sure the matter would be resolved and we could all get back to business. Sadly, every passing day without a response from the Sunny Group, gave an increasing appearance of guilt tempered with complete arrogance.

If the Sunny Group would not respond to GoneGambling after all the years we have worked together, then we would have to believe that there'd little or no hope for anyone else to get a response should they have a problem or grievance. In good conscience GoneGambling can no longer accept advertising from the Sunny Group and promote their casinos to online gamblers. From our recent experience with them and their lack of response to the emails we forwarded to them, we feel the Sunny Group is just too risky for GoneGambling to deal with. As it turns out, the problem that C. M. Booth came to us with was just the trigger for all that has happened since. When the Sunny Group turned their back on GoneGambling and would not respond to our emails, this matter affected every single GoneGambling member who was depositing money with the Sunny Group on the recommendation of GoneGambling.

There is little enough trust in this world as it is, and online it's even harder to have people trust you. The only thing GoneGambling has going for it is its word. If it was discovered by our members that we were aware of the allegations made by C. M. Booth, and didn't at least try and have it sorted out or get to the bottom of it, we would have broken the trust that many of our members have placed in us over the years.

Our members do come first. This has nothing to do with money. Sure, we need casinos paying for advertising and promotion on our site to keep it viable. But we will not tolerate any casino or group of casinos buying their way onto our site with the thought in mind that their payment allows them to provide poor or no service or responses to ourselves or our members when we contact them.

A Warning To All Online Casinos

GoneGambling has no relationship with C. M. Booth other than he came to us asking for help with an alleged problem he had with the Sunny Group. In truth, he is the Webmaster of a site that is competing with GoneGambling for business from casinos and players alike. C. M. Booth informed us that he had already approached several other bigger gambling sites or portals and none of them wanted to know him or help with his problem. In trying to help an opposition business resolve a problem with the Sunny Group, we knew that we had nothing to gain and were risking much.

C. M. Booth came to us with a problem that could have been resolved agreeably almost a year ago for as little as $500. And if the Sunny Group had talked about it it may not have even cost them that to resolve the matter. Instead of the problem being resolved in a sensible and professional manner, C. M. Booth is still aggrieved and missing his $500. This fiasco has caused GoneGambling to risk losing advertising revenue of over $7,000 each month. We're sure that the Sunny Group will be losing much, much more than that as a result of the bad publicity surrounding this event.

C. M. Booth can stand the loss of his $500. Although it hurts, GoneGambling can stand the loss of over $7,000 each month until we find some replacement casinos who will at least respond to us if we come to them with a problem. But, if there is a backlash from online gamblers in response to this story getting out, can the Sunny Group stand the loss of hundreds of thousands of dollars over the next year or more? It would appear to the casual reader that the Sunny Group has valued their entire business at less than $500. Who wants to deposit money with a casino who only places a value of less than $500 on their good name?

Let this be a warning to all online casinos - GoneGambling will not tolerate any casino (GoneGambling Sponsors or advertisers.) pulling on their army boots to walk rough shod over anyone who has a grievance. Be responsive and work with us on any problems. At least tell us in response to our first email that you don't agree with what the grievance or complaint is about. The attitude displayed by the Sunny Group regarding this matter doesn't do anything for the industry that we are all so very much a part of, and trying to earn a living from.

Why Back GoneGambling Into A Corner?

Why would the Sunny Group back GoneGambling into a corner where GoneGambling couldn't get out without doing irreparable damage to the Sunny Group itself? To us, this makes no business sense at all. All online gamblers need to be concerned about dealing with a group of casinos who for the sake of $500 or less, and not answering several very important emails, will throw away the reputation they have taken years to build.

In our opinion the Sunny Group made a judgement call on this matter and they clearly got it wrong. Perhaps they did not expect GoneGambling to approach them about another Webmaster who had a grievance? And perhaps they did not expect GoneGambling to risk an income of over $7,000 each month on a matter of principal? In all the dealings the Sunny Group has had with GoneGambling, we believed they'd use better judgement by not ignoring our emails.

Unfortunately for GoneGambling members, the Sunny Group hung on right to the very end and used up all the time available to both themselves and GoneGambling. Right until the very end GoneGambling was hoping this matter would be resolved and that our members who were depositing with the Sunny Casinos to play for bonus deposits for the next thirty days, would not be disappointed. Apparently, the Sunny Group made their decision that they would not resolve this issue long before GoneGambling was aware of it. As a result, we feel it was up to Sunny to come clean and announce that GoneGambling members should know that their recent deposits would not be good for any bonuses on the GoneGambling site.

Instead of using the available time to talk to GoneGambling (from when they received our first email). The Sunny Group backed us into a corner where we have had to refuse to accept advertising from them, as we could not trust them to simply reply to our emails. The Sunny Group left us no time to manoeuvre or let our members know that they should not be depositing with Casino Fortune, Mapau Casino or Miami Beach Casino in an effort to win bonuses for the next thirty days. You be the judge. Are those the actions of a responsible casino group?

The Sunny Group was well aware that GoneGambling would need to explain their absence from the GoneGambling site? Did they think that their wall of silence would rub off on GoneGambling and we would just not bother explaining why the Sunny Group were missing in action?

The absence of the Sunny Group from the GoneGambling site could possibly look to other casinos and potential advertisers as if the advertising on the GoneGambling site wasn't worth going on with. Did the Sunny Group think GoneGambling would leave it looking like that when the truth was the opposite?

To GoneGambling, none of this made any sense! Who in their right minds would want to risk their hard earned money with a group of casinos who do things that make no business sense?    

As will be revealed when you read the correspondence below from the Sunny Group, they are apparently not the ones pulling the strings. (Yes, they did eventually respond to our many emails. However, as you will see, resolving the problems we had put to them seems to be the least of their concerns.) It appears that the Sunny Group is hiding behind their lawyer and letting him run the business for them.

Over the years, GoneGambling has earned hundreds of thousands of dollars for the Sunny Group of casinos. By listening to the business advise and suggestions from GoneGambling, the Sunny Group has done nothing but profit and prosper. And yet, in this instance, rather than take the advice of GoneGambling and settling this matter in an honest, ethical and responsible way, the Sunny Group has opted to listen to their lawyer. It would appear that the advise they were given (see one of their emails below) was to not respond to any correspondence on the accusations made by C. M. Booth.

Not responding to several emails from a site who you are relying on to bring in business for you every day, is ridiculous. No response could only serve to make GoneGambling jumpy about dealing with the Sunny Group. 

The Sunny Group won't see their lawyer throwing away $7,000 of his own money each month just on a matter of principal to see that the right thing is done. Instead, he'll probably bill them thousands for his advise. According to an email from the Sunny Group, they are relying on their lawyers advice. To GoneGambling it appears that this advise is what has resulted in this whole fiasco blowing up like it has.

For arguments sake, let's just say that the Sunny Group were to claim that they wanted to stop advertising with GoneGambling. Here's what they should have done:

#1. When GoneGambling first contacted the Sunny Group about the the problem C. M. Booth brought to us, Sunny should have immediately responded and worked out a settlement of some kind with C. M. Booth. In the first few emails below from the Sunny Group, you'll note that they don't deny lifting a page from www.bet2gamble.com to use as an advert promoting their Sportsbook. If GoneGambling had been accused of doing the same thing, our first reaction would have been to deny it outright and very vocally if indeed we had not done what we were being accused of. Settling and making the dispute a non-event would have been the smart thing to do.

#2. Once Sunny had settled with C. M. Booth (even if they didn't agree with what he was claiming) they would have then had almost a month of advertising left on the GoneGambling site. They could have then let GoneGambling know that they would not be advertising any further after the end of August. GoneGambling could have let its members know that the Sunny Group was taking a break from advertising, and wished the Sunny Group well and thanked them for all their years of support. Everyone would have been happy and neither business or no GoneGambling members would have needed to suffer a loss.

Instead of doing the above, what did the Sunny Group do? They sought legal advise! Of course this page is now a result of the advise they sought. To ordinary, honest, decent online gamblers, this whole mess just won't make any sense, so don't try and work it out. Just make sure you choose very carefully who you deposit your gambling dollars with. In our experience (as is documented here), should you have a dispute with Sunny Group Casinos, and you have a dispute with them, you'll be lucky to get a response. And if you do get a response, will it be from their lawyer?

The Email Campaign

----- Original Message -----
From: C.M. Booth
To: Emailus
Sent: Tuesday, August 05, 2003 11:57 AM
Subject: Re: Dispute Mediation

Hi John,

Thank you for helping us mediate this. We really appreciate it, and won't forget it. OK, the following below are the details of the whole fiasco.

OK, here is the deal. Sunny Sportsbook stole from us by taking copyrighted material from our site, without our permission and without providing us any compensation, and used that material in a full page ad in the September 2002 edition and a couple of other editions of Casino Times News run by Sting. They took the Details page** we had of their's listed in our site at the time and used it as a full page ad on page 58 of the magazine, and they didn't even bother to give us credit on that page either. I have attached the ad that Sunny used in its entirety.

** Here is an example of a Details page in our directory: http://www.bet2gamble.com/Directory/rid_53.php (NOTE: The reason I'm not using Sunny Sportsbook's Details page is because we removed their site along with all of Sunny's casinos from our directory at the time we found out about this.)

So why do I think Sunny stole from us? Lots of reasons including email correspondence from them that all but admits what they did. I have forwarded our correspondence with Nicole and Anand to you where they admit to taking our property without our permission or without giving us any credit in the ad they ran.

OK, so what was our relationship with Sunny? We wrote a two part home page feature about them about a year ago and in turn got 10 monthly US$30 free accounts which we could hand out to players. There was no contract or I/O as it was a purely informal agreement. We were also an affiliate of theirs, but that was the extent of our relationship. We never told them that they could use our copyrighted material for anything, and they never asked more importantly. I wanted to let you know of our relationship with Sunny because we have nothing to hide at all in our dealings with them.

So what does Booth Entertainment (Bet2Gamble.com) want from Sunny for using our copyrighted material without permission? We want a licensing fee of US$5,000 along with an official statement from them acknowledging that they:

1) Used our copyrighted material without our permission
2) Will not use our copyrighted material again without our permission

If Sunny refuses to satisfactorily compensate us, than we will be forced to go to the public with our evidence and let them decide whether or not Sunny stole from us in addition to possible legal action because we cannot allow them or others to steal from us unabated.

John, I hope you can broker a satisfactory resolution to this for several reasons. Most importantly, we can not let sites use our copyrighted property unabated. Secondly, matters like this are bad for the online gambling industry if they go public, and we would much prefer to settle this privately. Thirdly, we didn't want to blindside you by going public with this before contacting you, however, we will be forced to go public if you can't broker a satisfactory resolution.

Sincerely,
C.M.

----- Original Message -----
From: Emailus
To: anand
Cc: gbooth; natasha; jwallis; nicole
Sent: Tuesday, August 05, 2003 2:48 PM
Subject: Fw: Dispute Mediation

Hi Anand,

Please see below. Is there any possibility of resolving this dispute? I fear that this is going to become very messy if it goes public. A mess right now is something that none of us need. :-(

Please respond ASAP.

Regards,

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com

---- Original Message -----
From: Emailus
To: anand
Cc: gbooth; natasha; jwallis; nicole
Sent: Saturday, August 09, 2003 12:25 PM
Subject: Fw: Dispute Mediation

Hi Anand or anyone. Can someone please respond?

I'm sure the problem below can be resolved. I'm happy to help in any way I can. However, I need a response first. This problem is not going to go away by ignoring it.

Please understand the position this places me in. I've never yet had a problem in resolving a player dispute or concern with the Sunny Group. You guys are great when it comes to that. But here we have someone in business who feels he has a genuine grievance in that the Sunny Group used his work and website layout in promotion of one of their own casinos, and they didn't even ask if it was OK or give him a credit in the advert.

When this blows up and goes public - which I'm sure it will - how am I supposed to convince players that the Sunny Group are always fair and responsible to deal with, when posts on the Net about this issue will be saying the exact opposite?

Please work with me here guys. Taking someone else's work and using it for promotion of your own business, and then putting up a wall of silence when asked to come to the table and talk about it, just smacks of an arrogance and big company attitude that will not place the Sunny Casinos in a favourable light with players.

Here's a suggestion. How about doing a mailing to your list of players promoting www.Bet2Gamble.com as a responsible site and place to see important casino information? I'm sure C. M. Booth would be happy to at least look at something along those lines. Why not make this a joint promotion where you both benefit, instead of C. M. Booth getting no acknowledgment or compensation that his work was worthy of being used as a full page magazine advert, and Sunny getting a heap of bad publicity from posts around the Net.

I have spoken to C. M. Booth on the phone. He tells me that the only reason he has not "blown a gasket" yet, and gone public with this issue, is because he feels it would overall be bad for the industry. He believes it's something that no one in the industry needs at this time. However, the guy is just about out of patience. He has decided that his being responsible and not making this public yet, is being seen by Sunny Group as a sign that he won't ever reveal what went on. Your wall of silence is only forcing him to do you harm - he now has nothing to lose because he has decided he has nothing to gain by remaining silent any longer. Why would you back someone into a corner like that? It makes no business sense.

Please respond.

Regards,

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com 

----- Original Message -----
From: Emailus
To: anand
Cc: natasha; jwallis; nicole; gbooth
Sent: Saturday, August 16, 2003 7:15 AM
Subject: Fw: Dispute Mediation

Hi Anand or anyone who receives this email.

Can someone please respond to my previous email? See below.

This is my third email to you on this subject and your lack of response is very disturbing to say the least.

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com

---- Original Message -----
From: Emailus
To: jwallis
Cc: anand; nicole; natasha; gbooth; Debbee
Sent: Tuesday, August 19, 2003 6:03 PM
Subject: Fw: Dispute Mediation

Attention John Wallis.

John,

It is with regret that I write to you today. I'm writing regarding the matter below. This is my fourth email to the Sunny Group on this subject and I can see that I'm getting no where. I haven't yet received a response from anyone at the Sunny Group to any of my previous emails.

I was hoping that I wouldn't be placed in this position and that I could at least get a dialogue going between C. M. Booth and the Sunny Group. As the Sunny Group won't even respond on this matter, it concerns me that they would not respond if I came to them with a legitimate players complaint.

GoneGambling is a site built on trust and I can't in good conscience promote a Casino Group who have shaken my faith in them as much as the Sunny Group has.

The Sunny Group advertising on the GoneGambling site expires on the 31st August, 2003. Unless the matter with C. M. Booth is resolved by then, GoneGambling will not renew its promotion of the Sunny Group. We will of course have to inform all 8,000 GoneGambling members of why the Sunny Group is no longer on the GoneGambling site.

I am saddened that things have had to come to this. After dealing with the Sunny Group for so many years I thought that we had a better relationship than this.

Regards,

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com 

At Last, An Email From The Sunny Group

It wasn't what we expected but it was an email...

----- Original Message -----
From: Rawle
To: cashsaladslotplayer
Sent: Thursday, August 21, 2003 11:17 PM
Subject: RE: Free Account Winner!

Hello John

Can you please remove me from all gonegambling emails and put this email address instead vitra@xxxxxx

Regards

Rawle

GoneGambling Responds

----- Original Message -----
From: Cash Salad Slot
To: Rawle
Cc: vitra; Debbee; gbooth
Sent: Friday, August 22, 2003 8:40 AM
Subject: Re: Free Account Winner!

Hi Rawle,

As requested I have removed your email address from having the winning games emails sent to it - albeit a temporary measure as the Sunny Casinos will not be in the games on the GoneGambling site after the 31st August, 2003.

In receiving your email I am pleased to find that there are still signs of life at the Sunny Group. I would appreciate it if you would please forward this email to the person who is supposed to be driving the Sunny Group bus. They seem to have left the wheel and the bus is on a very dangerous road.

See below for copies of my previous emails to the Sunny Group management.

Regards,

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com

Attention John Wallis.

John,

It is with regret that I write to you today. I'm writing regarding the matter below. This is my fourth email to the Sunny Group on this subject and I can see that I'm getting no where. I haven't yet received a response from anyone at the Sunny Group to any of my previous emails.

I was hoping that I wouldn't be placed in this position and that I could at least get a dialogue going between C. M. Booth and the Sunny Group. As the Sunny Group won't even respond on this matter, it concerns me that they would not respond if I came to them with a legitimate players complaint.

GoneGambling is a site built on trust and I can't in good conscience promote a Casino Group who have shaken my faith in them as much as the Sunny Group has.

The Sunny Group advertising on the GoneGambling site expires on the 31st August, 2003. Unless the matter with C. M. Booth is resolved by then, GoneGambling will not renew its promotion of the Sunny Group. We will of course have to inform all 8,000 GoneGambling members of why the Sunny Group is no longer on the GoneGambling site.

I am saddened that things have had to come to this. After dealing with the Sunny Group for so many years I thought that we had a better relationship than this.

Regards,

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com 

Finally, A Response From Sunny About The Problem

----- Original Message -----
From: jwallis
To: 'Emailus'
Cc: anand; natasha; 'Debbee'; Hugh Marshall
Sent: Friday, August 22, 2003 7:29 PM
Subject: RE: Dispute Mediation

Dear John,

I have emailed you on this already. I have tried to call you but the number I have is turned to a fax machine.

It is very sad that after so many years of advertising with GoneGambling, and seeing so many comments from happy GG customers about Mapau that you would suddenly change your opinion about our integrity on the word of one person. I can assure you Sunny Group has little to offer the world except our honesty and integrity and we will go to all ends to guard both.

Mr.Booth has made several statements to people, including yourself, about us. We wait for him to bring us to a court of law or for him to become libelous at which time we will bring him to a court. You seem to have a relationship with him which is very good as we are looking for his address. Can you provide it please?

Our lawyers have also advised us not to get into any discussion with anyone about this in case it should be viewed that we are the ones trying to give Mr.Booth a bad name. We have had many years relationship with you and your members. We are pleased to have brought them some entertainment and to have profited from the relationship. It is your right to stop us advertising with you and we are left with nothing but happy memories and goodwill towards you and GoneGambling. We wish you well and will continue to speak highly about you.

Best regards

John

Well, What Did C. M. Booth Have To Say To That?

----- Original Message -----
From: C.M. Booth
To: Emailus
Sent: Monday, August 25, 2003 5:55 PM
Subject: Re: Dispute Mediation

Hi John,

WOW! Unreal. I'm speechless. Where to begin. OK, let's take a look at this statement:

"... Our lawyers have also advised us not to get into any discussion with anyone about this in case it should be viewed that we are the ones trying to give Mr.Booth a bad name. ..."

He is hiding behind legalese. The reason he won't discuss it is because he knows they are dead wrong. What other reason would he have for not discussing it with you??? Notice how he doesn't even deny any of the events at all? That's because he knows what they did, and knows everything you sent to him about this on my behalf is true. The only truthful thing he could say about this is that Sunny did it. Anything else would be a lie.

"... We wait for him to bring us to a court of law or for him to become libelous at which time we will bring him to a court. ..."

They need to be reminded obviously that the truth is an ironclad defence against libel charges. That's just more smoke they are blowing. Hell, I wish they would take us to court in the U.S. for libel, which they would lose in a big way and quickly, because then we could counter sue them back into the Stone Age for intellectual property theft among other things. If they had a presence in the U.S. at all, we would have already sued them, but they don't unfortunately.

"... You seem to have a relationship with him which is very good as we are looking for his address. Can you provide it please? ...."

Man oh man this just gets better. They already have our lawyers contact information, and have had it for almost a year now. Our lawyer sent their lawyer an official letter from us stating our position and what compensation we wanted. We know it got to them because it was sent by certified mail. He is trying to make it look like we never contacted their lawyer Hugh Marshall.

It doesn't look this is going to get resolved at all, so we are going to have to go public. When it does, I guarantee they will do 1 of 2 things. They will either try and lie their asses off, in which case I have more than enough proof to shoot down their lies, or they will do what they did with you and say their lawyer has told them not to comment and that they will be taking legal action against us, which they won't because they don't have a case at all.

They are nothing but unrepentant thieves imo.

I wish they had settled this earlier so it wouldn't have to come to this. I can't even fathom how hard it must be to lose an advertiser that has been with you for so long. One thing I'm going to do is put in a strong word for you with our advertisers in hopes that they might advertise with you to help lessen the blow. Again, I really appreciate your efforts and WONT EVER FORGET IT. That's a promise.

Sincerely,
C.M.

GoneGambling Points Out

Readers should note that GoneGambling was not aware of the name of the lawyer being used by the Sunny Group. However, in the most recent email to us from the Sunny Group the email was copied to a Hugh Marshall. In the response to that email, C. M. Booth in part writes: "... He is trying to make it look like we never contacted their lawyer Hugh Marshall. ..."

How did C. M. Booth know that Hugh Marshall was the Sunny Group lawyer unless he had previously had reason to correspond with him? It's ludicrous for the Sunny Group to claim that they don't have the contact details for C. M. Booth. If their lawyer has lost them they can always do a search on the Whois to find out everything they need to know about C. M. Booth, including that his first name is George!

Shame on you Sunny Group. Your email appears to be very flawed and that only makes the case of C. M. Booth appear even stronger. GoneGambling still doesn't know who is right or wrong in this matter, but if Sunny Group had proof to back up their claims, it would be nice for them to put it up and save us continuing on with this ridiculous fiasco. You didn't even resend the email you claim you first sent to GoneGambling as proof that you had indeed tried to email us.

GoneGambling Tries Again To Resolve This

----- Original Message -----
From: John Abbott
To: jwallis
Sent: Monday, August 25, 2003 11:00 PM
Subject: Fw: Dispute Mediation

Hi John,

First off I want you to know that I have not copied anyone on this email. I'm hoping that reason will prevail and that this mess can be sorted out without any more time being wasted on it and without any of the Sunny Casinos receiving bad press.

This has gotten beyond the original problem that C. M. Booth came to us with. More than anything, this issue of the Sunny Group not responding to our emails has shaken us to the core. I know you claim to have responded to one of our emails but I'm afraid no response was received.

There is no way that GoneGambling would have backed the Sunny Group into a corner like the Sunny Group has done to us. If it was your lawyer who advised you to ignore our emails and advice on this matter, then you need to get yourself a new lawyer. He gave you bad advice and I hope he has deep pockets because it's him you'll want to go after when the deposits with the Sunny Casinos start to dry up.

In truth, I can't see this matter being resolved because you're either being given bad advise or you're just being stubborn about it. I'm already positioning GoneGambling for the mess as you will see by clicking on the following link:

http://www.gonegambling.com/casino-review-not-recommended-sunny-group-problem/index.html

You may get back to me with any changes you want made to the page should you find any glaring inaccuracies. I think you'll find we have stated the whole sorry story as it has unfolded and not strayed too far from the facts.

At this stage you are the only person to receive the above link. I would hope that I don't have to make the link public but you have left me no choice. In the past four years I have had to put five similar pages up on the Net in an effort to make the offending casinos realise just how the story would look in print to online gamblers. Four of the five casinos settled the disputes without me having to make the pages live. The fifth casino allowed the page to go live for 45 minutes before they contacted me in a panic stating that they had just resolved the issues.

As with the other five casinos I'll give you the same warning. Should you threaten legal action of any kind as a result of what's on the page, it will go live immediately. I hope I'm being very clear on this point.

You have left GoneGambling with no room to move. You won't settle with C. M. Booth. GoneGambling can't accept advertising from the Sunny Group of Casinos because we can't trust the group to respond to our emails and concerns. GoneGambling members need to be told why the Sunny Group will no longer be on the site as of the 1st September, 2003. Why would you put GoneGambling in that position? It makes no sense and the Sunny Group has the most to lose from you backing us into a corner. I'm sorry, but I just don't understand it. It makes no sense to me to tear down by your own hand what it has taken years to build.

I don't for one minute believe that the following will come to fruition, but it's my final attempt to save the Sunny Group from itself.

To make this matter go away the following needs to happen:

#1. Sunny Group must come to some agreement with C. M. Booth within the next 48 hours. I don't care what the agreement is, but the matter must be settled.

#2. To avoid the page going live, the Sunny Group will need to renew its advertising with GoneGambling for the next three months. In that time GoneGambling will be able to shift them out of the games without any GoneGambling members losing out as a result of it.

Note: Point #2 is not a threat to get you to advertise again. The Sunny Group created this mess and this is just one of the costs of extracting all concerned parties with the least harm being done to anyone. If the Sunny Group advertising ends on the 31st August, 2003, the page explaining all the problems with the Sunny Group MUST go live. It can't be helped. GoneGambling members need to be told the reasons why their deposits for the last week of this month will not make them eligible for bonuses for the month of September.

#3. The Sunny Group needs to guarantee GoneGambling that they will not ignore our concerns or emails over the next three months. If the Sunny Group do not guarantee to respond to GoneGambling the advertising will not be renewed.

Getting everyone out of this mess is as simple as #1, #2, #3. What's it going to be?

I have laid out the problem and I have laid out the solution. You are not backed into a corner, unlike GoneGambling.

You are the only person to see the above link, and you are the only person receiving this email. I don't care what spin you want to put on it John. You can tell anyone who asks that you had a change of heart and decided to settle with C. M. Booth. I just hope that you opt to resolve this matter so that we can all get back to earning some money and doing what we do best on the Net.

Regards,

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com

----- Original Message -----
From: jwallis
To: 'John Abbott'
Cc: 'Anand' ; Hugh Marshall ; 'Natasha'
Sent: Tuesday, August 26, 2003 11:26 PM
Subject: RE: Dispute Mediation

Dear John,

Our wish is to go to court with Mr.Booth as we did not steal anything from him. We are even more upset because he is breaking the long relationship that you and Sunny have had. We have proof that we paid for any of his material that we might have used and this proof is for a court of law. Wherever in the U.S. that Mr.Booth decides to file charges we will submit to that jurisdiction.

I was very sad to read your article. I don’t think I have ever read such a negative piece about our company. It makes me very, very sad. Our board will be meeting to discuss this later today. I am sure they will all be equally saddened.

Natasha has a letter from one of your staff saying that you are away and our banners cannot be changed until you return. I hope you are enjoying your holiday and that on your return will be able to change the banners to the ones we request as it is a special free offer to GoneGambling members to celebrate our anniversary. The present banners should not be used and we would be grateful if you could take them down and replace with the new ones. If this is not possible while you are away please put our campaign on hold until you return and put the new banners up for the time missed.

Best regards

John

----- Original Message -----
From: Emailus
To: jwallis
Cc: anand; hcm; natasha; Debbee
Sent: Tuesday, August 26, 2003 9:59 PM
Subject: Re: Dispute Mediation

Hi John,

Thanks for responding. As much as you are saddened by the page I have had to put up, I'm as frustrated and wild about having to spend time doing it. I would much rather have had this matter settled three weeks ago so that I could now be promoting the free sign up deal for the Sunny Casinos in 'full force' on GoneGambling.

Your 125x125 new banners went up several hours ago and the 168x60 banners went up yesterday. I did return early from my weekend away so the banners went up at the earliest possible opportunity.

Unfortunately, with all that has gone on and all the time I have been forced to spend on this dispute, I have not had time to do any additional promotion for the Sunny Group, or in fact the inclination to do any extra. You are back to getting the basic promotion you have paid for without the trimmings. We are honoring the advertising deal we have with the Sunny Group through until the 31st August, 2003.

This email will be just another one that is added to the page about the Sunny Group, so I need to clear up a few points raised in your email to me.

#1. "Our wish is to go to court with Mr.Booth"

This will not happen and you know it won't. Apart from the fact that Judge Judy has a full agenda, the amount of money in question does not warrant it going that far. You are using this as just another excuse to avoid resolving this issue. Give online gamblers a little credit, most of them will see exactly what you are trying to do.

Anyway, why should C. M. Booth go to court? He's already got the Sunny Casinos by the balls and you played right into his hands. When this story gets out, it will cost the Sunny Group hundreds of thousands of dollars in lost deposits and players walking away from the casinos. C. M. Booth couldn't get a result like that in any court in the world. And he won't have had to leave his home to achieve that result!

The Sunny Group can try and sue C. M. Booth, GoneGambling and any other site that picks up this story and runs with it, but they will never recover 10% of what they will lose in revenue from online gamblers. You don't have to admit to anything, but for heavens sake, don't throw your business away like this. Settle it and make it go away.

#2. "We did not steal anything from him."

Fine. Why didn't you say that in response to my first email? Why did you hide behind your wall of silence? It could only make you look guilty, so why do it?

Why don't you put up the proof if you have it? The Sunny Group are as welcome as C. M. Booth to provide information for the page that is going up on the GoneGambling site. We'll let the court of public opinion decide who is right and who is wrong. It has to be that way because I'm damned if I can get you to do anything to make the problem go away. So far, every thing the Sunny Group has done regarding this matter has been geared towards making certain that it does go public. I hope you guys know what you are doing, because frankly, I don't have a clue what you are doing!

#3. "We are even more upset because he is breaking the long relationship that you and Sunny have had."

That is not an accurate statement. C. M. Booth came to GoneGambling with a problem which we forwarded to the Sunny Group. The Sunny Group then broke the trusting relationship they had with GoneGambling by putting up a wall of silence. The Sunny Group only had to respond to our first or even the second of our emails and put their side of the issue. If they had done that, GoneGambling would have remained comfortable in dealing with them.

If the Sunny Group was even half as saddened by what has happened as you claim, one would have hoped that you would have said to GoneGambling that you would settle the matter with C. M. Booth just to keep the good relationship with GoneGambling. You could have settled the matter without admitting to, or agreeing with, any of the claims made by C. M. Booth. You could have done it as a goodwill gesture for GoneGambling.

#4. "I don’t think I have ever read such a negative piece about our company."

So why let anyone else read it when you have the opportunity to make sure it never goes live?

Thousands of online gamblers will be reading this very page. They truly will be wondering why the Sunny Group forced the page to go live when they could have negotiated a settlement that would have made sure no one saw it.

Work with GoneGambling on this. Show us that the trust we once placed in the Sunny Group was not a misplaced trust. Settle this matter in a manner that will not harm your business or ours.

#5. "Our board will be meeting to discuss this later today. I am sure they will all be equally saddened."

Don't waste valuable time being sad about something you have the power to fix.

Your email to me, although a response, has still left me with no option other than to make the page about the Sunny Group live on the 1st September, 2003. Our members will need to be told why the Sunny Group is no longer on the site, and we will leave them in no doubt as to what the whole story is.

Please read the page I have put up once more and let me know of anything that is not accurate or factual. I'll then review your list and if appropriate make the changes to the page. I can't be any fairer than that. You are forcing me to make the page live, but at least I'm giving you the opportunity to state your side of things.

You must realise the position you have placed GoneGambling in. The Sunny Group has been on our site for so many years now that they are almost a fixture. When they disappear from the site overnight, what will other casinos and casino groups think? They will think that the Sunny Group pulled out of advertising with GoneGambling when in fact the opposite is the case. GoneGambling can not leave any doubt in anyone's mind as to why the Sunny Group has left the site so abruptly. It's a matter of survival. At least we are thinking of how to survive this mess. It appears to us that the Sunny Group is determined to fall on their sword instead of negotiating a workable deal for all concerned.

I don't know who is right and who is wrong in this matter of C. M. Booth verses the Sunny Group. I do know that everything the Sunny Group has done since we first approached them about this has made them appear guilty. They have certainly shaken our trust in them. You can't blame C. M. Booth for not responding to the emails we sent you. You guys have to take that responsibility on yourselves. If you had just responded to our first email I know that we would not be at this stage now.

Please let me know ASAP if the board decides to resolve this issue? We are counting down the hours now so we don't have any time to waste. Make me an offer that I can put to C. M. Booth? Let's please make this thing go away.

Regards,

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com

----- Original Message -----
From: jwallis
To: emailus@gonegambling.com
Cc: Hugh Marshall; Anand Rajkumar; 'Natasha'; 'Nalini'; 'Leon L'; lisa; 'Ingrid'; 'Geoff Atkinson'; ericm; jwallis
Sent: Wednesday, August 27, 2003 3:32 PM

Dear Mr.Abbott,

Our Board of Director met today. The Board is very distressed at your accusations, statements and proposed public pronouncements (casinoproblems-sunny). We regard your proposed publication (casinoproblems-sunny) as slanderous, biased and false in many instances.

Could you kindly tell us in what capacity you have decided to sit in judgment on Sunny Group and what qualifications you hold to judge or arbitrate any dispute. The Sunny Group believes in arbitration and mediation and willingly submits to qualified arbitrators.

The Sunny Group has spent many years building a name that is held in high repute worldwide. Our name has great value and any attacks upon this good name will be met with all the resources available to us in law.

Sincerely Yours

J.Wallis

CEO Sunny Group of Companies
Sunny House
10 Macoya Road
Tunapuna
Trinidad
Tel:+1 868 663 6677
Fax+1 868 625 1146

----- Original Message -----
From: Emailus
To: jwallis
Cc: hcm; anand; natasha; Debbee
Sent: Wednesday, August 27, 2003 3:06 PM
Subject: Re:

Dear John,

You win. The Sunny Group obviously wants the page about their complete and utter mismanagement of this whole fiasco to go live more than I wanted the problem resolved.

I will be adding this and your other emails to the page and it will go live within 18 hours. I would have made it live immediately but I have other work to complete beforehand.

I will now remove the Sunny Group banners from the GoneGambling site and all other links and references that I can find. Please provide your wiring information by return email and we will refund the advertising already paid for the last few days of this month.

#1. "Slanderous, biased and false in many instances."

Point those instances out as I have already requested you to do on two previous occasions. The Sunny Group are using nothing but bully boy tactics and have provided no proof about anything they have stated. In fact, in many instances your words and actions were the complete opposites.

#2. Could you kindly tell us in what capacity you have decided to sit in judgment on Sunny Group and what qualifications you hold to judge or arbitrate any dispute.

I did not decide to sit in judgement on the Sunny Group. One day you may actually say something that is accurate.

I forwarded a problem to you that I had been made aware of, in spite of the fact that I would have much rather not known anything about it at all. As a courtesy, I expected a response from the Sunny Group to my email. You did not respond, and in my book that shows that the Sunny Group are arrogant and that they believe themselves to be above the little guys. The news for you is that gamblers are little guys too!

When I first forwarded the email from C. M. Booth to the Sunny Group, I had no intention of arbitrating the dispute. In fact I wrote: "Please see below. Is there any possibility of resolving this dispute? I fear that this is going to become very messy if it goes public. A mess right now is something that none of us need. :-( Please respond ASAP."

I could see four weeks ago that this was going to become a mess? The Sunny Group management obviously wasn't looking into the same crystal ball that I was.

You would like to know what my qualifications are to judge or arbitrate any dispute? That's a bizarre question to ask of someone who you have allowed to promote your casinos and say pretty much anything he liked about them for over three years!

While I was saying good things about the Sunny Group of Casinos my qualifications to do so were never called into question by you. What has changed now? If I was qualified enough to promote the Sunny Group for over three years, I would think that from your point of view, you couldn't find a better person to arbitrate on your behalf. Surely I would have had your best interests at heart?

It is a proven fact that I did have your best interests at heart as time after time after time I have tried to stop the Sunny Group from running off the rails in this matter and doing harm to their own reputation. Just re-read the emails I have already sent you regarding this matter. The online gamblers who are reading this page will have worked this out by reading the page just once.

#3. "The Sunny Group believes in arbitration and mediation and willingly submits to qualified arbitrators."

What a load of crap. As this page proves to everyone, the Sunny Group believes they can do and say anything they like and that they don't have to answer to anyone.

#4. "The Sunny Group has spent many years building a name that is held in high repute worldwide."

Here again you have been caught out. You are saying one thing, but your actions reveal that you want the opposite to happen. You say you have spent years building a good name and then in a matter of four weeks your actions cause all you have worked for to be jeopardised.

Unfortunately for the Sunny Group, GoneGambling also has a name that is held in high repute worldwide. And in fact, it was GoneGambling and GoneGambling members who created much of the image that the Sunny Group has today. The Sunny Group in its arrogance has apparently forgotten that.

#5. "Our name has great value and any attacks upon this good name will be met with all the resources available to us in law."

I wondered how long it would be before you dusted that one off and wheeled it out. I warned you that threats of legal action would result in this page going live immediately. I still have work to do on the page but it will now go live at my earliest convenience.

You are more than welcome to try and use the law to your advantage. That apparently appears to be your tool of choice and is your excuse for not having to deal with anyone about anything in a reasonable and constructive manner. It's important that Gamblers take note of this. It reveals a lot about who and what the people behind the Sunny Group are really like.

GoneGambling on the other hand will inform our 8,000 members that the Sunny Group, through not responding to our emails and requests for dialogue, is not a place that GoneGambling can recommend at this time or any time into the foreseeable future. You can take C. M. Booth and his problem out of the equation. This is now all about the Sunny Group not responding to GoneGambling when a response was deserved. Shame on you.

We will be advising our members to view this page and see for themselves how hopeless it is trying to negotiate anything with the Sunny Group for anyone who has a grievance. Information and the truth about how impossible the Sunny Group has been to deal with is the tool of our choice. GoneGambling sees your inaction and uncaring attitude on this whole matter to be the root of everything that has brought us to this point.

We also see your threat of legal action as a direct attack upon GoneGambling itself and the value it has to our many thousands of members. Your threat of legal action is a threat to take away a site that has become so much a part of each of our members lives. I'm sure you'll be hearing from many of them as they tell you exactly what they think about this whole fiasco.

Regards,

John Abbott

GoneGambling - Your gambling adventure starts here...
http://www.gonegambling.com

The Final Word

Unfortunately we never got to the truth of who was right or who was wrong in the dispute between the Sunny Group and C. M. Booth. The Sunny Groups refusal to respond to our initial emails took C. M. Booth and his problem pretty much out of the equation. The Sunny Group made this an issue of trust between themselves and GoneGambling. We can not recommend a casino group who will not do us the common curtesy to respond to emails and questions in a timely and professional manner.

It appears, that the Sunny Group, although touting and proclaiming that their name is of great value to them, have valued that same name at under $500. Readers can decide for themselves. Apparently, settling with C. M. Booth or even responsibly responding to several important emails from GoneGambling in a timely manner, was too much for the Sunny Group to pay to retain what they claim to be a 'good' and valuable name. Does this make any sense to you?

Should this matter ever reach the courts, GoneGambling will produce this page and correspondence from the Sunny Group as proof that the Sunny Group themselves have valued their 'good' name at under $500. Once again, the Sunny Group appear to be saying one thing, and doing the opposite. How can they have a good name if they won't even pay $500 or less to keep that good name? It just makes no sense.

In truth, the Sunny Group didn't even have to pay out $500 or admit any wrong doing. As you have already read, GoneGambling proposed that the Sunny Group do a mailing and joint promotion with C. M. Booth. This would have cost them nothing at all, but it appears it was still too much for the Sunny Group to pay to keep what they considered to be a 'good' name.

If the above story is too much for you to understand or believe, and you are concerned, we advise you to contact the Sunny Group and ask them direct. They may have a plausible reason for acting the way they have. And for some reason known only to them, they decided not to tell GoneGambling what it was.

I for one will be closing my casino accounts with them.

If a problem now arises between any GoneGambling member and the Sunny Group, please do not come to GoneGambling about it. As you can see from the above, we've already been through 'negotiations' with the Sunny Group on behalf of an aggrieved person once, and we don't ever want to go through a similar scenario with Sunny again.

GoneGambling did our best to stop things coming to this and the Sunny Group led us a merry dance. It appears the Sunny Group knew long before GoneGambling did that they would not settle this dispute. And all that time they were still accepting deposits of $50 or more from GoneGambling members in the full knowledge that as of the 1st September, 2003, they would not be paying out any bonuses on those deposits.

If you intend contacting the Sunny Group about any of this, please copy GoneGambling on your emails to them. It will allow us to judge what the true feeling is in the online gambling world when a story like this is told.

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