Thursday, 31 March 2011

Soap Box Session

Usually I plan my blog posts. Just a scrap of paper with a couple of brief notes outlining what I'm going to yabber on about. But tonight, I'm writing as I think, because quite frankly, today I have been flabbergasted by some of the sheer, downright stupidity of some people. So forgive me if this turns into a bit of a rant...

Services are open to constructive criticism. Whether it be the rail companies, a restaurant or a tipping service, if they do something unethical or treat their customers with a lack of respect, then fair enough, they are fair game. But some of the inane, cowardly, and pathetic comments I see on occasion on forums and in the comments sections of blogs beggar belief. I'm sorry but the "letting off steam" excuse just doesn't wash. It's a cop out. Yes, have a moan about bad luck or a poor run from a tipster and how it's making you pissed off. I've done that myself. Furthermore, if someone detects something in a service that they don't like, perhaps a lack of customer service perhaps, then by all means constructively criticise. But to hide behind an 'anonymous' tag or a made up forum name and do nothing other than just slag a service off - well to me that just shows a bloke with a very small todger.

Just what do these people think they are going to achieve? Do they think for one second that the tipster who is incurring their wrath suddenly thinks, "Hang on a minute. He's right. I'm crap." and that results will then spectacularly improve? Of course that person will probably absolve themselves of all responsibility for the decision made to join that service in the first place. They will be that sort, you see. The last person they will point the finger at for failure is themselves. It will be anybody else's fault than their own that they missed the winners, lowered stakes before a winning run, couldn't get on the bets when released because of other commitments, or some other vague excuse for why they're not doing as well as they anticipated. Gambling successfully is not easy. In fact it's bloody difficult. The level of mental strength required is huge. By refusing to take responsibility for themselves, the sort of people that leave comments that go beyond constructively critical and into the realms of abuse have already shown that they will never, ever, make it.

It's bad enough and wrong to fire abuse at those that run services that are paid for. But to target people who work hard to achieve an edge, and then who make those findings publicly available for FREE, whilst constantly warning that it is all a work in progress and for anyone following not to assume success will come from following, to post abusive comments on other people's blogs about someone doing this...get a life. Seriously, grow up. What is it? Jealousy? Cynicism that has morphed into bitterness? Whatever it is, this desire to see someone fail is unhealthy, counterproductive and ultimately self-defeating.

Before anyone thinks I'm being sanctimonious or holier than thou, let me state that I have openly encouraged people to leave comments on this blog in the belief that the more people with different levels of experience chip in, or pick me up on things that they don't agree with or can offer a different perspective on, then it is to the benefit of everyone. So far, I have not failed to publish any comment made. In fact I have apologised on the blog for something I have written that on reflection I can see is wrong. But I have never, and will never, abuse a service for poor performance. I may make a decision to drop a service due to extended underperformance and I may occasionally profer a criticism of some aspect of a service. To go further than this though is wasted energy. Why concentrate on the negative when time is better spent trying to get decisions right that will positively impact your performance as a gambler moving forward?

So far, the likes of Andy, Mark, Alan, Skeeve and others have been tremendous. They have added something to the blog and I'm sure this is a huge reason as to why the readership has been steadily growing. But if anyone is thinking of leaving a comment that is abusive to anyone, any service, or anything, don't bother. Your efforts will be wasted. Criticise in a proper way or raise an issue with a service that you find questionable - fine. We can debate these things like adults. Abuse? No. That's not on, either here or anywhere else.

Why am I so agitated? What's in it for me to defend the cause of the tipster? I tell you what's in it for me. I am paying these people for their expertise. I have chosen to follow them. I approached them. I have made a judgment. They have not contacted me. They have not asked me to follow them. I want these people to be able to work under circumstances whereby the pressure they are under comes only from themselves. I do not want theit confidence affected in such a way that they start to deviate from the methods that they have used to become successful in the first place. Because if they don't, chances are they are going to make me money. It's that simple.

As for the services/blogs/sites that provide tips for free. I want them to want to do so. Mark at the Patient Speculation blog is starting a portfolio largely made up of these kind of services. Follow him. If he makes a success of it, then so can you. Without paying any fees! Put yourself in the shoes of someone doing this. Someone putting in time and huge effort for no financial rewards other than that which comes from their own betting. And then you get some pathetic, abusive message, or a comment on another's blog with snide implications. I know what I'd do. I wouldn't bother. And then what do the reasonable followers do?

I know that the majority of you reading this would never dream of acting in such a way. For the one or two who might read this post, and who have been guilty of such selfishness, just think on it for a moment, will you?

Today's Action

A bit busier on the racing today. Five services in action, three profitably so.

On The Nose managed to pick up a couple of points finding a very nice winner at Ludlow (Russian Epic - 10/1). They also permed three horses for three each way doubles and an each way treble but the other two selections finished unplaced.

Ultra efficiency from Northern Monkey today, their one tip winning (Nimue - Leicester - 4/1).

Chasemaster continue their consistent run, their one tip recommended each way and finishing second (Cruchain - Ludlow - 8/1) in Russian Epic's race.

PJA NH also had Cruchain each way and a loser. A blank today for ProBandit.

On The Nose: Staked 3.5pts, +2pts.
Northern Monkey: Staked 0.75pts, +1.8pts.
Chasemaster: Staked 0.25pts, +0.075pts.
PJA NH: Staked 1.25pts, -0.6pts.
ProBandit: Staked 0.75pts, -0.75pts.
Total financial profit on the horses of £38.50.

The Sportsman had a little dabble on the Premier League Darts tonight, unsuccessfully as it turned out.

The Sportsman: Staked 0.1pt, -0.1pt.
Total financial loss on the darts of £40.

Thursday 31st March: Staked £195, -£1.50.
Week to date: Staked £580, +£206.22.
March 2011: Staked £14,175, +£1,098.25, roi 7.74%.

Thankyou for bearing with me tonight. I know I've been grumpy, but when you feel passionate about something, I reckon it's best to let it all out.

I'm aware I need to do a March review. That, and the answers to the questions that have been asked this week, will come after the weekend. The end of the month is always the best time to reflect, gain some perspective, and make sure that the strategy for the coming month is clear. There are one or two big decsions to make tonight, and I want to take my time making them.

Over and out...


  1. Hi
    Peter from Chasemaster here. You'll be even grumpier if you reread my message as we also went each way at 10/1 (SP 12/1) the third in the race!
    It never rains......

  2. There isn't much we can do about problematic people, they're all around us. You just have to let them take a sniff, no reactions, and they'll be on their way to look for someone else to provoke.

    Maybe you were referring to my blog today, I hope so. When I saw the messages it was just a case of deleting them, no bad words or stress. There will always be people that take advantage, there used to be a time when we could leave our houses unlocked, but because of a few we have to lock everything up now. Anyway, my comments area will be staying open, anything silly will be deleted, easy as that.

  3. Peter - in the words of one very grumpy man, "I just don't believe it"!.

    What was I thinking? I remember having to take a call at work just as I was finishing placing the bet on Cruchain - I must have become completely distracted!

    You know I pride myself on discipline and doing as instructed, and yet this week I've missed a couple of Football Investor's bets, got a much poorer price on The Football Analyst's bet than I should, and now this!

    Just to add to the overall grumpiness in this particular household, I have one heck of a toothache! I need an early night...


  4. Hi Kodagira,

    I was aware that something happened on your blog, but didn't ever get to see what exactly. It wasn't just that though - it's the comments you get here, there and everywhere.

    You're right of course, and I shouldn't let these people provoke me. But when everything has been said and done, I do genuinely feel for the tipsters. I know none of them need me to fight their battles for them, but what gets me is just a simple lack of courtesy. These senseless comments are, when it boils down to it, just plain rude. It's that that really gets on my wick, as you may have noticed (lol!). If my young kids were as rude to anybody, they'd be pulled up pretty sharpish because they should know better. Manners cost nothing and all that...

    Anyway, on a brighter note, great to see things are turning your way a bit more now. You must be pleased with the progress.

    Speak soon,


  5. Hi Rowan,

    Firstly do you mind exchanging blog links?

    Secondly, I agree with everything you’ve written. These anonymous abusive comments need to be taken with a pinch of salt by the tipping/blogging community they are written by people unable to mentally cope with the odd loser and with banks staked badly, no doubt Mr Anonymous has blown his last £20 on a free bet seen it lose and then felt it necessary to vent his anger at the person who outlined the tip. It’s particularly rife on somewhere like Facebook where by a lot of blog links or tipping services can be seen and you see comment and comment criticising the writer with personal abuse. As you say it’s not on but these idiots won’t change unless they change their mindset, next week they’ll part with some of their wages, perhaps see a winner but continue to slate every loser that arrives. One tale that made me laugh was following the Formbet service last year and Dave who runs the service regularly got abuse after a losing day, probably still does, yet over the month the service was still well in profit, if people can’t look past one day to the next then do have problems. Long term thinking is the only way to go with betting in my opinion and to do that you need to be mentally pretty tough and you need to have the correct bankrolls, Mr Anonymous always will fall down on both of these parts and as such then feels it’s necessary to shout abuse.

    I hope the majority of the blogging/tipping fraternity ignores them because you can question yourself, but at the end of the day if people follow selections then they need to be aware they will lose from time to time, they also need to understand odds and percentages. It’s unlikely to happen with most of the anonymous idiots but hopefully the free bets and tipping services will continue with or without the odd complaint which is always going to be inevitable after a bad day.

    Best of Luck Rich (aka Lonesome Pundit)

  6. Hey all,

    Just spent 10 minutes reading your blog Rowan, then went onto the SBC forum. Are you proud of the fact that i read your blog before SBC forum now? haha.

    Is today's subject a rant against the service affected in the SBC forum today?

    I am in complete agreement with you in any case. When someone criticises a tipster service, especially one i am part of/have been part of, I get really defensive.

    As you said, the tipster doesn't come to you, you come to them. Nothing is perfect in the world. Do people honestly think that every tipster in the world can guarantee a profit every month every year??

    I admit i would be pissed off if that tipster hadn't been profitable after one year. But do you know who i would blame? ME!! Because i chose to be with that service based on my research.

    I couldn't care less about those who criticise often. But i do care about how much of an influence they may have on that tipster. Say a tipster gets too many complaints that he can deal with. It may cause him to change his methods, which in turn may affect my tips/results. I don't want this.

    I will always defend a tipster i am part of, because at the end of the day it will help defend my tips.


  7. Interesting post Rowan, I think its fair to say that if we demand high standards of professionalism from our tipsters, they should expect the same back from the rest of us.

    In terms of the 'venting' excuse I recently read some excellent research that suggests how this actually exacerbates rather than solves a problem. If I can remember which book I read this in, I will share it! Certainly its changed how I 'let off steam' these days...

  8. Dear Oh Dear
    Whats going on here then.Have i missed something? Is this about the guy having a go at Matt from football Ellite in the SBC forum?
    I noticed you got involved Rowan, there was no need however, Matt s stats proved the guy wrong.
    Maybe you need a short break Mate, a weekend off even, you l be amazed how it recharges the batteries.
    I myself took a week off just after cheltenham from my services but kept up with Pro B as i felt it had to turn sooner or later and it proved a good move. Ive dropped FE for the rest of the season and i ll have another look at it next season although ive not enjoyed the large staking required to make it worthwhile.
    Well, Mate, 3 months gone and no profit for me as yet. 734.45 loss to this point and would have been more if i hadnt taken a break.
    Ive cut down to the 2 services which made me around 10 grand profit last year so im hopefull for a turn in fortunes soon.
    looking around for other services of course for diversification but time constraints mean not too many, maybe 2 more. Must admit im liking the look of Market Examiner but havn t taken plunge yet.
    Good to see you taking a small profit now after subs so hopefully its profit galore from here.
    Take Care and Chill out Maaan LOL

  9. Hi Guys,

    Great comments. Thankyou for taking the trouble to post.

    I think there are several themes to explore here, each deserving of a proper dissection, so if it's ok with everyone, I'll use these quotes as I usually do in the main blog.

    Just some smaller points though...Rich - I'll get the link to your blog sorted at lunchtime, no problem.

    Andy - you've fast become my unoffical editor...I'll waffle on making a point and then you post a comment that very succinctly gets the point I was trying to make, nailed in a few words! One paragraph in your comment sums up the exact point I was making last night, and I really feel that it such an important aspect of making gambling work. More on that tonight.

    Mike - absolutely. Respect and expectations as to behaviour should work both ways. If you do find the research you refer to, I'd be interested in taking a read. I'm aware that it's natural to moan when things aren't going well. Like I said in the blog, I've done it myself. But there's a huge jump between having a whinge and hurling vitriolic abuse at someone.

    Anyway, thanks again folks.


  10. Hi Alan,

    No. It wasn't the FE thing, mate. Just generally seem to be seeing more and more abuse being flung at people who are obviously working hard to be profitable. There are a lot of conmen out there as we know, but when the good guys are getting it in the neck...

    Good advice about chilling...still, I don't get that emotional very often. Ask my wife! (lol).


  11. I Know what you mean Rowan. There are definately some good guys in amongst alot of schiesters that are trying their best, but its a hard world that tipsters live in and they should realise before they take money from people for a service that if people dont get a return for that payment, there is the likelehood that some people will react aggresively.
    Unfortunately it goes with the job description. The possible returns for 2 or 3 good tipping years are fantastic if they get it right so personally i dont lose sleep worrying about their fragility or otherwise.
    Basically, they are, like myself, self employed business men whos success or otherwise is dependent on the product they, and i produce.
    If i produce a product, and take money for that product and the said product is not good i risk being sued and thrown out of my line of work.
    Tipsters are businesses and in turn will flourish if successfull and if not then they are on the dole.
    LIfes a bitch sometimes but thats how it is

  12. Evening, Alan.

    I'm sure the folks running the services know what to expect, just as you say. And you're right, it's a tough business. But my day job is a tough, competitive business too, but it doesn't give anybody the right to slag me off and abuse me either directly or to others, you know? I give maximum effort at work to be 100% professional, polite and to provide as good a service as I can to clients and candidates alike (I work in recruitment), and I expect to be treated the same. If I'm not though, I soon let the person know. I can do that because I'm on firm ground - I know I've done evrything I can for them. But tipsters aren't generally in this position. They can't have a go back (professionally). Sure, they can point stats out and defend their corner on forums like Matt did, but that's it. They've no back up and can you imagine what would happen if they used the same sort of tone as some of the things they are sent or seen written about them? Their reputation would be in tatters, as would their business.

    I'm no Guardian Angel to these guys. Believe me, like you I set very high standards in my own mind that I want services to be reaching. And ultimately, your spot on - they have to produce the goods. But some of the things they have to put up with - nah, some people are bang out of order.

    By the way, I just swapped a couple of messages on Sam's Market Examiner blog. Read his reply to my question - I was pretty impressed with his outlook.

    Have a good weekend mate.


  13. Hi Rowan

    Not read your blog for a while but I fully understand you post.

    I have been absolutely hammered on my blog by certain unknown pathetic comments which at one point nearly stopped me from blogging I was that upset.

    I have received nasty mails a few times and I could not post them up as they where so nasty and offensive.

    As I only follow one service I have been under pressure from unknown posters on my blog to join other services to the point of being accused of being the service I follow!!
    I have always posted the facts and always give the service I follow a hard time when they have not performed. The posts seem to come when I do well and stop when I am having a bad time, think that says it all really. Jealous people who maybe have read my blog then tried to make a fortune over a week!!

    My blog is over a year old now and my strategy has worked for me and the blog has helped me take control of my betting.

    After Aintree i will be adding a new tipster to my blog but i doubt this will stop the bad comments.

    Unfortunately it just takes one or two bad apples to post pathetic comments, but you have to remember people do not like you doing well and enjoying what you do, they might not have a strategy like us and do their balls in the first week!! Also it could be rival services who are jealous of the services you subscribe.

    You have a great blog and it is one of my favourites, I am no writer as you can tell and always enjoy reading your posts.

    Know it's hard but don't let the buggers pull you down.....

    'Playing it safe'

  14. Hi Dean,

    Was just about to log off when I saw your comment come through...

    It's simply unbelievable - you know you write a blog because you want to and I guess people read it if they want to, but no-one is forcing them to read it. So why oh why do people think they have the right to criticise a blogger in an abusive way? If you don't like a blog, don't read it - simple!

    I'm sorry to hear you taking abuse on your site, Dean. I bet they don't leave a name, do they? It's just cowardly, rude bullsh*t from, as you say, people twisted by jealousy and envy.

    Tell you what though...I don't think there's going to be many jealous of me after today's woeful performance! (lol!).

    Keep up the good work with the blog, Dean. I read every night.

    Cheers now,