Zurker is SuspendedZurker is suspended until a serious legal problem is resolved. The problem is an investigation by the US Securities and Exchange Commission. I do not know how long it will take to get this issue resolved but I ask for your understanding and patience. It may be necessary to shut Zurker down and reboot Zurker with an emphasis on regulatory compliance, or to reboot Zurker in a different and more welcoming jurisdiction.
Shortly after our Alexa rank surged past the 10,000 mark last year, I received an email from an attorney with the SEC. I think it is somewhat suspicious that Zurker came under investigation by the San Francisco office of the SEC right after attaining a significant Alexa rank. The SEC is headquartered in New York; the fact that the investigation is originating in San Francisco suggests to me that someone in or near San Francisco triggered the investigation.
Be that as it may, an investigation by the SEC is serious. I did not share this information with the community because, obviously, it would seriously undermine confidence in the Zurker project. Over the past few months, I have been dealing with the SEC as best as I could. I spoke with the SEC's attorney on the occasion when he called me; he was the only person to respond to our press release about the ratification of our Constitution.
I have not been able to ascertain which laws or regulations we are suspected of violating. The attorney pursuing Zurker did not answer my inquiry. To this day I do not know for certain which part of our operation the SEC considers to be non-compliant. As far as I know, we are fully compliant with all crowdfunding law.
The SEC's only goal seems to be to collect information about Zurker that will enable them to put together a case. I would have thought that it is more cost-effective for the SEC to send a warning to any potential offenders so that issues may be rectified, but apparently that's not how the SEC works.
After I refused to provide any information, the SEC subpoeaned the first contributer to Zurker's funding, my good friend Cineman, even though he has no access to Zurker data and is unable to provide any of the information requested by the SEC. His only crime was to be the first to believe in Zurker and contribute funding towards it.
At this point I offered to suspend Zurker's operations but Cineman said he is confident Zurker will be vindicated and the project must go on. He has always been an individual of high moral character and courage.
I myself was not subpoenaed probably because I have always been security-conscious and careful to hide my location.
However, I have learned that the SEC also subpoenaed my lawyer. While I have been intending to deal with the SEC as best as I can behind the scenes, this is no longer practical as long as the project is live.
I will do my best to put an end to the SEC persecution - my lawyer has advised me this is much easier to do with the project non-operational - so that the community may re-emerge and thrive.
Please stay tuned for an email in the (hopefully) near future.
March 26, 2014
Berzurker, founder of Zurker