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First, Arena's SEC Correction? Is It Time For Writers To Follow Their Example?

|Includes: Arena Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ARNA)

Arena was dragged through the mud and CEO Jack Leif has been called every name in the book because Arena filed a 2nd SEC filing within 24 hours of the first.

There's an ancient saying that says, "You reap what you sow."

Here's a quote, a response from AndyBiotech to Adam Feuerstein on Twitter. Feuerstein is asking AndyBiotech who he thinks was spreading the rumor. AndyBiotech responds:

No idea, I didn't get the IMS numbers until last night. Heard a fake # was cited by Spencer Osborne in an SA article

However, Mr. Osborne has written on his own article in the "Comments" section the following:

Corrections...

- Confirmed IMS numbers are just below 4,000 not above.
- Week over week unadjusted is 11% not 18%
- Symphony (unadjusted) is 4,204

My typical source was not in Friday because of the holiday weekend. A number flew around the net in the morning. I waited quite a few hours trying to vet it out, but the holiday weekend was making that a challenge. I then received several communications from several people all saying that the number over 4,000 was indeed legitimate. The number is actually a bit over 3,800, which made its way with better verification this morning.

This is a rather stunning revelation! After accusing Arena of giving the perception of "hiding" information from investors or calling into question Arena's CEO Leif we now see the table turned on Mr. Osborne. Still, to Mr. Osborne's credit, he posted his error with a correction. I applaud him even if it was slower than Arena's second SEC filing (that's humor).

My viewpoint is that mistakes get made, but this turn of events should do us all good to remember that even with good motivations, castrating Arena's CEO in print can come back to haunt you. Better to just say, "I made a mistake and I apologize for my error."

Just remember another old adage, "To err is human. To forgive is divine."

SA writers are humans, and humans err. Therefore, I choose to forgive Mr. Osborne, but I sure hope that next time he makes a better effort of choosing his source(s) of information rather than a chat board. As SA's #1 biotech writer he has a lot of followers. As Spiderman says, "With great power comes great responsibility." Hopefully, SA's lawyers will respect Mr. Osborne's correction as an act of bravery and honesty.

Hopefully we can all learn from our mistakes and give people like Mr. Osborne and Dr. Jack Leif the benefit of the doubt. Meanwhile I will continue to conduct much deeper research.

Disclosure: I am long ARNA.

Additional disclosure: Unpublished Instablog.