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Pandora Following Script That Could Keep Crushing Shorts

Stocks in this article: P AAPL

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- I'm not sure why I let this stuff bother me so much.

I guess, at the end of every hard-earned day ... if I expect to still find some reason to believe, I need to cue up Springsteen and then call out financial media injustice. This time with respect to Pandora (P).

It's a shame to see Seeking Alpha, the site that provided me and so many of my friends and colleagues with an excellent platform to learn and grow from, devolve into a sweatshop for uninformed and poorly-researched "Short Ideas."

There's a "contributor" to Seeking Alpha who stands out among the handful who constantly publish bearish Pandora proclamations. This person only rises from the pack because his short theses do not stand up to even the lightest journalistic eyeball or most casual edit.

I presume Seeking Alpha has stopped using editors because the ones I worked with between 2011 and 2012 would have never let this sort of tripe get past them.

In "Quoth the Raven's" most recent Pandora piece, he tells us that ...

Clearly, the active listeners have started to hit some type of plateau ...

He makes this case void of any context whatsoever beyond what he can pull from his clearly uninformed and shamefully opportunistic perch.

First, moderation in the growth of listenership, whether you choose to use listener hours or active listeners, has been expected for years. It's expected as a general function of the broad business Pandora runs in. But it's also expected by Pandora's own admission.

This is where Seeking Alpha is culpable. Any good editor would have directed this "writer" to do a search for the Pandora ticker (it's 'P') at the very Web site he writes for. He would have, after about a minute and a half of searching, come across the articles I cited in this week's Pandora: The Definitive Look Back and Look Ahead.

These linked articles, published at Seeking Alpha, explicitly state -- in my own words and in the words of Pandora's CFO in 2012 -- that Pandora would see growth moderate. Anybody who has even studied the dynamics of Pandora's business understands this. It's not the shocking relevation "Quoth the Raven" makes it out to be. It's not something Pandora has been hiding from us and does not want us to see.

There's absolutely zero smoke and mirrors here.

As transparent as can be, Pandora has been anticipating and preparing for moderation in growth for years. Certainly longer than this person has been producing hack journalism for a once-respected Web site. And, like the good business it is, Pandora has clear-headed ideas on how its business will play out.

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