ABSTRACT: This case introduces the alternatives that companies must consider when deciding how to comply with the SEC’s (U.S. Security and Exchange Commission) 2009 mandate to include financial statements in XBRL format when submitting quarterly and annual reports. Jim’s Sporting Goods, an SEC-accelerated filer, is facing compliance with this mandate in about a year and they are investigating their alternatives. Working with Jim’s Sporting Goods’ income statement for 2010, students become actively engaged in each of three alternatives. Students first take on the role of an external tagging agent who must map Jim’s Sporting Goods’ income statement line items to elements in the U.S. GAAP XBRL taxonomy. Students make decisions between competing potential XBRL elements, document their decisions in a spreadsheet, and identify issues to be resolved by Jim’s Sporting Goods’ CFO. Second, students take on the role of an internal accountant who must learn to use an Excel-based software package, Rivet Dragon Tag, to tag Jim’s Sporting Goods’ income statement line items. Third, students register with and become familiar with an online tagging service to tag Jim’s Sporting Goods’ income statement line items. Finally, students evaluate the three alternatives, discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each, and make a recommendation for how to proceed. The case is based on an actual publicly traded company facing the compliance issues presented.

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