Monday, October 08, 2007

Best Quote I Heard All Day
The pen is the tongue of the mind.--Cervantes

So here is the culmination of the Susan Ripley Pattern-A-Day spam-a-thon. Her response to my letter and my final response to her.

Case closed.

Ripley's Believe It Or Not

Susan's response to my letter:

Hi Marilyn,

You can absolutely delete it and I am sorry - as protocol, I have checked profiles and searched wherever I could to find an email address – I must have missed yours completely. That is my preference. I by no means want to anger or take advantage of anyone’s space (that doesn’t do anyone any good – least of all me and the calendar). The message is actually set-up as an email so that I can give it to the owners and let them decide whether to post it or not to post it. You should be able to find as many if not more blog owners that I contacted by email and only by email. The same is true of pod casts, yarn shops and other related websites.

It is my sole intent to let as many people know about the contest as possible. They can they do what they want at that point. Most of the blogs actually have a review process where I could post the information and the owner could review prior to it ever being published. I have to say although I do web design – I don’t do much blogging at all and I find the interface very difficult sometimes, but it is one of the best means to finding knitters and crocheters out there.

I completely understand and respect the designers that I have come across that don’t want anything to do with this project. I feel that it is a good opportunity on multiple levels. The first is for the newbie or non-professional that wants a published piece. Many contributors do it solely to receive the calendar in exchange for one of their pieces. Some do it for the prospect of winning the prize money. And many do it for the advertising/profile raising of getting their website listed in the calendar and don’t care about being published or the prize money. But that being said, I am a business owner and an artist at that and 100% understand that this is a person’s time, talent and in some cases primary means of income and I would never want to diminish that.

Please feel free to post my apology on your blog and I will be more than happy to post it on the website or my blog as well – I really meant no harm. I would be happy to call and talk with you about it if you give me your phone number as well. I am truly sorry that my posting on your blog upset you, your readers, and other bloggers at that, I really didn’t expect it to be this upsetting and would not have considered it an option had I known it would have this kind of response.

Susan Ripley

My response to this:


Indeed, I know many people who received your email and deleted it out of hand, were annoyed, but probably won't bother contacting you. A number of bloggers who I know simply deleted your notice from their comments. I chose to make an example of you because I find that kind of thing absolutely uncalled for. I don't think you quite understood what kind of ill will you would spawn when you placed your solicitation into people's comments--you're viewed as a spammer, and frankly, that's what it is. You're defeating your own purpose here. Rather than do that, leave people's comments alone in the future.

I accept your apology and I will publish your letter. Fair is fair. I'm sure you didn't mean any malice; however, you do expect to make money from the calendar, presumably. No matter how you cut it, it's a commercial venture, and one that will be populated by virtually free material. Of course, going unpaid is the choice of those people who want to contribute. I don't encourage people to do work for nothing and I would not endorse your contest. There is much too much of that going on in the knitting industry, with wannabes hoping for some publicity. It devalues those of us who do get paid for our design work, our writing, and any other related work. I am a professional writer and I believe that if one does the work, one should be paid something, at the very least. The only people for whom I work gratis are my friends.

I would hope you understand my stance on this subject and respect it. I will respect your commercial venture also if you conduct it in the proper spirit and manner.

Marilyn Roberts

Can you guess what Open Mic Thursday's topic will be? Get ready. Two days away.

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