From the Creating Keepsakes website homepage:
Hall of Fame 2007 Announcement
Dear Creating Keepsakes readers and scrapbookers:
We would like to thank you for your loyal dedication and continued commitment to scrapbooking and our Creating Keepsakes (CK) magazine. Without the support of our loyal readers and scrapbooking partners we would not be where we are today. In the spirit of continuing our editorial mission and fulfilling our commitment to you, we want to address the recent incident related to our Hall of Fame (HOF) contest.
We have been reading your comments and dialogue on the Creating Keepsakes message board and we internally investigated the error that has caused us all great concern: awarding Hall of Fame recognition to someone who submitted work that was not solely their own.
Our review has found the primary cause of our error. Staff changes on the CK and Hall of Fame editorial team occurred at a critical juncture in the production of the HOF book and the new team was not fully briefed on this assignment. The specific breakdown came just as the HOF book was going to press. One of our staff was called by a winner who requested a photo credit be given to another photographer for one of the winner’s photo entries. Given that the rules of the contest dictate contestants submit their own work, we should have disqualified this person’s entry accordingly. Unfortunately, our staff person did not understand the ramifications of the winner’s request and simply added the other photographer’s credit to the HOF book after the publication had already been proofed for printing.
We acknowledge and take full responsibility of our mistake and we assure you that it was not done with any bad intent. We deeply value the trust of our readers. We have read your messages and want to explain our action plan outlined below to help rectify the situation and assure you it will not happen again:
1. We appreciate the winner’s forthrightness in notifying us that the photo credit should be given to another photographer. Unfortunately, as a matter of fairness to our other contestants, this winner has been disqualified.
2. As part of the contest rules, all potential winning entrants must sign an affidavit confirming that their entries are solely their own work. Although we received signed affidavits from all such entrants, we now have evidence that such a measure failed to protect us against all errors. In order to satisfy both our and our readers’ concerns that no other errors occurred during the HOF contest, we are now resubmitting this affidavit to the other 24 winners for final verification thereby underscoring its importance to the integrity of the HOF contest.
3. One week after receiving the newly signed affidavits, we will announce the 26th place ‘winner’ (Honorable Mention) and add him/her to the 2007 Hall of Fame. The winner will receive the prizes and cash award granted to the other 24 winners.
4. Upon receiving their second affidavit should other 2007 winners come forward and acknowledge that their work is not solely their own or fail to return the second affidavit, we will disqualify them and add the next-in-line Honorable Mention(s) to the 2007 Hall of Fame, providing the prizes and cash award accordingly.
5. We will print a special The Scrapbook Hall of Fame, Volume 9 supplement to honor the new winner(s) and re-acknowledge those winners. This special printing will be poly-bagged with Creating Keepsakes’ February 2008 issue, which will deliver into subscribers’ homes and onto newsstands late December 2007
6. We will move forward with our 2008 Hall of Fame contest, but revised rules that will be published on our web site by November 1, 2007 and in the January 2008 issue of Creating Keepsakes. To avoid such errors in future contests, all relevant staff members have been appropriately informed and educated on contest rules.
Certainly this has been a challenging situation for us all. We are painfully aware that our error has deeply upset many of you, our cherished readers and scrapbooking partners. We value you and your trust that you have placed in us and we will continue to do everything we can to maintain your faith in Creating Keepsakes. We hope our response to our error is seen as a step towards maintaining your trust.
We deeply appreciate your support and hope you continue to enjoy our magazine, scrapbooking events and book products for many years to come. If you have any questions to comments, please contact Lin Sorenson at email@example.com.
With our sincerest apologies,
Chief Executive Officer