“We were wrong.”
It’s rare that those words come so bluntly from a company, but that’s Kickstarter’s message to its users.
The crowdfunding site published a blog post today titled “We were wrong
,” in which the company apologizes for not canceling a project that included appallingly sexist material.
The project in question, which Kickstarter cached in the spirit of transparency
, was for a seduction guide that featured such atrocious suggestions as:
• Don't ask for permission. Be dominant. Force her to rebuff your advances.
• If a woman isn't comfortable, take a break and try again later.
On a blog post
that made the rounds on Reddit (link has NSFW language), Kickstarter was bashed for allowing such a project to gain funding through its service.
In the Kickstarter mea culpa
, the company says it was mainly a matter of timing:
Why didn’t we cancel the project when this material was brought to our attention? Two things influenced our decision:
• The decision had to be made immediately. We had only two hours from when we found out about the material to when the project was ending. We’ve never acted to remove a project that quickly.
These factors don’t excuse our decision but we hope they add clarity to how we arrived at it.
• Our processes, and everyday thinking, bias heavily toward creators. This is deeply ingrained. We feel a duty to our community—and our creators especially—to approach these investigations methodically as there is no margin for error in canceling a project. This thinking made us miss the forest for the trees.
Kickstarter is also going above the $16,000 raised for the book and is planning to donate $25,000 to RAINN, an organization that works to end sexual violence.
[RELATED: Ragan's new distance-learning site houses the most comprehensive video training library for corporate communicators.]
Anyone wondering how to handle a corporate apology can take a page from Kickstarter’s book.
for the full text.