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A Double Whammy

6 March 2012

As the stories about KAL Media (In Liquidation) and All Craft Media travel like lightening around the internet, more and more is revealed.

I’ve concentrated mainly on the fiasco which surrounds Yarn Forward/Knit Magazine but there are other publications in this ‘stable’  one of which is Inside Crochet.  The stories from their designers and subscribers pretty much mirror those from Knit.

Except that some of the Inside Crochet designers have had a double-whammy.  They signed contracts with KAL and submitted designs.  They may or may not have been paid for them.  I understand that their contracts state that KAL has the option to have these patterns published elsewhere but will advise the designers beforehand and will pay them 50% of all moneys received.

I think you can guess the rest! Some of these designers have found their patterns in an American crochet magazine.  No consultation with the designers – no payments. 

This also raised the interesting question of who actually SOLD these pattens elsewhere.  KAL has been in liquidation since last June and therefore isn’t in a position to sell anything.   ACM now handles the publications.  I don’t think these patterns have ever been ACMs to sell.  If ACM genuinely believes that they do have the right to sell these, why hasn’t it paid the designers?  But the designers didn’t have contracts with ACM, just with KAL.   And if the contracts were with KAL, the income from their sales should go into the funds of the liquidated company to be distributed to creditors. 

Confused?  It gets better (or worse, depending on your perspective).  Rest assured I’ll be returning to this subject in the next few days.

 

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10 comments

  1. I there a possibility you could provide a ‘like’ button on your blog Detective PomPom? 🙂


  2. like (1)


  3. I’m confused, what involvement have you had in the past with either KAL or ACM or are you just fighting the corner for others?


    • Anna – all of us in the fibre community are in this together. I have had dealings with Kerrie during the Magknits years (and got paid – lucky me) but I am still willing to raise the issue of KALM/ACM even though I don’t have a duck in this particular race.


      • I disagree. Whilst some of us may be affected more than others I do think that if we are not directly affected then we should keep our noses out. Jumping on a bandwagon on the road to a witch hunt is really unpleasant viewing. I think a lot of people who have got themselves involved in this will end up regretting and it doesn’t win you any fans


      • Could you explain why you think people highlighting this will get hurt? and why reporting factually about a dodgy business is a witch-hunt?


      • Well I have been affected directly and I am glad that people with blogs such as Pompom are spreading the word far and wide.

        If you don’t like the “unpleasantness” of what is happening, don’t watch and don’t contribute.

        As for regretting getting involved and not winning any fans, I’m not in this because it’s a popularity competition, I’m here because I was swindled.


      • If you bothered to read this blog you would know why Pompom is involved. Like many people she was affected by the Hipknits saga when lots of people lost money through non delivery of goods ordered. We were fobbed off with lies and constant blaming others, never the seller’s fault. Since then there have been other companies owned by this same seller, who have acted in the same way, showing a total lack of respect to their customers and ultimately in one case going out of business owing over £200,000 to creditors, only to be set up again under Directorship of the seller’s husband and continuing in exactly the same way. this is apparently legal but many would agree totally immoral.

        Pompom is not the only blogger to draw attention to the situation, other people are highlighting the fact that many designers have not been paid for their published work.

        Keep on spreading the facts I say.


  4. I’m very glad she and others are posting about ACM/KAL. I personally have no dealings with any of these companies but I do browse the magazine rack every time I go to the store. In America I’ve seen quite a few magazines from overseas. I have a great The Knitter mag that has me drooling on a sweater design. After buying a Verena, I subscribed! Now, before I purchase anything I check to see who made it. I’m not paying someone that can’t pay their own talent. I’m upset for these people. Can’t imagine all that hard work and not being paid. The frustration of not getting answers.

    My only information is from the train wreck that this company/companies leaves. Years ago and today. As an outsider looking in I want to know so I don’t unknowingly give this company a dime of mine, ever. If they liquidate again in 3 years and call themselves MCA I want to know then too. The only way to fix things is to actually fix the things that are wrong. Earn the trust of designers and consumers (Boy do I have a consuming problem ! 🙂 )

    Anyway, that is my take on this. Being an informed consumer. I really don’t care who is informing me. A designer, another consumer, a publisher etc. I just want to know. I didn’t say this as eloquently as I wanted but there it is.

    Thank you PomPom 🙂


  5. Dear Annalou

    The fact is, were a company like (let’s say, for want of a company here in a general sense not a real sense because I don’t have an issue with them) Marks and Spencer repeatedly ripping off customers; taking money not sending goods, renaming the company, liquidating and redoing the SAME things over roughly 8 years, whether I were involved directly or not, I’d want people to know.

    The fact is, staff were unpaid, HRMC were unpaid, employers national insurance was unpaid. You know who covers that, when a company does that? The tax payer. That is *everyone* who pays tax has to make up the slack. Which in turn means there are less taxes in the coffers to pay for things like, oh I dunno, the health service, the police, the fire brigade.

    So while you think “people not involved should keep their noses out” I, and many others, think we should very much keep our noses in. The questionable practices by this company, and the person who runs it, should be advertised everywhere. It affects many crafting communities designers who remain unpaid for contracted work. The person who runs it takes advantage of people who are “nice” and not pushy because mostly they are new designers just starting out.

    It is akin to the film industry casting couch by older men, promising young girls the world if they shag them, then of course they don’t follow through.

    So you might think people aren’t involved, the reality is it affects us all. This company should be stopped from these business practices and the person running it removed. You know, like Fred Goodwin was removed from RBS for costing taxpayers money. Ms Allman is doing the SAME thing, just on a smaller scale. If you think that kind of practice is good and should be allowed to continue then you are very much in the minority.

    It is NOT a witch hunt by any means. It is a wish to stop a questionable person behaving as she does, repeatedly ripping people off and costing us taxpayers for her whimsical ideas of how a business should run. 8 years of it over and over is well, quite frankly, enough.

    The hand that has been feeding her all this time has had enough of being bitten.



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