Tuesday, September 1, 2009

my creative world has fallen apart this morning...

I have a big decision to make and truthfully it is tearing me apart.

I want to say first and for most that I love Stampin' Up! and its products. The first stamp I ever used was a Stampin' Up! stamp and the only card stock I ever use comes from them as well. But I am faced with a dilema. As of this morning, September 1st, Stampin' Up! has set a new online policy that would forbid me as a demonstrator for their company from continuing to be a member of any stamp companies design team, showing, linking to, blogging, tweeting or sharing anything that contains a product that is not theirs. This means that the links to my friends blogs on the side are no longer allowed. Publishing this post on facebook is forbidden. Even posting on SplitCoastStampers may be no longer allowed. Linking to challenges that I participate in, no longer acceptable.

I need to decide if the few thousand dollars I make a year selling Stampin' Up! products is worth losing my following online. The few people who appreciate my craft, the companies that value my art enough to want me to represent them. My decision is further complicated by the fact that I will be doing a guest designer spot this fall for what is literally my dream design team. Truthfully if I was starting a permanent spot with them this decision would be much easier because I would definitely give up Stampin' Up! to represent them because I believe so strongly in what they stand for.

So my friends I ask for your prayers as I struggle with deciding what is right for me. Is my business more important then my art? Is this seeking of outside approval wrong. As a mostly stay at home mother of 5 have I come to rely to much on the rush I get from a positive response to my creations. Positive feedback that may be lacking in my life in other ways as I struggle with a mundane existence. I don't have the answers and I don't even know what I am going to decide. But I do know that I am going to go pray about it...

20 comments:

imastampin said...

Oh Deb, I am so sorry you have to go through this and I am shocked that SU! is doing this. I think it is a grave mistake on their part. How sad. Well girl, you will do what is right for you. That truly is a hard decision.

Knowing that I made that decision a few months ago, let me assure you, it isn't as bad from this side as you might think.

Hugs and prayers coming your way my friend!

Taylor said...

{{{hugs}}} What a tough decision. If you are looking for opinion - no, I don't think staying with SU is worth it. You are so amazingly talented, and to limit your creative outlets would be detrimental to your sense of you! I do think this policy is entirely too restrictive on SU's part - I am shocked that they would hand down such a tight and steadfast rule. I'm sure you aren't alone in your tough decision - I know lots of people who will be affected by this.

Rebecca {bellacarta} said...

I gave up my demonstratorship a month ago, and truthfully, while I love SU - haven't missed being a demonstrator. With this new policy, if I hadn't dropped, I would be now - as I think this policy IMHO is stifling. I'm shocked they have done this, it seems very restrictive.

steph said...

I think this is totally wrong for stamping up to do this. There are many types/designs styles of stamps on the market and so it is not like if you use another product you will lose a sale! I can understand you just having to use their products when you are doing parties or stalls specifically aimed at their products but seriously - what crafter only ever uses one single company for products?! No nesties, dies cuts, copics!!!!!!?? etc I was considering joining up but there's no way I am giving up all the other products on the market, the DT work, magazine commissions and challenge blogs!! Can you not have a separate SU blog? So you can still do links and challenges and stuff on your blog and keep the other blog ALL SU?!! If not then a big BOOOOOOOOOOOO SU - that stinks! Debi, I feel for you, this will be a tough decision...........

Clare (Littlebear) said...

I cannot believe SU are doing this. They risk losing a lot of demonstrators. I do not envy you your decision and I think you should never have been placed in the position of having to choose. Surely SU realise that it is possible to love and promote products from more than one company!
Best of luck in your decision making and, remember, whatever you choose will be right for you.
Clare x

Melissa said...

Deb-
You are way too talented to let Stampin' Up do this to you and all the other talented artists out there- They need to think about the policy- they will loose a lot of very talented people with such a policy- too bad for them Deb- But you've got to do what is right for you and your family- I recently was approached by a large well known photographer in the area and was asked to go on their team- but I would have had to give up all I do- Heck no!!! You've got talent- use it girl. -Melissa

Judy Rozema said...

I am so sorry you have to make this decision. I haven't really missed SU! at all since leaving earlier this year, and I am so glad that I did!

I am also glad you will be stamping with me soon!

Dawny P said...

Oh Debi, Steph just told me about this. I feel so angry for you hunny and I seriously will never buy another SU product again. I am going to hightlight this on my blog later on. They have no right whatsoever to dictate these terms to you chick and even less right to put you through this. A lot of my blogging friends sell SU and I would be so sorry to see their blogs go. I'm sure through your prayers you will find the right solution for you but I am just so sorry that you even have to contemplate this in the first place. You know where I am hunny if you want a moan or a rant chick. Biggest hugs, Dawnmy xxxxx

My Little Space said...

Debi, I think this is really out of order for SU to do this. I am a hobby demo in the UK and if they try and enforce this on us, I will definitely be giving up my demonstratorship!

This is an awful decision you have to make and so totally unfair. Your artwork is fantastic !!

Mandy

Milliesmarvels said...

Hi Debi,
I am so sorry to read the decision you are faced with. I think this is a terrible thing that Stampin Up are asking of you and completely nonsensical. I have never bought from SU and I don't plan to now! I would never be able to limit myself to using just one brand and to stifle your artistic talent in that way borders on cruelty and I think it can not be worth it. I am sure you will make the decision that is right for you and hope you will still be here sharing all your wonderful and inspirational creations as I love seeing your cards.
Jane
x

Jen said...

I am right there with you. I to have a hard choice to make, do I keep my demoship or do I give it up and continue my blog with links to other friends who I love there work. I think this is a bad choice on SU to do this and only time will tell. I wish you the best of luck in this hard decision making.

Aznewmom said...

Hi Deb. So sorry about this situation. I'm right there with you and don't know what I will do. I do not believe in censorship and will keep my friends, blog connections, and talk to whomever I want. If that means giving up SU, then I will give it up. They have great products, but this is just wrong. :(

craftingmanda said...

i can't believe what a stupid idea this is on SU's part they are going to loose so many demonstrators it is inbelievable and in turn loose themselves revenue. No one crafter I have ever spoken too uses one company alone i think you should leave them you will miss the blogging world and challenges more than you will miss them but it is of course your decision to make and one you need to be happy with.

Juliana said...

You know my feelings on this. I trust you will not make any decision on a whim or without counsel. You also know that I will support you no matter what!

simplyfairies said...

I am gbsmacked at SU's decision, and I think they are badly represent in the legal dept!!

They are fools to believe that this will not affect there sales, it makes them look greedy, very greedy indeed....

I can see lots of Demo's handing in the towl over this one, and I truly hope that they backtrack and fast!!

Get your contracts in place babe, email dawny she has one waiting for you, and at leats you have another year to think about your position in Stampin up...

A truly bad decision they have made!!

Am here for ya , you know that!

Diane said...

Hi Deb! This is very sad. I've heard of this company, but never knew they'd stoop this low. It's not like they have the monopoly on the business world. What they are doing is blatantly attacking your personal freedoms to choose your method of marketing your business. Sounds like someone else I know, but that's another story.

I'll be praying for you as you make this heart-wrenching decision. God bless!

Anonymous said...

Hi Deb,
I'm very sorry that a greedy company has put so many of their hardworking demonstrators into such an invidious position. Let's face it, not one of us who stamps uses only one stamping company because none of them have everything, and besides, if all of the blogs owned by su demonstrators stop using other products, think how similar the blogs will all look - there will be a sameness that could become boring, especially for those of us who don't use su products at all. I don't believe in censorship, and I don't envy you this decision.
All the best with your decision, Kikki.

Kelly Hampton said...

Debi, I am faced with the same decision. It was very easy for me, though, because making cards is my creative outlet and I won't allow it to be censored. I don't want to have to scrutinize every post I make, every item I create, and every comment I make. I will be resigning as a demo effective September 30, 2009.

It sounds like it is a much more difficult decision for you. You are in my thoughts as you make it. Kelly

Jodi Collins aka Kharmagirl said...

It is such a hard decision Debi! Good luck in whatever you choose to do! Your Anya cards totally make me smile!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Debbie,
I am a total stranger, I just happened onto your blog this morning. I am an SU demo in Canada and am quite p.o.'d (but not shocked) by this new policy. I think it's heavy-handed and greedy and anti-personal rights & freedoms and ostrich-sighted...I could go on, but what bothers me most is that the message SU constantly puts forth is: it's all about creativity. Um-hmmm.
You seem to be a person whose creativity matters a GREAT DEAL to you and your daily life. It's entirely your decision, obviously, but do you want to give SU so much power over what you do and say as a stamping individual??
Just my two nosy cents. :)
Peace be with you.