ACTION WILL ALWAYS BE LOUDER THAN WORDS, which is why I have spent the last several days in action for my business and on behalf of you, my clients.
I have always loved the gallery system I used to deliver your photos and I’ve used it since I started my business three and a half years ago. I considered it to be the most robust system around and I was getting it for an amazing price because I signed up when they were in beta. But now I’m leaving that system. The owner of the company has proven, through words and actions in his online community, that he cares more about providing a safe and inclusive space for racists, bigots and sexists than he does about ensuring the safety and inclusivity of the already marginalized members of his company's users and community.
On Friday, June 5th, there was a very public post made by the company owner expressing his desire to squash any dialogue related to anti-racism. This was then followed by mass deleting of comments from BIPOC members, as well as banning or muting any members supporting a BLM stance, asking a question about the video, or just disagreeing with the company owner in general. ACTIVELY SILENCING BIPOC VOICES FOR SIMPLY TALKING ABOUT RACISM WILL NEVER BE ACCEPTABLE TO ME. There is no valid excuse or reason. In addition, it has become public through all this that an ongoing sexual harassment incident occurred at the company and the victim was forced to leave while the harasser was permitted to continue working at the company in a less public role. THIS WILL ALSO NEVER BE ACCEPTABLE TO ME and this company owner has shown where his values truly lie. I cannot allow myself and my clients to be morally compromised by continuing to use this gallery service. I serve a diverse client base that is inclusive of a variety of races, faiths, gender identity and sexual preference. Being authentic and inclusive are core values for me and my business. This company has violated both of those in a grotesque fashion. After the June 5th incident I was sickened to think that my clients, especially those from diverse backgrounds, were helping this man profit because I had chosen to use this as my gallery hosting service.
To all my clients, I am sorry. New hope is on the horizon. The company that developed that gallery system has their own, virtually identical gallery hosting service and after essentially 24 hours of vetting by myself and hordes of other photographers looking to exodus, I feel confident in migrating all my client galleries there. This new service has consistently shown diversity within their marketing, has a diverse staff that comes from all regions of the world, and has made statements that denounce what happened on June 5th and from before that showing genuine support for BLM and a shared value of inclusivity that I hold. As a business owner in the type of business I’m in making these decisions are not done lightly, especially now as we’re learning so much about who people and businesses really are. I know that I'm not perfect, that I have and will again make mistakes. Right now it’s hard for me to trust that any of the companies I’m investing my money, YOUR money, in are the right choice. However, I feel confident moving forward with this new gallery host company after researching it compared to all the other comprehensive gallery host competitors out there.
Everyone will be receiving an email with updated gallery links as soon as they are available. I’m moving galleries over as quickly as I can and have been since June 6th but it’s a slower migration than I anticipated. Thank you in advance for your patience and understanding as I move through this process.