Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Drama in Scotland

Do not read the following if you are blissfully unaware of the drama that is currently going on about Knit Camp in Scotland and want to stay that way. It's pretty infuriating. But when Lynda the Guppy IMed me with the details, I became enthralled and a little enraged. Here is the story, as I've been able to uncover, with what I'm hoping are chronological links.

  • Ysolda canceled her classes in June, citing a lack of agreement on the contract. For someone who seems to be very easy going and who expressed quite a bit of excitement, this seems troubling in retrospect.
  • Jessica AKA Mama Rav disassociated Ravelry from Knit Camp at the end of July, citing lack of contract and "the Ravelry name was unofficially used again this year," which must have made many attendees uneasy.
  • Lorilee arrived to teach her class on continental knitting, found there was no work visa for her, was documented, treated like a criminal and deported.
  • All non-European teachers arriving in Scotland discovered they also did not have work visas and had to leave the country. Most/all of them went to another country to await their work visas. This was the weekend, nothing could be done until Monday.
  • The website for the Knit Camp went down at some point during the catastrophe and did not come back up until early Tuesday, PDT.
  • There was and still is not as, of this writing, any official statement anywhere from the organizers explaining the situation, announcing the changes in schedules and substitutions, explaining how to get refunds. Nor were there emails sent out to attendees affected before this morning.
  • European teachers were also forgotten in the hubbub, at least one being stranded for two hours at an airport.
  • The organizer, Jo, has left a number of petulant, unprofessional responses over Ravelry -- including chastising Lorilee and calling her a liar. She attended a tea party and then a dinner rather than make a post and then declared she needed sleep before she could post. Meanwhile, many attendees were trying to determine if they should make the trek to attend the classes they paid for. 
  • Jo arranged to teach the class Jared Flood was going to teach on Tuesday. You know, because they are interchangeable. I don't know if this substitution actually took place.
  • There is also some side drama regarding the official knit camp sock pattern/kit that Lorilee designed.
Kristen Rengren AKA retroknit has posted a solution for Jo, which will help everyone including Jo. It would be a hard pill for her to swallow voluntarily, but as retroknit points out, she's going to have to swallow it no matter what. Her post also hints at more of the backstory that led up to this fiasco.

I hear that the people actually attending are having a wonderful time. I am very happy for that. I just feel sorry for all of the people who were adversely affected. Knitting events should always be anti-stress!

Good luck, Knit Campers. I hope all turns out the best it possibly can.

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