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Old 09-02-2009, 12:13 PM   #1
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Default Question about the new SU! IDA regulations...

Hi, girls! I need some clarification from those "in the know!"

I run design team blog for my digital scrapbooking shop. We have several girls on our team who are SU! demos. Now, as I read some of the language in the new IDA (specifically the stuff I was reading on Cynthia Townley's blog here), it sounds like these girls on my team are either going to have to give up their SU! demonstratorship or give up our design team (because the posts they make on our blog promote the items in our shop). Goodness gracious! Seriously? Please, someone--tell me I'm reading this wrong and that they can still be a part of our blog team!

Much appreciated! Can you believe this craziness? But I'll leave my 2 cents out of this. I just want to know if I'm being forced to find new team members.
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Old 09-02-2009, 12:31 PM   #2
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Nicole,

In a nutshell, IF your design team members have a contract, they can speak with SU and SU will work with them on a case-by-case basis.

If they don't have a contract, then they will have to choose between your design team and continuing as a demo for SU. They have until Sept 30th to make that decision.

With the wording of the IDA and the Q&A, if they don't have to personally post on your DT blog or post on their blog promoting your shop, they CAN continue to design for you and YOU can post their projects on your website. It might be a nice compromise, if that works for you.

I am so sorry for all the DT owners and members who are now faced with these tough decisions.
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Old 09-02-2009, 02:03 PM   #3
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This is really tough! Many of my best design team members are also amazing stampers and demos for SU.

You would think that my papercraft templates would be the perfect companions for SU stamps and papers, however SU does sell templates as well. So, would my DT gals be in violation of the agreement? Sounds like it.

It's a pity because posting their projects in the digital community, and on my blog, etc. would give SU more exposure as well. It could have been a win/win. However, I sell my templates in a digital store that sells digital stamps and papers, so . . . sounds like a violation.

Such a shame! Makes me wanna cry! I love my girls and I hope they are able to stick around!
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Old 09-02-2009, 05:13 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info, Belinda!

Someone pointed me to some Q&A from SU! that leads me to believe that the goal of us all sending in a contract is for them to help the demos determine how best to break it. If that's the case... why bother. Sigh. What a mess!

I guess I'll have to figure out a way to work around this. We can still use our team members items in our newsletter, but I'm assuming that our girls can't then post their creations in a gallery? Because they'd have to give credits... and what does that mean for everyone here at SCS? OMGsh. Every time I think of this, I start feeling crazy.

Anyway, thanks for your answer!
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Old 09-02-2009, 05:26 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by webseitler View Post
Thanks for the info, Belinda!

Someone pointed me to some Q&A from SU! that leads me to believe that the goal of us all sending in a contract is for them to help the demos determine how best to break it. If that's the case... why bother. Sigh. What a mess!

I guess I'll have to figure out a way to work around this. We can still use our team members items in our newsletter, but I'm assuming that our girls can't then post their creations in a gallery? Because they'd have to give credits... and what does that mean for everyone here at SCS? OMGsh. Every time I think of this, I start feeling crazy.

Anyway, thanks for your answer!
The only company name a SU demo will be able to list is SU. If the use a frog stamp from XYZ company - It would have to listed as a frog stamp - no company name.
Right now we cannot even say MICHAELS,Target, Walmart - We have to say a BIG BOX STORE instead. This is why I myself will no longer be a demo.
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Old 09-02-2009, 06:52 PM   #6
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There was an online webinar from Shelli and her team tonight. It seems more specifics are being outlined. Already, some changes came about just today. I think that you DT leaders will have better answers soon from your demonstrators. SU is trying to protect their brand, as I'm sure you try to protect your brand. There are a lot of things out there right now, some are completely true, some not. I know this doesn't help you tonight but I wanted you to know that the information is being clarified.
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Old 09-02-2009, 08:18 PM   #7
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Thanks, Jennifer! I'm still holding out hope.

I totally get protecting the brand. But you girls are not employees. What you choose to do in your off time on-line is your own business, I think! I'm pretty darn shocked at this news from SU!. I think it goes far outside "protecting a brand" (especially since we're not talking about SU! demo blogs but all blogs and all sites and all commutations!).

Kinda makes me wish I was still a demo... so I could make my voice heard by quitting! LOL!
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Old 09-03-2009, 05:54 AM   #8
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I'm anxious to see if and what kind of changes they make, I am sure there will be a huge uproar. I'm not yet sure if I am going to continue as a demo. I enjoy being a SU demo so much, but I may dislike being controlled in this way even more.
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Old 09-03-2009, 04:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by webseitler View Post
Thanks, Jennifer! I'm still holding out hope.

I totally get protecting the brand. But you girls are not employees. What you choose to do in your off time on-line is your own business, I think! I'm pretty darn shocked at this news from SU!. I think it goes far outside "protecting a brand" (especially since we're not talking about SU! demo blogs but all blogs and all sites and all commutations!).

Kinda makes me wish I was still a demo... so I could make my voice heard by quitting! LOL!
You are right about that. My understanding is that when someone is an independent contractor- you can not dictate how they run their business.

You are purchasing a service from them. You contract for what you both agree to and that's that. If you try to control what they do too much, they begin to fall under the heading of "employee" and that will get you in a whole lot of hot water if you aren't paying the proper taxes on them.


One of the facts that provides evidence of an employee vs. an independent contractor is-

Behavioral: Does the company control or have the right to control what the worker does and how the worker does his or her job?

Another one is: Does the company mandate that the worker only work for them (employee) or is the worker allowed to do the same job for many companies. (Ind. Contractor)

This could all open up a whole can of worms for Stampin' Up. They may find that they actually have thousands and thousands of employees and that they owe lots of money to the IRS in the form of FICA tax on everyone who they who they are treating like employees vs. independent contractors.

From the IRS website:

1. Three characteristics are used by the IRS to determine the relationship between businesses and workers: Behavioral Control, Financial Control, and the Type of Relationship.

2. Behavioral Control covers facts that show whether the business has a right to direct or control how the work is done through instructions, training or other means.

3. Financial Control covers facts that show whether the business has a right to direct or control the financial and business aspects of the worker's job.

4. The Type of Relationship factor relates to how the workers and the business owner perceive their relationship.

5. If you have the right to control or direct not only what is to be done, but also how it is to be done, then your workers are most likely employees.

6. If you can direct or control only the result of the work done -- and not the means and methods of accomplishing the result -- then your workers are probably independent contractors.

7. Employers who misclassify workers as independent contractors can end up with substantial tax bills. Additionally, they can face penalties for failing to pay employment taxes and for failing to file required tax forms.

8. Workers can avoid higher tax bills and lost benefits if they know their proper status.


It's becoming more of a gray area when it comes to Stampin' Up. There are special rules for Statutory Nonemployees which direct sales falls under however, it is clear that you can not treat these people as employees under the guidelines set above.
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Old 09-03-2009, 04:27 PM   #10
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Gina K, you are always the voice of reason and make several great points.
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Old 09-03-2009, 05:08 PM   #11
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Gina k--you are a doll. Thanks for posting that!
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Old 09-03-2009, 05:35 PM   #12
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Well, thank you. LOL!

It's actually really important information for stamp company owners or any paper crafting business to understand before signing with a design team unless you are planning to "hire" a design team.

But I will say- I am not an attorney or an accountant and you should seek the advice of one of a professional if you have questions or concerns about your own business.

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Old 09-03-2009, 06:37 PM   #13
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Gina - Thank you so much for posting this.
I personally signed with SU last year but after all of this I will not be placing anymore orders and I consider myself and ex-demo.
There are way to many other awesome products out there for me to use. Besided - the sales of my SU stamp sets will buy me some nice NEW stamps from other places!!!
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Old 09-03-2009, 06:50 PM   #14
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I will respectfully disagree-- SU is not dictating behavior, they are asking for exclusivity. They are not saying that every demo must hold xx number of workshops, and the workshops should be run following yy template.

The contract says that the demo agrees not to "promote, market, or sell" competitive product. It doesn't even tell us (anymore) not to use competitive product (it used to ask us not to use any competetive product in any meeting with current or potential demos or customers). It just asks us not to "promote, market, or sell" it. I've looked at quite a few business owner blogs, and not one business actually links to a competitive store. That's all SU is asking of their demos in the agreement-- not to link (in ANY online media, sure) to a competitive store.

Incidental and occasional mention is ok, as long as it's not reasonably made to drive business to a the competition.

Yesterday's message to demos contained the best statement I've seen as to the entire intent of the changes:

Quote:
Simply put, we expect (and encourage!) competition from our competitors, but do not expect it from our own demonstrators, into whom we invest our resources.
Some demos have argued that they are not in it for the business-- that all they are in SU for is the discount. But SU provides the same training and basic benefits to all demos. Those that purchase only for themselves and those that are big business demos all receive the same online training, the same monthly magazine, and are offered the same opportunities to attend most of SU's training events (convention, regionals, half-day regionals, teleconferences, etc.). Yes, demos who invest more time and effort into their business receive a few added benefits (SAM, Leadership training), but the content remains the same. (I figured this out after a couple Leadership trainings-- the training was the same as many articles in the magazine, just the presentation was different. )

All SU is asking is for promotional exclusivity from their demonstrators. I personally don't think it's too much to ask for, and I've signed the IDA accordingly.
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Old 09-03-2009, 07:11 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by belindaking View Post
I will respectfully disagree-- SU is not dictating behavior, they are asking for exclusivity. They are not saying that every demo must hold xx number of workshops, and the workshops should be run following yy template.

The contract says that the demo agrees not to "promote, market, or sell" competitive product. It doesn't even tell us (anymore) not to use competitive product (it used to ask us not to use any competetive product in any meeting with current or potential demos or customers). It just asks us not to "promote, market, or sell" it. I've looked at quite a few business owner blogs, and not one business actually links to a competitive store. That's all SU is asking of their demos in the agreement-- not to link (in ANY online media, sure) to a competitive store.

Incidental and occasional mention is ok, as long as it's not reasonably made to drive business to a the competition.

Yesterday's message to demos contained the best statement I've seen as to the entire intent of the changes:



Some demos have argued that they are not in it for the business-- that all they are in SU for is the discount. But SU provides the same training and basic benefits to all demos. Those that purchase only for themselves and those that are big business demos all receive the same online training, the same monthly magazine, and are offered the same opportunities to attend most of SU's training events (convention, regionals, half-day regionals, teleconferences, etc.). Yes, demos who invest more time and effort into their business receive a few added benefits (SAM, Leadership training), but the content remains the same. (I figured this out after a couple Leadership trainings-- the training was the same as many articles in the magazine, just the presentation was different.
All SU is asking is for promotional exclusivity from their demonstrators. I personally don't think it's too much to ask for, and I've signed the IDA accordingly.
Speaking as a Hobby Demo, if I had the option to stop receiving the Stampin Success in the mail, and only being able to view it online I would be perfectly happy to save SU the $'s if that means I could still maintain my creative freedom. Also, the training, regionals and all of the teleconferences are not free, so having never been to any of those I don't see how I am costing SU any money as far as "training" goes.
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Old 09-03-2009, 07:53 PM   #16
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The point is that SU offers everything to all demos equally. There are benefits to selling more, yes, but all the basic benefits are offered to all demos. So they're going to ask the same thing from all demos: exclusivity in promotion.

Personally, I like the fact that with SU I don't have to worry about not selling enough this month to qualify as a "regular" demo versus a "junior" or "discount" demo. I still get the same discount and earning opportunity as everyone else.

I know a lot of people have asked SU for a "junior" option-- if that's something you want, I encourage you to ask also. They do listen to their demos!
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Old 09-03-2009, 10:28 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by webseitler View Post
Thanks, Jennifer! I'm still holding out hope.
I totally get protecting the brand. But you girls are not employees. What you choose to do in your off time on-line is your own business, I think! I'm pretty darn shocked at this news from SU!. I think it goes far outside "protecting a brand" (especially since we're not talking about SU! demo blogs but all blogs and all sites and all commutations!).
Kinda makes me wish I was still a demo... so I could make my voice heard by quitting! LOL!

I think anyone wanting to be heard by SU can be heard simply by sending them e-mail messages, by sending them snail mail letters, by communicating with an SU Consultant, by attenting corporate events through local Consultants etc. and making their voices heard in that manner. If SU gets enough negative feedback on this point and variations thereof, they will get the message loud and clear. The company needs to be approached as voicing opinions and such on any Internet Forum will not reach the correct powers that be. The company needs to know firsthand what people are thinking.

I, for one, would never allow a company such as this dictate to me. I would continue to run my blog, use my DT, and buy and use whatever products I choose to use to do so.

SU are not protecting their "brand" by this new policy ~ they are simply protecting their bottom line in terms of profit, and in the process are restricting talented and creative people and those that just want to have fun.

Is it worth it? Not in my view, it isn't.
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Old 09-03-2009, 10:32 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by belindaking View Post
I will respectfully disagree-- SU is not dictating behavior, they are asking for exclusivity. They are not saying that every demo must hold xx number of workshops, and the workshops should be run following yy template.

The contract says that the demo agrees not to "promote, market, or sell" competitive product. It doesn't even tell us (anymore) not to use competitive product (it used to ask us not to use any competetive product in any meeting with current or potential demos or customers). It just asks us not to "promote, market, or sell" it. I've looked at quite a few business owner blogs, and not one business actually links to a competitive store. That's all SU is asking of their demos in the agreement-- not to link (in ANY online media, sure) to a competitive store.

Incidental and occasional mention is ok, as long as it's not reasonably made to drive business to a the competition.

Yesterday's message to demos contained the best statement I've seen as to the entire intent of the changes:



Some demos have argued that they are not in it for the business-- that all they are in SU for is the discount. But SU provides the same training and basic benefits to all demos. Those that purchase only for themselves and those that are big business demos all receive the same online training, the same monthly magazine, and are offered the same opportunities to attend most of SU's training events (convention, regionals, half-day regionals, teleconferences, etc.). Yes, demos who invest more time and effort into their business receive a few added benefits (SAM, Leadership training), but the content remains the same. (I figured this out after a couple Leadership trainings-- the training was the same as many articles in the magazine, just the presentation was different. )
All SU is asking is for promotional exclusivity from their demonstrators. I personally don't think it's too much to ask for, and I've signed the IDA accordingly.

And with the training and basic discounts from SU, you can't purchase product at Michael's or mention their name in conjunction with any event or creation or technique you may dream up and wish to show off to friends, family, customers, internet pals, etc.?

Really.

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Old 09-03-2009, 10:48 PM   #19
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Not dictating behavior?!?

SU! crossed the line when they stepped past their DBWS into private blogs, facebook, and the like. There are serious First Amendment issues here.
And I truly don't appreciate the cutesy, hand-slap wording like "we certainly don't expect competition from our own demos!"

I love SU product.
I signed the IDA.
But it left a bad taste in my mouth, and I honestly don't know when I'll get over it.
I think SU will regret this one.

If you don't have a problem with the changes, that's great. I envy you.
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Old 09-04-2009, 12:16 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by belindaking View Post
I will respectfully disagree-- SU is not dictating behavior, they are asking for exclusivity. They are not saying that every demo must hold xx number of workshops, and the workshops should be run following yy template.

The contract says that the demo agrees not to "promote, market, or sell" competitive product. It doesn't even tell us (anymore) not to use competitive product (it used to ask us not to use any competetive product in any meeting with current or potential demos or customers). It just asks us not to "promote, market, or sell" it. I've looked at quite a few business owner blogs, and not one business actually links to a competitive store. That's all SU is asking of their demos in the agreement-- not to link (in ANY online media, sure) to a competitive store.

Incidental and occasional mention is ok, as long as it's not reasonably made to drive business to a the competition.

Yesterday's message to demos contained the best statement I've seen as to the entire intent of the changes:

Some demos have argued that they are not in it for the business-- that all they are in SU for is the discount. But SU provides the same training and basic benefits to all demos. Those that purchase only for themselves and those that are big business demos all receive the same online training, the same monthly magazine, and are offered the same opportunities to attend most of SU's training events (convention, regionals, half-day regionals, teleconferences, etc.). Yes, demos who invest more time and effort into their business receive a few added benefits (SAM, Leadership training), but the content remains the same. (I figured this out after a couple Leadership trainings-- the training was the same as many articles in the magazine, just the presentation was different. )

All SU is asking is for promotional exclusivity from their demonstrators. I personally don't think it's too much to ask for, and I've signed the IDA accordingly.
Belinda - I know you are a very active SU demo, promoting your business and I totally understand that being SUO is the right thing for your business, but as a 'hobby' demo I view things differently.

SU is not 'asking' for exclusivity - they are demanding it. If a demo does not sign the new IDA they and their customers cannot place an order with SU (on their demo's DWBS).

When I was recruited by my upline, it was because I wanted to purchase a lot. I said no to her several times because I had absolutely no interest in promoting or selling SU products. She advised that my only commitment was to meet my 1/4ly quotas. Since I have joined I have met all my quotas myself - I have no customers (by choice). I do not promote SU products and I have no loyalties to SU - I have and use products from several companies (GinaK is one of my favs! - good thing I haven't signed the new IDA yet as I wouldn't be able to say this).

I will continue to share who and where I get my supplies - just like I do when I use SU products. (If I have someone show interest in purchasing SU products I link them to the SU site and my upline).

I am not an employee of SU, they don't pay me, they simply give me a discount for committing to purchase set minimums.

Regarding the other benefits - as someone not interested in promoting SU - the majority of the magazine, trainings, conferences, website information are of no use to me. My magazine goes from the mailbox to the recycling box. I agree with Ronie that I would be happy to stop receiving it in the mail.

I am going to see what happens over the next few weeks and see how much more back pedaling SU does before I decide what to do - but I do not plan on signing the new IDA the way it reads now. If I resign as a demo, SU will probably lose my business as I will not pay full price for their product, my upline will lose as she is trying to earn the cruise but the other companies will win - as I will have more money to spend elsewhere.

This is not meant as negative against SU - obviously I like the products and buy enough to meet my quotas - I just like other companies as well, and have no intention of not expressing what I like.
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Old 09-04-2009, 12:30 AM   #21
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Hi, girls! I need some clarification from those "in the know!"

I run design team blog for my digital scrapbooking shop. We have several girls on our team who are SU! demos. Now, as I read some of the language in the new IDA (specifically the stuff I was reading on Cynthia Townley's blog here), it sounds like these girls on my team are either going to have to give up their SU! demonstratorship or give up our design team (because the posts they make on our blog promote the items in our shop). Goodness gracious! Seriously? Please, someone--tell me I'm reading this wrong and that they can still be a part of our blog team!

Much appreciated! Can you believe this craziness? But I'll leave my 2 cents out of this. I just want to know if I'm being forced to find new team members.

Sorry Nicole - I hijacked your post with my response above.

Regarding your op - I am afraid the fears you expressed are correct. But I have heard a lot of demos are considering resigning from SU and choosing to remain on their DT. Maybe you won't lose too many of your team members.

Just think - there may be a lot of extra 'stamp' money looking for a new home due to these changes.

Hopefully this isn't too challenging for you and others with DT.
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Old 09-04-2009, 06:50 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by belindaking View Post
I will respectfully disagree-- SU is not dictating behavior, they are asking for exclusivity. They are not saying that every demo must hold xx number of workshops, and the workshops should be run following yy template.

The contract says that the demo agrees not to "promote, market, or sell" competitive product. It doesn't even tell us (anymore) not to use competitive product (it used to ask us not to use any competetive product in any meeting with current or potential demos or customers). It just asks us not to "promote, market, or sell" it. I've looked at quite a few business owner blogs, and not one business actually links to a competitive store. That's all SU is asking of their demos in the agreement-- not to link (in ANY online media, sure) to a competitive store.

Incidental and occasional mention is ok, as long as it's not reasonably made to drive business to a the competition.

Yesterday's message to demos contained the best statement I've seen as to the entire intent of the changes:



Some demos have argued that they are not in it for the business-- that all they are in SU for is the discount. But SU provides the same training and basic benefits to all demos. Those that purchase only for themselves and those that are big business demos all receive the same online training, the same monthly magazine, and are offered the same opportunities to attend most of SU's training events (convention, regionals, half-day regionals, teleconferences, etc.). Yes, demos who invest more time and effort into their business receive a few added benefits (SAM, Leadership training), but the content remains the same. (I figured this out after a couple Leadership trainings-- the training was the same as many articles in the magazine, just the presentation was different. )

All SU is asking is for promotional exclusivity from their demonstrators. I personally don't think it's too much to ask for, and I've signed the IDA accordingly.
Hi Belinda,
I don't know if you were directing your post at me but let me just say for the record that I have no opinion either way about what Stampin' Up choses to do with their business, contracts or employees. I was only stating some information from the IRS website as it pertains to independent contractors vs. employees.

When I was a Stampin' Up Demonstrator many moons ago, I signed a contract with them that did not have any verbiage regarding what I was allowed to do with any of my personal time on or off the web.

So, I only posted this information for those who have the new IDA. Since I have not seen it, I can't state my opinion. I can only say that if what is being talked about here is true, then it is a gray area as far as crossing the independent contractor line.

As a stamp company owner, I have designed a stamp set that works with the Stampin' Up Word Window Punch and Circle Punch. I actually have listed on my store website that SU punches work with this stamp set:

http://www.shop.ginakdesigns.com/pro...&categoryId=37

I also noticed that other stamp companies have mentioned Stampin' Up when they have released stamp sets that work with SU products because we all know that people love Stampin' Up and love products that work with things they already have in their collection.

I just don't want anyone to think that I stand in judgement of Stampin' Up. I certainly do not. I personally love the company's products and have lots of it in my own collection. I think that Shelli Gardner is a pioneer in the industry and a brilliant business woman. SU has introduced stamping to hundreds of thousands of people worldwide.

The thing that saddens me about all of this is how many talented and creative stampers like Beate, Cindy and so many more are struggling with decisions on which way to go. It would be nice if they could continue to do both because they certainly inspire so many to purchase SU items through their tutorials, videos, project samples and gallery uploads.

At the same time, if I use Stampin' Up product for my project, I give the company credit in the gallery. As a business owner, I would expect the same courtesy in return.

I wish you all well with your decisions.

Hugs,
Gina K.
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Last edited by Gina K. Designs; 09-04-2009 at 06:52 AM.. Reason: Spelled Shelli's name wrong
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:15 AM   #23
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Gina, I'll give you FULL credit all over the internet if you want me to design for you.


just sayin'
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:21 AM   #24
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Originally Posted by Gina K. Designs View Post
Hi Belinda,
I don't know if you were directing your post at me but let me just say for the record that I have no opinion either way about what Stampin' Up choses to do with their business, contracts or employees. I was only stating some information from the IRS website as it pertains to independent contractors vs. employees.

When I was a Stampin' Up Demonstrator many moons ago, I signed a contract with them that did not have any verbiage regarding what I was allowed to do with any of my personal time on or off the web.

So, I only posted this information for those who have the new IDA. Since I have not seen it, I can't state my opinion. I can only say that if what is being talked about here is true, then it is a gray area as far as crossing the independent contractor line.

As a stamp company owner, I have designed a stamp set that works with the Stampin' Up Word Window Punch and Circle Punch. I actually have listed on my store website that SU punches work with this stamp set:

http://www.shop.ginakdesigns.com/pro...&categoryId=37

I also noticed that other stamp companies have mentioned Stampin' Up when they have released stamp sets that work with SU products because we all know that people love Stampin' Up and love products that work with things they already have in their collection.


I just don't want anyone to think that I stand in judgement of Stampin' Up. I certainly do not. I personally love the company's products and have lots of it in my own collection. I think that Shelli Gardner is a pioneer in the industry and a brilliant business woman. SU has introduced stamping to hundreds of thousands of people worldwide.

The thing that saddens me about all of this is how many talented and creative stampers like Beate, Cindy and so many more are struggling with decisions on which way to go. It would be nice if they could continue to do both because they certainly inspire so many to purchase SU items through their tutorials, videos, project samples and gallery uploads.

At the same time, if I use Stampin' Up product for my project, I give the company credit in the gallery. As a business owner, I would expect the same courtesy in return.

I wish you all well with your decisions.

Hugs,
Gina K.
This is JUST was I was about to say Gina! A LOT of other stamp companies specifically mention the names of the products and unique papers SU sells, helping to generate business for SU to some degree and give credit to SU when doing so, in a professional manner. I think it is... unprofessional? Unfair? not sure of the correct verbage here, but simply doesn't pas the 'sniff test' to hope that others, demos and customers alike, will credit SU when their products are used but not extend the same courtesy to the other companies.

I too think highly of Shelli. I just think SU hasn't quite gotten it right on this one.

And Belinda, I also have the utmost respect for you as well, so I sincerely hope you will not take offense to this, but IMO, when one restricts behavior, which asking for exclusivity does, this does dictate behavior in a sense. That is just how I see it. I do hope SU makes some further revisions to the new IDA and that the current version is not the final version.

And Gina, your employee/agent vs. private contractor explanation was spot on!
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:50 AM   #25
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I myself will always give credit to company that makes the products I use when post card and projects. I do the same in swaps as I always write out a recipe list of the items I use. It is respectful to do this.
My big thing with SU as they are 'suggesting' demos do not this. they want then to be a vague as possible like using the word big box store and generic name for stamps and not stating the comapny. This i have a problem with as all companies desrve that same respect and I will continue to give that respect.
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Old 09-04-2009, 07:59 AM   #26
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I myself will always give credit to company that makes the products I use when post card and projects. I do the same in swaps as I always write out a recipe list of the items I use. It is respectful to do this.
My big thing with SU as they are 'suggesting' demos do not this. they want then to be a vague as possible like using the word big box store and generic name for stamps and not stating the comapny. This i have a problem with as all companies desrve that same respect and I will continue to give that respect.
I agree 100% with this. So if I decide to continue with SU, as a matter of personal principal, I will just have to stop using all other stamp companies, but SU! Because I am not going to make something, and be so disrespectful to the creator of that stamp, to say "I created this with some generic stamp I picked up somewhere".
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Old 09-04-2009, 08:39 AM   #27
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The point is that SU offers everything to all demos equally.
Technically, no, they didn't. Not on this one. They offered the confidential information about the upcoming contract to Sr. Executives and above, allowing "higher level" demos an unfair advantage over "lower level" demos to get their DT contracts in place before the first of Sept.

This sent a very negative message to demos below the Sr. Exec level that not all demos are treated equally. I personally don't think this was SU's intention and I don't think that SU thought out of the ramifications of this decision to alert Sr. Execs and above, but more times than not, actions speak louder than words.

This information should have either been given to all or none before the 1st of Sept. This was information that impacts all of us in an equal way, therefore, it should have been announced in an equal way.
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Old 09-04-2009, 09:54 AM   #28
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Technically, no, they didn't. Not on this one. They offered the confidential information about the upcoming contract to Sr. Executives and above, allowing "higher level" demos an unfair advantage over "lower level" demos to get their DT contracts in place before the first of Sept.

This sent a very negative message to demos below the Sr. Exec level that not all demos are treated equally. I personally don't think this was SU's intention and I don't think that SU thought out of the ramifications of this decision to alert Sr. Execs and above, but more times than not, actions speak louder than words.

This information should have either been given to all or none before the 1st of Sept. This was information that impacts all of us in an equal way, therefore, it should have been announced in an equal way.
I am not saying that you aren't correct in much of your statement above, but SU has been repeatedly criticized for NOT making the announcement internally before they announced it to all demonstrators to have averted some of this confusion and dissent and had some demonstrator input. I think that just proves the point that it doesn't matter how SU handles something they are going to be chastised for it. You simply can not please everybody and even if you get close, some people are going to look for reasons to criticize SU.

Belinda
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Old 09-04-2009, 10:09 AM   #29
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I am not saying that you aren't correct in much of your statement above, but SU has been repeatedly criticized for NOT making the announcement internally before they announced it to all demonstrators to have averted some of this confusion and dissent and had some demonstrator input. I think that just proves the point that it doesn't matter how SU handles something they are going to be chastised for it. You simply can not please everybody and even if you get close, some people are going to look for reasons to criticize SU.

Belinda
Everybody deals with the fact that "you're damned if you do and damned if you don't" in some area of their life some time or another. I don't pretend to think that SU can please everybody all or at least some of the time.

Neither am I looking for a reason to criticize SU. The fact of the matter is, they did give some demos an unfair advantage over others by allowing top level demos know ahead of time. There's no way around that.

Again, I don't think they intended to do this, I just don't think they thought their actions through fully enough to know how it would come across to others lower on the totem pole.

There's no doubt about it that even if they had told everyone ahead of time or no one ahead of time that there would be some or many that would not have been pleased with the new IDA, but I definitely think that less feelings would have been hurt if they announced it to all or none ahead of time.

That is the main point I'm making here. Not about whether some like the IDA or not.
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Old 09-04-2009, 10:40 AM   #30
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Everybody deals with the fact that "you're damned if you do and damned if you don't" in some area of their life some time or another. I don't pretend to think that SU can please everybody all or at least some of the time.

Neither am I looking for a reason to criticize SU. The fact of the matter is, they did give some demos an unfair advantage over others by allowing top level demos know ahead of time. There's no way around that.

Again, I don't think they intended to do this, I just don't think they thought their actions through fully enough to know how it would come across to others lower on the totem pole.

There's no doubt about it that even if they had told everyone ahead of time or no one ahead of time that there would be some or many that would not have been pleased with the new IDA, but I definitely think that less feelings would have been hurt if they announced it to all or none ahead of time.

That is the main point I'm making here. Not about whether some like the IDA or not.
Erika,
I didn't mean to imply you personally were looking for a reason to criticize SU. That wasn't directed at any individual. I think you made a simple statement of fact and your perception of it is different than mine. Neither of us are privy to the thoughts of the real people who chose to handle it that way, so we can't speak to their motives, but it makes sense to me that they could have been trying to work out some of the kinks internally by doing it that way. In any case, I don't see it as an unfair advantage for anyone, because we all have a month to decide and that is plenty of time to make a decision and if you are directly affected as a design team member, then technically you are being given time past the deadline to fulfill your contracts and work out the kinks, provided you are beginning now to work with SU to do so.

And yes we all deal with the "damned" thing but in 11 years I have not seen one situation where SU did not get criticized as if it were the end of the world no matter how they handle something. There are actually people who complain when they get a free gift from SU, because they didn't get to pick it out themselves. I'll bet Christmas is fun for the spouses of those ladies, lol

Belinda
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Old 09-04-2009, 10:44 AM   #31
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Everybody deals with the fact that "you're damned if you do and damned if you don't" in some area of their life some time or another. I don't pretend to think that SU can please everybody all or at least some of the time.

Neither am I looking for a reason to criticize SU. The fact of the matter is, they did give some demos an unfair advantage over others by allowing top level demos know ahead of time. There's no way around that.

Again, I don't think they intended to do this, I just don't think they thought their actions through fully enough to know how it would come across to others lower on the totem pole.

There's no doubt about it that even if they had told everyone ahead of time or no one ahead of time that there would be some or many that would not have been pleased with the new IDA, but I definitely think that less feelings would have been hurt if they announced it to all or none ahead of time.

That is the main point I'm making here. Not about whether some like the IDA or not.
Erika,
I didn't mean to imply you personally were looking for a reason to criticize SU. That wasn't directed at any individual. I think you made a simple statement of fact and your perception of it is different than mine. Neither of us are privy to the thoughts of the real people who chose to handle it that way, so we can't speak to their motives, but it makes sense to me that they could have been trying to work out some of the kinks internally by doing it that way. In any case, I don't see it as an unfair advantage for anyone, because we all have a month to decide and that is plenty of time to make a decision and if you are directly affected as a design team member, then technically you are being given time past the deadline to fulfill your contracts and work out the kinks, provided you are beginning now to work with SU to do so.

And yes we all deal with the "damned" thing but in 11 years I have not seen one situation where SU did not get criticized as if it were the end of the world no matter how they handle something. There are actually people who complain when they get a free gift from SU, because they didn't get to pick it out themselves. I'll bet Christmas is fun for the spouses of those ladies, lol

Belinda
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Old 09-04-2009, 10:44 AM   #32
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Technically, no, they didn't. Not on this one. They offered the confidential information about the upcoming contract to Sr. Executives and above, allowing "higher level" demos an unfair advantage over "lower level" demos to get their DT contracts in place before the first of Sept.

This sent a very negative message to demos below the Sr. Exec level that not all demos are treated equally. I personally don't think this was SU's intention and I don't think that SU thought out of the ramifications of this decision to alert Sr. Execs and above, but more times than not, actions speak louder than words.

This information should have either been given to all or none before the 1st of Sept. This was information that impacts all of us in an equal way, therefore, it should have been announced in an equal way.
Very interesting!!!!!
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Old 09-04-2009, 10:46 AM   #33
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Technically, no, they didn't. Not on this one. They offered the confidential information about the upcoming contract to Sr. Executives and above, allowing "higher level" demos an unfair advantage over "lower level" demos to get their DT contracts in place before the first of Sept.

This sent a very negative message to demos below the Sr. Exec level that not all demos are treated equally. I personally don't think this was SU's intention and I don't think that SU thought out of the ramifications of this decision to alert Sr. Execs and above, but more times than not, actions speak louder than words.

This information should have either been given to all or none before the 1st of Sept. This was information that impacts all of us in an equal way, therefore, it should have been announced in an equal way.
Very interesting!!!!!
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Old 09-04-2009, 11:00 AM   #34
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Erika,
I didn't mean to imply you personally were looking for a reason to criticize SU. That wasn't directed at any individual. I think you made a simple statement of fact and your perception of it is different than mine. Neither of us are privy to the thoughts of the real people who chose to handle it that way, so we can't speak to their motives, but it makes sense to me that they could have been trying to work out some of the kinks internally by doing it that way. In any case, I don't see it as an unfair advantage for anyone, because we all have a month to decide and that is plenty of time to make a decision and if you are directly affected as a design team member, then technically you are being given time past the deadline to fulfill your contracts and work out the kinks, provided you are beginning now to work with SU to do so.
Yes, we all have a month to decide if we want to sign the IDA or not. But those that were aware of the change before 9/1/09 had time to get their design team contracts in place before the change to get grandfathered in where others weren't. I think this is one of the main issues that people have with only certain demos being made aware of this before it was publicly announced.
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Old 09-04-2009, 11:59 AM   #35
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Yes, we all have a month to decide if we want to sign the IDA or not. But those that were aware of the change before 9/1/09 had time to get their design team contracts in place before the change to get grandfathered in where others weren't. I think this is one of the main issues that people have with only certain demos being made aware of this before it was publicly announced.
OK, I see what you mean now. I guess I just assumed that if you were already on a DT you were already under a contract or agreement. I guess I am not sure, why one would want to get into a contract knowing you would only be able to do it for a short time longer, but I can see how that would ease the transition. I know it is a tough deal for everyone. SU has given Sr execs advance info on a lot of things for quite some time, I am thinking this might just be another one of those instances. It wouldn't do for a demo with a downline of hundreds of demonstrators calling asking for details to have no information to help clarify things and there aren't enough demo support personnel or phone lines at SU to answer 40, 000 calls in one day, so perhaps that was their motivation.
In any event, I do feel deeply for all of you facing this tough decision.

Belinda
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Old 09-04-2009, 01:57 PM   #36
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OK, I see what you mean now. I guess I just assumed that if you were already on a DT you were already under a contract or agreement. I guess I am not sure, why one would want to get into a contract knowing you would only be able to do it for a short time longer, but I can see how that would ease the transition. I know it is a tough deal for everyone. SU has given Sr execs advance info on a lot of things for quite some time, I am thinking this might just be another one of those instances. It wouldn't do for a demo with a downline of hundreds of demonstrators calling asking for details to have no information to help clarify things and there aren't enough demo support personnel or phone lines at SU to answer 40, 000 calls in one day, so perhaps that was their motivation.
In any event, I do feel deeply for all of you facing this tough decision.

Belinda
Not all design teams have contracts. Some are just on good faith. Others require a contract as they are a larger company. For those that have a contract, they are good for a little while. Those that didn't have one before Sept. 1st can still be on a DT, but they'll have to play by the rules of the IDA and to be honest, what DT is going to want someone on their team that can't link back to them?

There's different reasons why someone would want to sign a contract for a little while longer.

DT members enjoy being part of the team. They love the diversity of the paper crafting world and enjoy creating with things other than SU. They want to continue for as long as they can under the terms of the DT contract.

Some DT members might already have unreleased product that they've been creating with in anticipation of an upcoming release. Since this product has already been opened and used, it can't be sold. These members might have also committed to a challenge or release party or blog hop and want to honor those commitments.

While some of the people in favor of the IDA say that they don't believe a company would make their SU designers pay for used product that they can't show and link to on their blogs, that's an assumption that none of us can make. Some companies send close to or over $100 worth of product to their team members each month. That's a loss either way you look at it and a company might tell the designer to keep it, knowing it's not their fault that they agreed in good faith (according to the older IDA) to be part of the team and meet certain obligations, and are now stuck between a rock and a hard place not of their making or choosing. But....the company does have a right to ask for payment for used supplies if they so choose. That's up to the company to decide, not other demos who think that the company should understand.

I do understand that SU has given higher level demos advance information and have even asked for input on decisions, but this is something that gave certain demos and unfair advantage, not just telling about a new product coming up or a new career plan. I also understand that it would be hard to accommodate calls from thousands of demos that wanted clarification on the policy before it was fully released....yet another reason it should have remained silent to all or public to all. One or the other, but not just to a certain number of demos. The fact that it was found out that it was given to a certain level of demos is what has caused the hurt feelings.
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Old 09-04-2009, 02:16 PM   #37
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And with the training and basic discounts from SU, you can't purchase product at Michael's or mention their name in conjunction with any event or creation or technique you may dream up and wish to show off to friends, family, customers, internet pals, etc.?

Really.

But SU has NOT said you can't shop at Michaels, they have NOT said you can't buy/use propducts from competetors, they haven't said you can't show off your creations to family, friends, and internet pals. All they have said is that you can't PROMOTE these companys by linking to their websites where a customer/potential customer can place an order.
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Old 09-04-2009, 02:20 PM   #38
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Erika,
Thanks for taking the time to enlighten us from that perspective. As you said earlier, no matter whether SU had thought of that or not, I can see where some demo's would feel disadvantaged.

I am wondering if those in some of the scenarios you described went to SU and explained that even without a contract, there would be a loss for either the designer or the design team of a monetary nature, that they may consider those on a one on one basis. That may not be a written contract, but many monetary transactions are considered a contract by the courts. It was my understanding that they were working one on one with people depending on their situations. It would be worth a try anyway.

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Old 09-04-2009, 02:27 PM   #39
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Erika:

While I might disagree with many of the posters on the "unfairness" of the overall new IDA, I do agree with you that giving the upper level demonstrators a heads up on the DT issue dis, in fact, give them an unfair advantage. My only question, not that it should make that much difference, but I am also wondering how many higher level demonstrators are also on DT? To me, it would seem that if you are running your SU business at a certain level, you simply do not have the time to put into being on a DT. I, of course could be wrong, but that's my perception and if my perception is correct then no one affected by the DT aspects were really given the heads up.
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Old 09-04-2009, 03:07 PM   #40
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Location: Wild Woods of Vermont
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Quote:
Originally Posted by STAMPINGODDESS View Post
Erika:

While I might disagree with many of the posters on the "unfairness" of the overall new IDA, I do agree with you that giving the upper level demonstrators a heads up on the DT issue dis, in fact, give them an unfair advantage. My only question, not that it should make that much difference, but I am also wondering how many higher level demonstrators are also on DT? To me, it would seem that if you are running your SU business at a certain level, you simply do not have the time to put into being on a DT. I, of course could be wrong, but that's my perception and if my perception is correct then no one affected by the DT aspects were really given the heads up.
You might actually be surprised as to how many upper level demos are on design teams. Being on the teams (which don't have a huge amount of work load attached to them) actually gives more visibility to many of these demos and has helped their business. I know that it has for mine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by STAMPINGODDESS View Post
I, of course could be wrong, but that's my perception and if my perception is correct then no one affected by the DT aspects were really given the heads up.
And therein lies part of the problem.

Some of these girls *are* on design teams and *did* have the advantage. But also, many DT members are not Sr. Exec and above and weren't given the notice and *are* affected by it.

No matter how you look at it, both levels (upper and higher) were affected by this. Some were clued in, but the majority weren't.
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Erika Martin * Vermont * SU! Demo * My blog: Stampin' Mama


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