Medicine Hat Media

A Different View of The Monarch

There’s been a lot of controversy over the whole Monarch debacle, and there hasn’t been a lot of public information on the CCDA’s side of things until now. Our friends at CHAT TV who periodically release great content from their news broadcasts on to YouTube share their latest clip entitled “Downtown Dispute”. This video shows a bit of the CCDA’s position, where they contend, that the design expenses were never approved, so it was never officially in their budget (which was getting more and more thin as the renovations progressed). Their position is that “nobody knew about” the $9000 bill which was submitted at the end of the year by Amy of Rapscallion, and not a monthly invoice they would have thought to receive for any expenses. It seems a bit more fair on the CCDA’s perspective now.

Something still strikes me as odd though, considering they were using the posters, promotional materials, the logo and the website. Although it wasn’t stated in the video, it would be assumed, that of all these projects being done by Rapscallion was considered, by the board, to be volunteer work? It seems like a lot of work to be considered volunteering; was it never discussed? Months and months of separate pieces of work was never brought up and the payment for said pieces? I think some of the story is still missing here. Furthermore, they are still using some of the original content including the logo; albeit, an extracted/copied version. Who owns the intellectual property rights? If there was no invoice or payment, was there any contractual release of property rights?

User Comments

5 Responses to “A Different View of The Monarch”

  1. April 2nd, 2010 at 10:47 AM

    Sean says:

    I find it weird that there was “a new website” being developed especially if the first was never commissioned. The first one anyway looked a whole lot cooler than the second that was in the video.

  2. April 2nd, 2010 at 5:35 PM

    Larry says:

    It’s too bad this situation has to take place but this isn’t the first dispute of its kind between designers versus business owners. It has happened to me more times than I care to remember. Having a quick look at the work Amy did for the CCDA through links in these posts I would suggest she produced a very nice product and should, if an agreement was in place, be compensated for it.

    In watching the CHAT video it seems clear to me as well that the “Whole Story” isn’t being told by either side. One thing about the CCDA statement in the video can be put to rights, web site and graphic design work often get billed at the end of a project or close to it. It is the nature of the business I have grudgingly come to accept . To say that Amy should have been submitting progress invoices is rather unrealistic given the nature of her work. If it was me, working on a project I had a personal belief in, as it seems to be the case in Amy’s situation, I may have done it the same way so the Monarch could have access to promotional material to advertise their presence and get the ball rolling. Regardless, Amy should be compensated for her work, be it used or shelved.

    I could say more about this situation but will not because it would be based on supposition rather than fact. I would suggest all concerned parties take a break, take a deep breath and then sit down and work this out. The only person that needs a lawyer is the one that thinks they may not be right.

  3. April 2nd, 2010 at 6:00 PM

    Larry says:

    One other point and then I will be done with this subject. . .

    Without meaning to insult anyone or trying to be adversarial, I am a little disappointed with the disparaging comments being put forth about the “Second Web Site” throughout this little saga. I think Amy had an expectation of reasonable compensation for her web site work, I will bet the second guy had it made clear he would not be receiving said same.

    Focus on the work Amy of Rapscallion did for the CCDA and not the quality of what others may have or have not done.

  4. April 3rd, 2010 at 9:10 AM

    Taylor says:

    I just went over Amy’s write-up on the rapscallion site again, and after hearing more of the CCDA’s side I can’t say I blame them entirely for the actions they’ve taken. Amy repeatedly used the words “donate” and “volunteer” with little discretion. Actually toward the end of the write-up it was difficult to make out what she claimed to be commissioned for and what was volunteer work. In fact, I’m not even sure she made the distinction in a clear-cut way. Perhaps if she expected to be paid she shouldn’t have given such a strong impression that she was donating much of the design she did (“Monarch logo, letterhead, initial webpage, business cards, gift cards, membership cards, and brochures”). Obviously one does not get paid for volunteer work, and unless I’m missing something she has listed most things she designed as “donations”. Please correct me if I’m wrong…

  5. April 3rd, 2010 at 12:44 PM

    Jeff says:

    Taylor, you are correct in that people do not get paid for volunteer work, and this is definitely the stance the CCDA is taking. Without a contract in place from Amy, and that being their legal standpoint, there’s no real way around that, done deal.

    Amy has publicly stated from the very start to this day that getting paid isn’t her big concern. This whole dispute is something that Amy can publicly address outside of the confidentiality agreements of the CCDA, to bring awareness to the fact that there are some serious issues with both the CCDA and The Monarch Theatre.

    From my perspective, there are 2 young people that were very instrumental in The Monarch Theatre being brought back to life, both have been used for their services and now tossed aside. And no matter what the CCDA is saying, anyone who has been to theatre in the last 3 months knows what kind of business they are really doing.

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