Status Report: Webcraft Is On Ice

February 1st, 2009 | The Company

In a nutshell, Webcraft Studios is on ice – as in long term storage. My big 2008 client reported that my social media marketing campaign yielded better results for less money than another similar project running for another of their products. The other campaign was an ARG while my campaign was Digital Theatrics. Near the end of the project, I suddenly received a request to freeze all activity. Turns out, my client was bought out by South Peak Interactive.

When the buyout occured, I’d just submitted my second invoice. I was still awaiting payment on the first invoice. Ultimately, Southpeak has refused to pay on any of the invoices. I have since learned that they’ve been treating many of the smaller contractors the same way. With more than $9,000 in subcontractor fees piled up during the project, no payment from Southpeak, and all of my savings gone, I was left in financial despair.

In the middle of January, I took on a gig that put me into an office m-f working for a salary. It’s a good gig working for a stable company on a significant project. Unfortunately, it puts me back into active Web development (mostly back end) and far far away from social media (my current area of interest). It also destroys the mobile lifestyle I was working so hard to build for myself.

On the upside, I will soon be in a financial place to pay my legal council to pursue payment from Southpeak. I must admit, the amazing and blatantly unethical business practices of Southpeak really shook my world. For weeks I found myself feeling physically ill over the way I’d been treated. I felt that, if this is how business is done, I want no part of it. I have since heard other business individuals who have worked with Southpeak call them “criminals”.

What bothers me the most is knowing that, ultimately, the effort me and my team made sold product. I helped sell the product; and that success will put money in the pocket of the company that… well… ripped me off.

Still, I find myself working on small bits of Webcraft on the side. A little here, a bit there… So while the Webraft effort, on the whole, is on ice for a while – I suspect it’s not over. I have multiple projects with a bit of potential in the pipes. I also keep blogging. I still can’t seem to stop dreaming. Hopefully, I’ll also keep doing. I look forward to writing a post, some day, talking about how Webcraft is taking off again.

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