A bit of bad news about missing rewards as we head into Chinese New Year.
As previously mentioned, we ran out of "Art of" books at the same time we learned of many backers (especially at the $115 tier) not receiving books when their rewards were delivered. As I dug into the situation, I discovered an error in the way BackerKit responses had translated into the packing lists we used to fill orders. The system translated a survey response as an order, meaning that as we collected results, we had instances where many backers were sent 2 DVDs, or 2 "Art of" books. At the same time, the original setup of the $115 tier was incomplete, meaning that many people didn't get books (although because of the survey result counting as an order, many did).
We now have lots of backers who should have received 1 disc and 1 book with 2 discs and 2 books. And a small group of backers who should have received 1 disc, 1 book who have 2 discs and no book!
It sucks. And I am sorry to those people who have yet to receive their books. While there was a chain of mistakes that led to the final result, I take the blame for not spending more effort on cross-checking the packing list with the tier selections. That final (and relatively easy) check, could have saved us all this trouble.
Now... the latest obstacle. Yesterday, the factory where we produce our books informed us they don't want to fulfill the order we previously sent them (which we were expecting to receive this week or last). They, like many factories in China, are suffering as a result of the economic slowdown. In response, they're engaging in "soft layoffs," which is where they give employees extended (unpaid) vacations in order to reduce costs. Many factories in China are extending the upcoming Chinese New Year holiday to cover a period of nearly a month, starting next week. We're even getting push-back from our box makers! They're either refusing our orders or tripling their costs to discourage us from placing an order at this time.
What does all this mean for those of you who still don't have your "Art of" books?
We're going to have to wait until after Chinese New Year before we can order new books (and boxes). That means we'll re-send our order around mid-January, wait 2 weeks for it to be filled, then start shipping missing rewards around start of March.
Those of you who haven't received your "Art of" books, again, I apologize. I know the situation is ridiculous and unacceptable. Your messages to me about missing rewards have been received and recorded - and just as soon as we get hands on new books, I will take care of getting them out to you.
From Shanghai with mafan (trouble),