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Friday, August 7, 2009

Update to "Dreads Damaging?"

Hello Bloggers,

In an effort to have transparent communication I am posting the e-mails I received and my response to of . In the post Dreads Damaging? , I addressed Susan (author/owner) about step number 8 in her highly acclaimed Ultimate Guide to Growing Long Hair, which is seriously comprehensive and has great tips. I invite you to read and follow her advice for growing healthy hair.

My only problem with the guide was in step 8.

She has since changed this statement regarding dreads


"Dreads almost always have to be cut off to be removed and are tremendously damaging to hair."

To :

"Also, if you choose to style your hair in dreads, please consider it to be a permanent change. While the dreads themselves will remain healthy (in fact, many find this a great way to grow otherwise "ungrowable" hair), they unfortunately almost always have to be cut off to be removed and the hair involved usually cannot be "undreaded."

This is tons better! Kudos to Susan for making the improvements.

I erroneously stated that she did not reply to me immediately. She did! My spam filter blocked her e-mail. I apologize to her and to you for my inaccuracy.

Here is my response to her below:


Thanks for your responses. I apologize for not replying sooner. I greatly appreciate your responses.

First, I'd like to clear some misunderstandings. My intention was not to ridicule you. As I wrote previously, my intention was to have a mutually beneficial dialogue about something you posted that was referenced in a national magazine. Lucky magazine initiated the public forum as I would not have read or even heard about your guide otherwise. I feel, along with my readers, that there was some ambiguity and negativity regarding this statement:

"Dreads almost always have to be cut off to be removed and are tremendously damaging to hair."

You have since, both changed this statement and educated me about my misunderstanding your sentence. I am happy you saw fit to change the statement; and I apologize you feel I misinterpreted your words and acted unfairly. The reason I didn't see your immediate response is because of my spam filter on my gmail account. I take full responsibility for this and apologize sincerely for not realizing that you responded.

Again, I think your guide, hair recipes, and hair accessories are all great. I appreciate you doing the research and corresponding with me. I wish you happiness, peace, and great fortune with your business.



This is her previous response to me:

Sophia, I am resending this as you state erroneously on your blog that I did not send you a response, which as you can see below, is incorrect.

If I have been misinformed by the many who have confirmed for me that removing dreads cannot usually be done at all, much less without leaving seriously damaged hair, I will be more than happy to change my article once I have substantiated information from a trusted professional source. I happen to love dreads and have absolutely nothing against them, and many of my long-time customers have absolutely beautiful dreads. Again, my statement referred only to removing them, not actually wearing them, and was well-researched before being included in my article.

There is nothing appropriate about ridiculing me in a public forum for something that is apparently a misunderstanding on your part, especially without including the response you were previously sent, and I hope you accept the responsibility of correcting your error. I have no hard feelings, as I do feel this was an honest mistake on your part, but I really don’t feel you are being fair in your representation of me nor or LongLocks, and would like to see this end on a happy note. Long hair, *any* kind or style of long hair, is *always* a good thing!

And this is her first e-mail reply to my post:

I think you misunderstood the statement. In order to be *removed* from hair, dreads almost always need to be cut off. Also, the hair that is actually in the dreads is destroyed and cannot be “undreaded.” Don’t worry, I always do my research first!

I have removed your comments from my blog, which really has nothing to do with LongLocks. You’ll find a “contact us” link in the menu on the left-hand side of every page of the LongLocks HairSticks Boutique if you need to grab our attention about anything LongLocks related.

As always, I am interested in your thoughts. Please share.


Happiest Nappy said...

Sophia, you ROCK. This is a great example of effective communication amongst willing adults to achieve a result that is beneficial for all...a WIN-WIN situation. She won't lose any readers (hopefully) and information delivered pertaining to Locs will be closer to accurate.

Get it then Sophia!

EmberRose said...

The situation turned out well. I agree with her emails and statements. Overall it could have been handled more professionally but it turned out.

Naturally Sophia said...

Ember Rose- I hate not handling situations professionally. What would you have done differently? I thought I did the best I could give the situation. Please explain.

longlocks said...

I agree Sophia, you rock! Thank you for coming through with your transparency, it's very commendable of you.

That particular article of mine has been around for a long time and has gone through a couple edits. It also happens to be the most "misappropriated" (to put it kindly) article on my site, and many, many people steal it and claim it as theirs. Thus, it's just one example of how I am often put in a position where I have to have some uncomfortable conversations with people whom I feel have done me a grave injustice (you simply disagreed with me and were very unhappy, imagine how you'd feel having your original work *stolen* from you). All that being said, and since you have requested feedback, I would like to offer how I handle these sorts of things and maybe it would be useful to tweak and make your own if you ever find you need it.

First, no matter what I am sure I *know,* I *always* assume something is a mistake or a misunderstanding and approach it from that aspect. I write whomever is doing me wrong a nice note, ask them to remove my work from their site, and wait a reasonable time for a response (and check my SPAM filters, MISSY!). If the issue is resolved, then great, my job is done. Even though I had to spend precious time I don't by any means have, doing something I should have never had to do in a perfect world where people are raised right, at least there was a quick and easy resolution. On the other hand, if I get no response or a negative one, I then get a little tougher and let them know I will notify their host of the infringement and take further action if they don't remove my copyrighted material. Still no response, I do exactly that... contact the host, file a Digital Millennium Copyright Act complaint with Google, and let my legal guy in on what's going on. This method has yet to fail me and I've never had to go further. I have never, never, never made public statements about this stuff (and I'm being broad in my use of the word "stuff" here, not just copyright infringement), and wouldn't unless all other means of resolution were exhausted without success. Only then would I pull out the big guns if I deemed it worth my while, taking any appropriate action I have available to me... and I *soooo* can turn on "bitch mode." Just ask my husband, LOL!

Anyway, that's how I have learned to handle things in my many years of doing business on the net, your mileage may vary with any given situation, of course. People have tried to rip off everything from my articles, to my design descriptions, to my designs themselves (and still do) and it used to make me ABSOLUTELY NUTS. These days I hardly blink. As they say, "It is infinitely more degrading to be in the position to have to steal another's ideas than to be the one stolen from." And besides, no matter how hard they try, NOBODY can make hair sticks like *I* do... so there, LOL!

In the end, I do appreciate outspoken women who stand up for themselves and though I would have approached it a bit differently myself, no harm was done in the end and hopefully it was an educational experience for everyone involved. I am at the very least happy that my article is as accurate as it can be and for that, I thank you!

Unfortunately, now I am reminded that I haven't trolled the net looking for my stuff where it doesn't belong for quite a while and I guess I have to... I *so* hate having to do this crap.

Naturally Sophia said...

Thanks Susan! I appreciate that no harm was done and will utilize your suggestions with my own business ventures. I wish you many, many sales and all the best.

EmberRose said...

I can understand not being able to find her email address but in that case I would have posted that you had some concerns/questions and ask her to contact you. I would not have put that whole letter in a comment.

In addition I would have given it a bit more time for the misunderstanding to be worked out. What if she'd removed the comment and planned to email you about it and something came up and she had to hop off the pc? Just because the internet is fast as lightning doesn't always mean the people who use it are KWIM?

Lastly I would have worded the letter to her differently. Something more like: I have Sisterlocks and my hair has thrived. Could you maybe shed some light on how you came to the conclusion you reached in your article? My experiences, as well as the experiences outlined here: tell me this just isn't so.

Naturally Sophia said...

Ember Rose- First, I accept that you would have handled it differently. I particularly like the suggestion about posting the comment asking for a contact route. However, I accept we all have different ways of being in the world and that no harm was done. KWIM? ;p

msfullroller said...

Though I appreciate her for revising her statement it's still mis-information. If she did her research, there are many who have had locs for many years that have combed out their locs and did not have damage to their hair. What is seen as "damage" is actually the shed hair that is not being released everyday as when the hair is worn loose. One cannot expect to retain the same length once the locs are combed out.

Naturally Sophia said...

msfullroller- I agree that you may be correct on this point: "What is seen as "damage" is actually the shed hair that is not being released everyday as when the hair is worn loose." I will send Susan an e-mail with your comment in case she misses it on the post. Thanks for your comment.

Thandi said...

I was going to say what msfullroller has said.I think her 'research' was a tiny bit flawed.

siminators said...

I have to agree with msfullroller. I've actually take down the locks I had about a year ago and my hair is still perfectly healthy (I'm actually getting another set of locks soon). Other than a bit of shedding and a intially rougher texture to my hair, my hair felt fine and I take great care of my hair, then and now.