[UPDATE 5/9] Review on Komugitsune (Letter to NR)

Posted 3 months, 12 days ago (Edited 2 months, 16 days ago) by fortuneyolk
NEW UPDATE REGARDING 1. Gumroad refunds. 2. Aug engaging in upselling and potential scamming. Updates added at the bottom!

This is a letter to the members of Northern Ruins who have been thrown headfirst into sudden chaos. This is for the members who so recently purchased slots and items, for the members who were awaiting Valentines batch adopts, for the Guest Artists left without answers and some with half finished adopts, and even the unwitting Moderators who have since discussed things with all parties involved and have since made their own decisions in regards to things.

This is here in case the original letter is taken down from Northern Ruins.

Before delving into the details, keep several things in mind.

This all happened because two staff members, Min and Yolk, quit after not being allowed to discuss the idea of compensation for hundreds of hours of work in just the past few months. We just quit after leaving behind a notice of resignation with grievances in only the mod server. The goal was never to hurt Northern Ruins because despite all this, we still dearly loved it and, above all, its community. Northern Ruins contained so many friends that we would not want to hurt just because we were quitting. The only one who had the power to delete the servers was Aug despite what he has been relaying to people. And keep in mind, he has yet to release a comprehensive statement just explaining things to the people caught in the crossfire of his decisions.

Also note, Aug has not made any attempt to directly contact Min nor Yolk after quitting. Min has not been available for contact since the stress of the situation has landed them in the ER so lack of contact with Min might be excusable. However, Yolk has always been open to civil conversation and has told such to each and every messenger Aug has sent his way. Almost every messenger seemed to also think that Min and Yolk were at some fault for the servers being taken down or for the supposed destruction of Northern Ruins. As said previously, we merely quit because of lack of compensation. The only thing that was directly changed was that Min repossessed unpaid decorative code that they wrote and are the rightful owner of. Min left a lot of the code they themselves paid for along with other things on the site despite everything to make sure the site stayed perfectly functional with the database intact.

All destructive actions are by Aug’s hand only.

Plus, it was by his suggestion Yolk quit initially and Min followed soon after.

While Aug will repeatedly say he would have given compensation if he had known, he was the one who did not even want to discuss it in the first place. That is an undeniable fact. The issue is not a matter of money but rather a matter of fairness, transparency, and attitude. Aug does not entertain the idea of compensation in a transparent manner but instead opts to try to push it off till later. Compensation desired wasn’t even necessarily monetary but since he did not even want to discuss it, he would not have known. Min, who spent hundreds of dollars out of pocket, deserves monetary compensation especially considering their personal situation that Aug is completely aware of. Yolk did not want monetary compensation but rather wanted pets, items, and/or slots that were higher than common. But, again, Aug did not want to discuss compensation and therefore would not have known by his own choice. Note, previous staff-wide compensation was a single common slot. The only scaled compensation was a single Aspirith slot for Min. Compensation was not repeated nor otherwise scaled per work time. ONLY slots for compensation is a slap in the face since it requires work to truly get the benefit. Those bogged down by work by Northern Ruins or otherwise or even personal life would not really get any benefit from the slots at all. He also claims that the privilege to do adopts when he chooses to do them is compensation ignoring the fact that creating the adopts in itself is work. The price of an adopt pays for the adopt’s creation. It does not pay for the cost of the assets done. It does not pay for the cost of the site. It does not pay for the time spent on work for Northern Ruins outside of the adopt.

But, these words are nothing without the evidence to back them up. Aug, we know you keep telling people your version of the truth. So, we will tell our truth with the evidence to back it up.

If you wish to know the truth behind the issue at hand, this link will take you there.

If any questions come up, feel free to comment on the linked sheet. Since some of the images may be small, it is recommended to view it in presentation format. Imgur links will be added later to ease reading. For the sake of not overwhelming people, please do not DM any party involved! Additionally, please do not harass Aug. Even if we have issues with him, we do not want to cause him unneeded trouble in that regard. To be transparent, this letter and the attached compilation of evidence have been created and curated by Yolk. In order to ease the reading process, I have been referring to myself in third person. Min has had a limited amount of input regarding this because they have been hospitalized and are still ongoing treatment. Further details regarding their personal health will not be given at this time to respect their privacy.

Thank you for your time in reading this.

〔Edit 9-May-2021〕

Steve from Gumroad finally learns to read.

"If you haven't gotten your refund yet, you purchased through Gumroad, and you are being ghosted or dismissed by Komugitsune, please email [email protected] directly to get your refunds. They will process the refunds for you."

Gumroad is now giving out refunds!

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! ! ! ONGOING BREAKING OF TOS AND POTENTIAL SCAMMING ! ! !

Aug is currently upselling several designs despite not adding to their value via commissioned work or through any other valid means.

Upselling Eeray

Upselling Diab

NotDamien's Statement on Sell Value of Designs

SnorkMaiden's Statement on Sell Value of Designs

Upselling Traded Design

Heelies's Statement on Sell Value of Designs

Upselling Gifted Design

If you wish to keep track of what he is attempting to sell and to see if anything might have inflated sell values, the link to his trade/sell thread is below. If you find something that may have inflated value, please report it and make a comment on his thread about it so more people can know. If you wish to, you can also comment here and I will add it to the list here.

Komugitsune's Trade/Sale Thread

EDIT: Image Transcription of Slides

PDF Version of Slide (Note: this will not be updated as fast but will be updated alongside the original.)

〔Edit 3-May-2021〕:

I'm adding this edit here since Aug decided, in a relatively confusing move, to lie blatantly on his site about the situation. Considering that, the following links will be added for ease of access to emphasize what he has had a direct hand in. This has gone beyond an issue concerning former staff since it has deeply affected many people unrelated to the original grievances I wrote. I sincerely hope this will help open more eyes to the issue.

I will preface with two important links.

Evidence submission form

This form is to collect formal evidence against komugitsune (Aug). As of right now, we are prioritizing gathering evidence of financial malpractice in order to strengthen cases against him in PayPal and Gumroad. However, if you have evidence of him doing any unsavory acts, we welcome that as well.

Please share this twitter link on the issue.

I have been informed that the issue is not well known outside of TH so it would be wonderful if you can spread the word outside.

Proof that Aug threatened Min and I with police action as well as that Red and Damien did not lie about it.

Please note for posterity that this was done in a midst of a spike in anti-Asian crime. Both Min and I are Asian. Threats of police, in itself, is not a joke. But threatening it in this climate is horrendous especially considering he knows both of our addresses as well as the addresses of many others.

Min's statements against Aug's allegations

Persistent lack of communication

I would like to note that Aug has still never attempted to directly contact me and has blocked me everywhere instead.

Cutting off communication avenues

It has been documented that Rook has been aiding with refunds as well as trying to be an avenue of communication between Aug and everyone else since he refuses to communicate directly. Since they have been cut off, Aug has effectively decided he would rather not face the allegations against him. Aug seems to have been using them as a scapegoat for failed refunds.

Proof of selling traced Picrew design

He sold this to me when we were still friends and he had the picrew image hidden.

More traced art

Chargeback issues as well as Aug's indecision regarding NR

I don't know why Aug doesn't seem to be settled on what will happen to NR. But I will note his waffling on it seems to correlate with his waffling on refunds.

Proof Aug said despeciesing applies to Official designs

Aug lying about refund issues

I, and others, have experienced this. Aug has repeatedly been trying to lie on paypal about "nobody" trying to communicate with him. He's blocked most people seeking refunds so the only avenue of communication is PayPal where he, again, seems adamant on lying.

Aug blocking those requesting refunds

It should be noted this wasn't a chargeback but a formal request for a refund. Basically, chargebacks seem to be the only valid avenue at this point.

617th

added in a comment on slide 5, but putting here too. 

aug doesn't have the money to compensate min, but he can do a $300 genshin pull?

unknown.png 

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[EDIT: Quick links to important posts]

Min's statement

Confirmation of police threats

Mod confirmation of police threats

Underage dating and confirmation of history of police threats

Mod non-compensation testimony

Censored Mod testimony

History of behavior testimony

Design theft

Tracing a non-commercial base for profit + tracing art

Picrew Tracing

Picrew Tracing for Profit

proof of aug's hypocrisy

617th

THIS HAS ESCALATED.

Aug is now threatening to call the police, and we do not know if it is on Min or Yolk.

We do not know if it is an idle threat or if Aug plans on attempting to lie to get immediate police intervention.  All we know is he seems to want to bring them in as retaliation.

Please understand the severity of the situation, and that bodily harm may come to Min or Yolk.

We have set up life-lines for both Yolk and Min. In the case Aug’s threats cause legitimate harm, further evidence will be released as per the wishes of parties involved.

Aug has both Yolk and Min's addresses, making this a real threat.

These threats are only considered so heavily because they have been mentioned to friends and not directly to Min nor Yolk.  If it was direct, then they could have been in jest.  Since they are not, they seem to be more serious and potentially malicious.

As of now, we are only on high alert.

617th

Entire powerpoint has been transcripted with alt text for those who need it. A separate doc for those who do not use a screen reader will be added to this comment later.

Snorkmaiden

I hope you don't mind me commenting, but I think this is the best way to get the word out-

If you have an NR design you would like voided, please contact the original artist then message the group on Deviantart. I will approve any redesigns for you or suggest edits for as long as I'm able to.

Further info (as well as links to relevant pages) are here: https://toyhou.se/~bulletins/292469.regarding-nr-designs-made-by-me

fortuneyolk

Snorkmaiden I don't mind you commenting at all. Thank you so much for doing this for people!

617th We've already talked in private but I do want to publicly thank you for helping with this.

To everyone else reading, I also want to add that adding your personal testimonies, comments, or other appropriate things to this thread is perfectly fine. Do not feel you are detracting from the main post. If this post has reminded you of a personal experience with Aug that has hurt you, don't be afraid to comment. We stand with you. If you don't wish to speak about it publicly, I do not mind censoring and posting for you. Although the original post was intended to end at just the post, enough people have shared private thoughts that I felt openly saying this additional statement was warranted. Thank you all for the support and I don't mind helping support anyone else who feels affected by Aug.

moonilymoth

617th yo are you for real??? thats insane. do you have any proof of this? this isnt to say i disbelieve you or anything, and i completely stand with yolk and min. i just think it'd be good to have documentation of something that serious

Rook

I just have to add a couple points--not refuting anything, just adding clarity--that haven't been mentioned.

-There was never any agreement, informal or otherwise, stating what Min would be paid, if they would be paid, or when they would be paid. If Min has proof of otherwise, they need to be the one to provide that, not another statement by Yolk.

Aug is disabled and art is his only source of income. He never hired Min on with the intention of paying money because he CAN'T afford to. Pointing out that he spent $300 on Genshin is like saying people who use food stamps shouldn't be allowed to buy an occasional steak. Especially considering the fact there was never a formal payment agreement, and Aug did pay Min $100 RECENTLY.

-The terms of mod employment have always been clear. If you wanted something specific beyond slots, why did you wait so long to speak up about it? For confusions sake, do you have any proof that you requested something beyond what the terms you agreed to when you became a mod?

I AM NOT saying it was okay to not receive compensation for your work. That was definitely a major problem. But you are making claims that are not backed up by the evidence you provided, and I want to request that you reread the rules regarding PSAs.

A final note, the only "destructive" thing Aug did was delete the server because he thought Yolk and Min were trying to destroy everything, which is what I would have thought upon noticing that the coding on the site had been altered/downgraded without warning.

If I can think of anything else to add, I'll let you know.

Jenova-PULSE

I want to thank you guys for publicly posting this. I've never been a part of NR nor was I interested in joining, but the massive red flags raised by Komugitsune's behavior make me never want to interact with them, ever. The fact that they refused to compensate mods in any way ever aside from a single common slot (like, seriously??) is appalling.

Threatening to call the cops on you as well... 

Best of luck to you all, especially you Min and Yolk; hope you'll stay safe, and that Min will recover soon. Sending you good vibes!

Rook

Oh yeah that's something I forgot to mention, Aug only threatened to call the cops because be thought Yolk and Min were going to threaten legal action.

fortuneyolk

Rook With full respect I say this, but if I cannot speak for Min because they are facing severe health issues then you cannot speak for Aug because of his. I have openly given him every opportunity through every messenger I have been sent from him that I am open to discussion with him. I have not blocked him on any platform. He has yet to directly contact me.

So no, Min does not need to be the one to come forward when they are the victim in this.

And no, saying spending $300 on on Genshin is like saying people who use food stamps shouldn't be allowed to buy an occasional steak is not the same. A steak costs far less, first of all, and Aug has a responsibility to his moderators before Genshin. If he doesn't see that, so be it. If you don't see that, so be it. Our opinions on this can differ.

I didn't request anything specific when I became mod because I was not yet saddled with the work I was. You can see clearly that I tried to initiate a conversation about compensation but was denied. Aug said quit if I wasn't happy. I did. How is there fault in that?

Aug deleted the servers and told people lies and twisted truths. You know this. You came into my DMs thinking such.

If you have any more things to address, let me know. I am willing to clarify anything needed.

fortuneyolk

Rook Where did we ever say that? What a drastic reaction to an assumption based on nothing.

GALLADE

moonilymoth

scroll in the replies, someone admitted that aug threatened it outright

fortuneyolk

moonilymoth there is visual evidence that i have been allowed to see by the people who originally informed me of this... but the witnesses at this time are scared and also afraid of retaliation since the evidence will show aug who they are.

i'm sorry i cannot provide extensive screenshots right now because these people would be at more immediate risk to threat than min or i would

however i do have a statement from one of them here:

i can confirm the threat of the police has been brought up multiple times and am also taking it seriously. at this time i dont feel comfortable sharing screenshots for fear of retaliation while this is ongoing.

as well as the fact hitch confirmed it on the thread (link in image unless i messed up the code) unknown.png

Rook

I never agreed that I thought Aug lied or twisted the truth. I only came to you to understand your side of the story knowing that I didn't have the full picture, and neither did Aug.

Reiterating again that Augs money has nothing to do with the mods, because he NEVER agreed to pay you USD. You entered into a formal agreement as a volunteer, not an employee, when you signed on as mod.

Did Aug ever give you a set schedule or demand that you do everything right now? Actual question because I don't know. I know he never asked or expected Min to work 8 hours a day, like you told me.

Min isn't the only one who got so stressed they needed to go to the hospital because of this. All I meant by bringing them up is you told me yourself that they have evidence that you don't, and you can't make claims of wrongdoing in a PSA without providing proof. It's in the rules.

Considering the fact that you two are the ones who went on the attack here, making Aug so scared and upset that he completely shut down because you refused to give him the time he needed to formulate a proper compensation plan (which he told you was coming, Min was building a site feature to do exactly that)--no. I can't see you as a victim here, not at all.

Do you really have to wonder why Aug has been too upset to talk to you, when you made your exit so loud and public? You may have only posted about it in the mod chat, but Min went further by posting in the GA chat, accusing Aug of manipulating them when again... there was never a payment agreement.