TACC

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TACC Chairman of the Board: Less than .5% of membership are complaining

Since this is part two of my saga with the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC); and some may not have read part one, I will summarize to bring you up to speed. I photograph everything. I use the photos to promote people and places. We joined the TACC last December. I photographed many TACC events, gave free publicity to local businesses that are Chamber members, promoted non-profits and shot an event at the request of the TACC President and CEO, Donna Duperron. On August 9, Donna told me camera was no longer allowed at Chamber events, even though other cameras were. On August 21, Donna said she wanted me to come to her office to meet with her and the TACC Chairman of the Board, Aaron Aalcides. If you want to read it all, please go to http://www.gotbaddog.com/tacc-no-free-advertising-wanted/.

I brought Tanya with me to my meeting with Donna and Aaron because the company that is the Chamber of Commerce member is hers. When we were seated in Donna’s office I could not help but notice that it seemed Aaron had compiled a dossier on us. At the top of the stack of papers was a print out of the Synergy-DTI home page. His first question was why do I take so many photos? I started to explain how we use them to do Internet marketing, SEO and branding but I could tell he was not getting it. I also mentioned how I am a CNN iReporter and a restaurant reviewer for Examiner.com and the photos were used there as well. It did not matter.

TACC Offices

The TACC offices

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Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce: We never asked for free exposure

I am going to preface this story by saying I intentionally did not start writing this yesterday because I did not want my anger to get in the way of my words. To be honest, I could have started writing this back on August 9 when this all started. The writing was on the wall, the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC) President/CEO and Chairman of the Board just wanted to make it official. I also want to say that I have met some very nice people at TACC and if I speak negatively about the TACC it is based solely on the actions of Donna Duperron and Aaron Aalcides. Additionally, I am not asking anyone to get involved. I am just telling my story. If you want to get involved, share this story. Let people make their own decisions. As most of you have no idea what I am talking about; I will start at the beginning.

Indian head dress

Back room of Pow Wow Pawn - Hardin, MT

Those that know me and anyone that has read this blog a while knows that I do event photography and photograph everything I see and do. I frequently use the photos to give publicity to the location; whether it is a restaurant or a National Park. It is free advertising, most of the time. I have yet to run into a restaurant, bar, bakery, curio shop or any other brick and mortar business owner that ever turned down free press. I get invited to the back rooms of stores and shops to see what they have that is too cool for public display. At the beginning of the year I decided I was going to start promoting local businesses and events more than I have in the past. In December, Tanya and I had joined the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce Continue reading

Redondo Beach Chamber Regional Mixer at Seaside Lagoon

Last night, I headed over to the Redondo Beach Chamber of Commerce Annual Regional Mixer at the Seaside Lagoon in Redondo Beach. While it would be easy for me to just write off the Chamber of Commerce based on my treatment by the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce (TACC) I refuse to do so. I have found a lot of value in attending the various regional mixers that local chambers put on, because most of them [and their members] understand the value of free exposure. As a matter of fact, being named the official photographer for the Palos Verdes Street Fair was due to my attending the Palos Verdes Chamber Mixer back in February.

We did not stay long as Tanya was not feeling well and I was not really in the groove as I had to spend too much effort intentionally not photographing any TACC board members, but it was a nice event. We met a few people from various chambers and introduced a few people to the Rheumatoid Patient Foundation and Business N Beer.

The participating chambers included Redondo Beach, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Rancho Palos Verdes, Torrance, Harbor City/Harbor Gateway, Carson, El Segundo, Lomita and Gardena chambers. There were free food samples provided by Captain Kidd’s, Corner Bakery, Isabella’s Cookie Company (killer cookies, by the way), Silvio’s, Ruby’s and several others. There was a live band and door prizes. All in all, a nice event and it gave us some ideas on what local Chamber of Commerce we will join next. Continue reading

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