1st off I know everybody is pretty much full of Ken Whitman talk and while I get it, letting the issue die down for the simple sake of preserving one’s sanity is a tradeoff of silence that enables Ken to possibly swindle someone else. Odds are if you’re reading this you have a passing familiarity with the situation and this is at best a popcorn moment. If so, good for you…..
I’m posting this, through Erik, as part of my “not another dime” campaign, as in I want to make sure Ken Whitman doesn’t ever make another dime in this industry. I’m far from alone in this matter, but Ken still has his supporters. I have no clue why outside maybe Ken has a high CHA score.
The Mrs. and I went to GenCon for a day with only one event in mind….the Knights of the Dinner Table: Live Action Series (KoDT:LAS) “premiere”. We had backed at $450 and the big bump in backer level was for front-row seating and an after-party. The weekend before the big event Ken got pissy and decided to cancel the after party.
Right off……I have to call some major BS here. There were to be three after-parties originally, back-to-back in two hour increments. Hell, for some stupid reason you can STILL buy tickets to these events! (http://d20entertainment.com/d20-entertainment-gen-con-after-party/) Major hint here Ken…..just removing the links to a webpage from your other pages doesn’t make that webpage go away! The BS part about Ken’s narrative of getting mad at Jolly Blackburn and then canceling the party out of spite is that there were to be two other parties, both of which were unrelated to the KoDT:LAS. Either way you cannot cancel an event that is mythical. Ken Whitman never reserved the party location. I met with the sales manager at the hotel and confirmed that Ken had filled out reservation paperwork, but he put down a credit card that was declined. Since he never returned the hotel’s calls or emails to get updated payment, the room was never reserved.
So the parties didn’t have a venue and they didn’t have the promised attendees either. Ken never bothered to invite or make arrangements for the actors to attend GenCon and the after-party despite that being the whole selling point of that Kickstarter backer level…..and his contract with KenzerCo.
Some fans and the guys over at Zombie Orpheus Entertainment (ZOE) worked with Jolly Blackburn and GenCon to secure a room for an after party and bent over backwards scrambling to bring as many of the KoDT:LAS actors to GenCon that they could. Everyone but Christopher Folan (Dave) was able to get there, at no small expense and effort. Ken didn’t have ANYTHING to do with this after-party or the actors, but he still put out a ham-fisted effort to take credit anyway.
Barely 26 hours before the KoDT:LAS premiere Ken sends an email out to a few select folks (I counted six people) informing them of the “new” after-party at small restaurant starting at 11 PM, and hour after the “unofficial” after-party. It really seemed that maybe Ken thought he could hobble something together and consider that part of the Kickstarter fulfilled. Never mind the fact he didn’t have anything promised and paid for by backers. The actors would be at the other party and who the hell wants to start a party at 11pm? Nope, doesn’t meet the fulfillment in any real (and legal) sense.
A group of the backers arrived early to the event and saw there was a considerable line already. We formed our own group and when the GenCon staff asked us if we were there for the event some of us…..ok me, was less than nice to them in making it clear that we were backers, had no tickets, and sure as hell weren’t getting into the main line. I did apologize……and they lined us upon the opposite side of the doors. Since most of us knew each other we pretty much policed ourselves and lined up according to our backer levels. From my prime vantage spot I could listen in on the staff a bit and see that Ken Whitman was holed up in the room instead of coming out as promised in his video earlier in the week. If you haven’t seen that video, don’t watch the original…this copy is much better (http://dontfundkenwhitman.blogspot.com/2015/07/ken-whitman-faces-lie-detector-in-his.html). While Ken never left the room, he did send his girlfriend out. Easy enough to recognize her from the vacation photos. I think she is the one that ferried a list of the backers to the staff for admittance. I saw the list and it wasn’t organized by backer level (remember two folks paid a HUGE premium for their seats) and was incomplete. Instead of giving us tickets as promised (and stated as having been sent out at least once) this list was the only information GenCon had….and I wasn’t on it, not even as a “+1”. The staff where pretty cool though and they knew that the list was messed up so for the most part they just took out word for it. Jolly and Barb Blackburn showed up and offered to help the staff, but they pretty much just decided it was a mess and assume folks were being honest.
The only issue at that point was that they didn’t have enough chairs in the room because their seating never accounted for the backers! I believe that the ZOE guys came through again and gave the staff a head’s up because they were moving in chairs BEFORE they got the partial backer list.
The showing went off well enough and everyone was pretty damned civil. I agree that Jolly did a bang-up job with the script and the actors rocked, but the two rough-cut episodes were…well, rough. I highly doubt Ken will be in any position to finish them up, much less send out DVDs to backers. I wasn’t pleased, but I’ll freely admit I went into this viewing anticipating more of Ken’s BS, but we did keep it civil, as requested. I think most of us that would have started a riot knew that Barbara Blackburn was in a bit of an anxious state because of all the drama. It was bad enough that earlier in the day some of us decided every time she said the name “Ken” she got a hug…because she needed it. At the end of the showing we had a brief Q&A, but only because Jolly and the ZOE guys pretty much took control and brought up the actors. Even though two of the ZOE troop were in the KoDT:LAS, it seemed obvious to me they were putting focus on the two newer actors (Jenny Simmons and Josh Logsdon playing Sara and Brian). The session was cut short to prep the room for the next event and everyone had about an hour to kill before the after-party.
The after-party was “meh”, but still worth attending. Geekpreacher bought me and the Mrs. each a “soda” for a total of $10. Our drinks consisted of one can of diet coke split between two glasses, with some left over. That was all hotel there. We did get some more Mike Mason and our very own Cahira doing a belly dance (full costume and everything). It was a good time to mill about and chat with folks, just wasn’t what I consider a “party”, but quite surprising when you consider the unusual constraints involved. There was some free swag donated by several game companies that knew about the fiasco and wanted to pitch in, even if just a little bit. Even though he wasn’t there, I think Ken helped cast a pall over what should have been a much brighter moment of revelry.
Now I knew of some of Ken’s breaches of contract with KenzerCo, hard not to with all the talk going on at the KenzerCo booth earlier in the day. Of course Dave Kenzer is about as cool and collected as can be. Not so much “I’m a lawyer and we have his ass over a barrel” cool, but a “Don’t give the guy any power over you” type of cool. I have always admired folks who can take in the big picture and be cool about shit, but that isn’t me. We knew that Ken Whitman was to have a meeting with Jolly and Dave regarding the contract and at the viewing Ken straight-up said he’d be giving KenzerCo the film, but instead he skipped out of the meeting and also did a no-show at the Friday 10 AM viewing. Later Ken posted on Facebook that there had been a threat on his life and that GenCon cancelled “everything except the premieres”.
Again, I have to call BS. Ken cut and pasted an email form GenCon showing that event FLM1569413 had been cancelled, but the Friday viewing was event FLM1569412. As of yesterday it was still listed as an event on the GenCon website. If they had cancelled that event then it would at least have the right number. No, I think that Ken cancelled a later showing for Thursday night quite some time ago and simply recycled the email as an excuse. This would explain why GenCon doesn’t have anything to say about the alleged cancellation for Friday’s viewing and didn’t notify ticket holders of the cancellation.
Since GenCon Ken has been emailing multiple folks in the industry trying to sell the fulfillment of the Pencil Dice Kickstarter for $10. In the email he admits to squandering the money and he had already admitted in an interview that he spent Pencil Dice money on KoDT:LAS, but what he have recently learned is that was actually Ken paying back an independent investor to the KoDT:LAS that he needed because he squandered that money.
So it appears that Ken is broke and trying to get out from his obligations…period. Ken has admitted, or had exposed, that he has spent Kickstarter money basically on anything but the projects he collected the money for in the first place. At this point people need to get the FCC and their Attorney Generals involved in this. When they do they need to make sure they are complaining about Ken Whitman himself and not d20 entertainment. Why?
Because d20 entertainment DOES NOT EXIST. It is a figment of Ken Whitman’s imagination and d20 Entertainment does not exist as a legal entity in any of the 50 states. I know because I’ve checked with the Secretary of State of all 50 states. If you go ahead and check Kentucky, the state that Ken lives in and presumably the one d20 entertainment should reside in, you will find an entry. By all means, check it out for yourself. I won’t tell you what is special about that entry, but you can figure it out for yourself.
So in the last week I’ve uncovered evidence about Ken lying about his webstore, his after-parties, his GenCon cancellation, and even his company. That is four pretty big things…..but still some people believe his BS - Christopher
Alright, have you seen this letter?
Ken was asked in the Kickstarter comments section if it was real (the phone number is) - he didn't answer that. As an aside, you can't reassign responsibilities in Kickstarter - see Dwimmermount
BTW, that car Ken was driving around to the filming set and elsewhere? According to Ken, that was a 2 week test drive that cost him nothing. Yeah... right.
Go to the KotDT: LAS comments section - but first, grab a beer and some popcorn. More drama, more laughs, more lies - simply more of everything!