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Gaffes galore for Newark visitor centre contest

A number of unfortunate blunders have left hundreds of entrants taking part in a competition to design a new visitor centre for Newark, New Jersey, ‘annoyed’, bemused and ‘disappointed’

The fiasco, which resulted in the inadvertent naming of all competition hopefuls, started when a handful of practices began contacting the jurors of the Newark Visitor Centre (NVC) competition, ahead of the 15 October submission deadline.

A list of the judges had been published on the competition website by the organisers and the ‘breach of trust’ prompted a sternly worded email to all participants – together with a copied list of every entrant.

It said: ‘Please understand that this email is merely a kind warning.

‘If you didn’t know who you were contacting well shame on YOU because we let you know. The jury list was up months ago. If you are trying to fool us, well we’ll find out.’

Firms from all over the world including Japan, the Netherlands, Italy and Israel have registered for the ‘international conceptual design competition’ including UK firms (the AJ knows the names).

Following the mistake, an organiser of the Newark Visitor Centre competition, was left with no choice but to apologise for the blunders.

A subsequent email read: ‘Please accept my humble apology for the tone of my last email and for the BCCing mistake.

‘We have put in countless hours over the months working on this competition. It is a shame that one email could have jeopardised it.

‘However, we are take fairness in this competition very seriously and it is unfortunate and ironic that I failed in the trust you gave me and I am very sorry for disappointing you.’

One UK-based competitor said that the gaffes had not deterred them from continuing with their submission: ‘We are a little disappointed but can understand that these things happen. We will still be taking part.’

No contestants have been disqualified from the contest and, according to the organiser, none have dropped out.

Readers' comments (1)

  • whan a flaming waste of time that competition was....I spent 50 minutes designing my entry

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