After the bogus document, void of validity and reliability, was unveiled in a method akin to guerilla warfare on June 25th (Saturday), at the JAGDA general assembly (The reason why I call it a bogus document: It was compiled without hearing from the judges who were on the selection panel for the first design competition nor from the persons who were involved in the competition, without any relevant information gathering; it was a fictional account that only reflected the views of the author. When compared with the information that I was able to acquire as a judge who served on the panel, I found numerous apparent discrepancies that differed from the actual facts. Furthermore, vital facts that should have been included in the document were left out―an apparent cover-up. Thus taken as a whole, the contents were extremely unreliable and inappropriate. I intend to update my interpretation of the document when it is released to the public), 24 days later, on July 19th (Tuesday), I received a copy of JAGDA’s official statement by mail. Enclosed inside the envelope, together with the document itself, I found a letter signed by the president and two vice presidents of JAGDA. The wording was both curious and puzzling.
Dear JAGDA Members:
The 33rd JAGDA General Assembly took place in Kyoto on June 25.
Please find enclosed “Regarding the 1st design competition for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games emblems” which was released at the general assembly, for your perusal.
The document is the fruit of numerous discussions and revisions conducted by the JAGDA board and steering committee members who finally came to agreement. We assume our members will have various opinions. We hope you will take this opportunity to have discussions with people around you. If you should have any comments or opinions please send them to the JAGDA office.
* Please note that the documents that were distributed at the general assembly meeting were copies, a simplified edition. At this time we are sending the official document to all members, including those who were absent and those who were present.
Name and signature of president
Two vice presidents
The letter was short, a mere seven lines. Yet it employed a clever tactic to switch the focus by slipping in the words: “We assume our members will have various opinions. We hope you will take this opportunity to have discussions with people around you”―giving the false impression that it was guaranteeing fairness. Despite this semblance of impartiality the fact remains: this is basically a bogus document that cannot be trusted. Though the letter urges us to go have discussions among fellow JAGDA members, the premise is already flawed. What meaning is there in taking action to discuss a document that is unreliable in the first place? It is beyond my understanding. If the letter was worded differently, for example, say, “If you should find anything wrong with the document please let us know. If you find an area that needs further explanation, please feel free to ask a question”, I could maybe see some point as to the reason why the document was being sent. But here was a request to go discuss this matter. No way was I going to do so with a simple, “Of course. I will have discussions with people around me”. This was hardly acceptable.
What is missing from the picture is the crucial piece: “The document was railroaded through on June 25, forcibly passed at the general assembly, so that it could be falsely presented as an official JAGDA overview statement. Actually, JAGDA forsook its duty to send out the document to all members before the general assembly. Thus members who signed the proxy were in fact signing without having gone through the document itself. So this official overview does not stand. In fact, it is an unofficial overview statement”. This is the reality of where the document stands, a crucial document which supposedly reflects the views of JAGDA. This should be fully explained by the JAGDA board and steering committee. Yet not a word is said about this. Looking back on the string of events that led up to this point, in principle, I believe that this document is something that needs to be scrapped.
Let me further analyze some problems regarding this letter. After sending the document to all JAGDA members, let us say a number of members responded, and offered their opinions. The picture becomes one person against the JAGDA office―everything happens behind closed doors. There may be good opinions and bad opinions. But unless the JAGDA office chooses to go public, there is no way for regular JAGDA members to get a grasp of the ideas and opinions offered by other members. In fact, ever since the problem regarding the Olympic logo came alight, I heard that JAGDA members across the nation were sending in their comments and opinions to the JAGDA office. But the precious collected voices have not been reported to JAGDA members. We have heard nothing. As the JAGDA office has no say in whether or not to release such comments, I assume that the board is making the decision and giving instructions to keep the precious comments and opinions, the voices of JAGDA members, on hold, locked up within the JAGDA board and office. As a result, on surface, all is calm. It is as though JAGDA members have no complaints, no criticism whatsoever in regards to the embroiling Olympic logo issue―JAGDA is enclosed in an uncanny bubble. There is an air of business as usual, as if members don’t see any problem.
Let us take a step further. Then why doesn’t the letter touch on the fact that the document was presented at the general assembly, votes were cast and the document approved. Not a single word. The event took place before 201 members who were actually present at the general assembly. The remaining 2,848 members are unaware of the fact. Why not let them know? What is the reason for not reporting the fact that the document was presented at the general assembly, voted through and approved (Approved: the document is elevated to the position of the general consensus of all JAGDA members)? Why not inform its members? The method taken at this time, i.e. mailing the document without any explanation whatsoever, was inappropriate to say the least. It seems like a ploy to create an official overview document by establishing the fact that the document was indeed sent to all members. I don’t think JAGDA can refute this accusation.
The letter goes on to say “If you should have any comments or opinions please send them to the JAGDA office”. Even if the office receives comments and opinions from the members, at this point, nothing is said as to how the office will respond to them. There is no mention of reflecting such opinions in the document. I think comments that are sent in should be made public―with names withheld to protect personal identities. If JAGDA does not intend to go public with the information, the proposal, “If you should have any comments or opinions please send them to the JAGDA office”, becomes an insincere ploy set in place to allow members to vent their frustration―in my mind, a mere formality.
Here is another thing. In this short letter of a mere seven lines, the claim that “The document is the fruit of numerous discussions and revisions conducted by the JAGDA board and steering committee members who finally came to agreement” was included just as it was in the full document. The letter stresses and declares how “numerous discussions” took place. If so, I propose that JAGDA release the records, such as the minutes of these meetings, which can serve as evidence that these “numerous discussions” took place.
In conclusion, before we even sit down to discuss the point as to whether this document can stand as an official statement or not, let us look at the fact that it took a year since the initial problem erupted, for JAGDA―an organization to which many persons who were directly involved in the Olympic logo problem belong―to come up with an overview statement; which ultimately turned out to be a fabricated document, crude in content, unreliable and deceptive. With this document, JAGDA blew its chance to regain trust. As for the bogus document which amounts to a set of fallacious arguments, there is nothing more to be said. I believe it should be scrapped, right away.
The current title itself, “Regarding the 1st design competition for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games emblems”, reads as something vague and irresponsible. Leave that irresponsible stance. We don’t need a document that focusses solely on the “viewpoint” factor either. I believe what is crucially important, is for us to come up with a new document that we can call: “The Olympics Logo Controversy―a summary and overview” that offers not only an overview but lays out a record of facts, in an honest and straightforward manner, for a consummate summary. It is a pressing matter.
Designer/Visioner, Executive Director of Communication Design Laboratory
Hirano served on the panel that chose the official emblem for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, which was ultimately withdrawn.
[Yet another question after my latest post]
After I posted chapter 038, I learned that the said overview statement was released on the JAGDA official website. The statement was not released in whole; it consists of only the cover page and seven pages out of the thirteen that were released at the general assembly. For some reason, the chronological table which took up page 8 and page 9, and the statement released by ico-D that was posted in the pages 11 through 13 in the original booklet were taken out.
As I stated in chapter 037, the overview statement that was presented at the general assembly and voted through was subsequently sent out as JAGDA’s official document entitled “Regarding the 1st design competition for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games emblems”. It was a 13-page booklet. Thus I believe the total 13 pages make up the JAGDA overview. Naturally, I felt suspicious of the way JAGDA chose to go with a partial release of its booklet, which at the same time gave rise to yet another question.
Once again, I would like to give a summary of construction of the JAGDA document. The overview document consists of 13 pages. Page 1 is an introduction; pages 2 to 7, the overview text; pages 8 and 9 are given over to a sort of chronological table, fashioned out of warped so-called historical facts; page 10 is left blank; pages 11 through 13 are used to reproduce the statement released by ico-D, which is entitled “Official objection by ico-D against the open competition held for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games emblem design” in whole. So the JAGDA booklet’s final pages serve to present the official statement released by the international council of design, ico -D.
|Title page||Title/time and date/name of organization|
|Page 1||Introduction (no signature)
Names of board members and steering committee members
|Pages 2- 7||Regarding the 1st design competition for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games emblems|
|Pages 8-9||Sequence of events: Regarding the 1st design competition for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games emblems|
|Pages 11-13||Official objection by ico-D against the open competition held for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games emblem design|
Here I have listed the contents of the 13 pages that make up the overview statement that was distributed; a saddle-stich booklet with the title page “Regarding the 1st design competition for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games emblems” which was distributed at the general assembly, and was voted through. Considering the sequence of events, I believe the whole 13-pages made up the JAGDA overview. Then why reveal only a part of the booklet―a deviation from the actual content that was put up for voting at the assembly―on JAGDA’s official website?
July 29, 2016