A statement about the Houston Art Collective mailing list

from the CHAPS Board of Directors

Last Wednesday (12/12/18), Houston Art Collective, a new non-profit organization in the burner community here in Houston, sent out its inaugural newsletter.  To the surprise of everyone, including Houston Art Collective, that newsletter went to a number of people who should not have been on their mailing list.

These people had shared their email addresses with Unbroken Spring and CHAPS (aka Houston Burners, houstonburners.org) for purposes of registering on the website or buying tickets to Unbroken Spring.  After receiving the Houston Art Collective newsletter, many expressed concern that their personal information with CHAPS might have been mishandled.  CHAPS takes these concerns seriously, and looked into the matter.

We found that Andy Brown, a member of both Houston Art Collective and CHAPS, made a mistake during his efforts to compile the email list for Houston Art Collective. He has apologized publicly and privately for the inconvenience it has caused, and has committed to fixing it. He reports that the Houston Art Collective mailing list was deleted and is being reconstructed from scratch, with particular attention paid to the provenance of all the contacts they incorporate.

Here’s more information on what happened:

Houston Art Collective was recently created to assume responsibility for several projects that had been sheltered under CHAPS, including Houpla theme camp, their community truck,and art car. The Houston Art Collective mailing list was built in part from a number of contact lists collected from these projects. This collection of contact lists also mistakenly contained data from some other CHAPS projects that should not have been included.

The information was not stolen or leaked; as a member of the CHAPS Board and the person primarily responsible for the houstonburners.org website, Andy had legitimate access to the information, but incorrectly included some CHAPS files while collating the data. We all agree that much greater care should have been taken in constructing the Houston Art Collective mailing list.

Be assured your credit card information is safe; that no financial information was shared or misused.Access to credit card information provided via houstonburners.org remains with Stripe, the online service used to process online payments. Credit card information is encrypted and stored securely by Stripe on their servers, and is not shared with CHAPS. Learn more about Stripe’s security at https://stripe.com/docs/security/stripe. Similarly, the credit card information provided to Brown Paper Tickets for Unbroken Spring tickets is secured by BPT and not shared with the organization. Learn more about Brown Paper Tickets security at https://www.brownpapertickets.com/help/event-organizers/is-brown-paper-tickets-pci-dss-compliant/. We understand your concern, but know that credit card details have never been available to Houston Burners, CHAPS, UBS,nor to Houston Art Collective.

Going forward:

If you received Houston Art Collective’s first email but should not have, you should not receive future emails from them. Conversely, if you won’t be included in Houston Art Collective’s new mailing list but would like to receive their announcements,you can join via their website, houstonartcollective.org.

If you have any additional comments or concerns about this issue, please contact: