Opinion

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- by Anne Finlay-Stewart, Editor

Trillium Coast called me at home yesterday afternoon. He wanted me to read his response to yesterday's OwenSoundHub editorial. I have read it and published it here as a letter to the editor.
The exchange encouraged readers to do some sleuthing of their own, and the question of "who created the website?" still remains. Read on.

First, Trillium Coast is Christopher Aceto and one or more associates. Their website is now visible, but design and development is at the bottom of the list of services the company provides. Trillium Coast's main work is on the back-end, functionality of the site.

But by far the more interesting piece of Mr. Aceto's professional life is that he is also listed as a Lead Developer with aftermodern.lab, a firm that also had an ongoing relationship with our Gallery. According to its beautiful and fullsome website, aftermodern.lab is "an accomplished award-winning Toronto-based communication design studio working in both cultural and commercial contexts in all mediums". Their client list includes well-known galleries, museums, universities and festivals across Canada and beyond. They use all forms of social media to promote their work – Instagram, Twitter, Behance and yes, the Facebook that Mr. Aceto's own firm eschews.

Aftermodern.lab too did work for the TTAG on its major Betwixt and Between project. According to an undated letter, that work began Thursday, May 1, 2014 and included, but was not limited to, web development. The same package of documents includes a "Letter of Partnership" which says aftermodern.lab had worked with the Gallery since early 2013, "creating a comprehensive custom contact management system (CMS) and designing "modifications to the user-interface" on the TTAG website.

With this sort of technical expertise at aftermodern.lab, expertise we are told exists in the Grey-Bruce region as well, where does Trillium Coast come in? Because come in they did, in an "Agreement to Engage" signed September 21, 2016 by the Director of the TTAG. This agreement included "planning, definition and execution of website development". I leave it to readers to read the terms for themselves, but I draw your attention to the fact that the work was to be "performed or supervised" by Christopher Aceto, Anthony Campea and Trevor Embury – the latter being the founders and principals of aftermodernlab – with the right to sub-contract to others if necessary.

To re-iterate for Trillium Coast's comfort. I am not suggesting any wrong doing on the part of any firm doing work for our Tom Thomson Art Gallery. Nor did I mention nor imply a conspiracy, no matter how it is spelled.

But Owen Sound residents are paying part of this bill, and we here in Grey County are pretty good at reviewing our bank statements and balancing our chequebooks.

Thank you to those local folk who are taking an interest in this developing story, and making enquiries of their own.


 

 

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