And it begins.
We’ve purposely been a bit quiet about the project the last couple weeks, hoping we wouldn’t need to write this blog. Alas…
We hit our first snag recently when we were contacted by the support crew at Indiegogo, concerned that our campaign would be flagged by OFAC, the Office of Foreign Asset Control at the Treasury as being out of compliance with the Iran Sanctions. If OFAC were to decide we are not in compliance, it could prove problematic for the transfer of the funds we are raising, though we believe we will be able to proceed with our plans. At the suggestion of our awesome support agent at Indie, we have contacted OFAC to request information on our ability to raise this money and transfer the gear to the Iran Slackline team as planned. This request can take time, however, and after waiting a couple of weeks we have decided to pause our campaign while we await the response. Based on conversations with people who have more knowledge of such things, we do not expect to be barred from making this transfer in the long run. We’re simply having to deal with a bit of bureaucracy to get there.
What this means to contributors and potential contributors: If you have already donated via Paypal, that money has been transferred to our account and is potentially at risk. In the unlikely event that OFAC decides it is worth its time to confiscate a couple hundred dollars, I will gladly refund your contributions personally. However, most contributions so far have been made via credit card and will not be transferred until the campaign officially ends. These are safe even if OFAC does decide to bar our efforts to replace the lost gear as Indiegogo would simply not process these transfers and you keep your money. Potential contributors, hopefully we’ll hear back from OFAC soon and when we do the campaign will be back online ASAP and we will make a large push to use our remaining 2 weeks of time on the campaign to bring in the funds needed.
What this means for our plans: We leave for Turkey in just over a month. Hopefully this is cleared up by then and we proceed as planned. If not, well, we knew we’d have to work with the sanctions and regulations and that not everything would go smoothly. We’re still committed to making Crossing Lines happen. This is just part of the adventure.
We’ll keep you posted. In the meantime, check out this video about what slacklining means in Iran. http://vimeo.com/83569329
Thank you for being a part of this project.
Once it’s back up the Indiegogo campaign can be found here.