Last week, after participating in a discussion about a product called LocLoops that generated provocative questions about how black-owned businesses interact with their customers, I decided I would post a commentary about the subject on my blog. I thought it would be valuable and fair to give you, as owner of this business, the opportunity to comment about your product and company, the LockItUp discussion, and my own commentary. Especially since, according to your website, Ms. Pearson is marketing the LocLoops product directly to Sisterlock wearers. To date Ms. Pearson, you have not responded to me, so today I am writing you a second email message which I am reposting here:
Dear Ms. Pearson and Curls and Coils, LLC,
I wrote you a few days ago to let you know I will be posting about your product on my blog Friday. By now, I am sure you are aware that last Wednesday, one of your customers posted information about your product and website on the Yahoo discussion group LockItUp. After following up to see the site and product, I was struck 1) by the similarity in design and function of your product to another that is very widely known in the LockItUp group and amongst the blog community called Soft Spikes, and 2) by the disproportionately high unit price of your product in comparison.
By way of the list discussion, it was conveyed that you have claimed no prior knowledge of the SoftSpikes product and that your product was made of a materially specially designed for 'locked' hair. According to the account given to the group, you have reported that you designed this product sui generis and that you have been testing it on your customers for a year. This intrigued me, to say the least. I contacted the owner of the SoftSpikes company to get her reaction to your product and website and from there the situation has become even more intriguing.
I have seen the proof of shipping information that shows you purchased, and obviously was aware of the SoftSpikes product since at least last year. That company has been selling their product for 11 years. Since your site claims that you have a patent pending for your product, I asked you what type of patent you were seeking and why you were telling your customers that you had never heard of SoftSpikes. Surely, since you were indeed familiar with the SoftSpikes product, you realize that neither the design nor (from the pictures and description you posted on your site) the material of your product are original or significantly improved.
While I usually purchase all of the products I review on my blog, I am not willing to purchase yours because of the price. However, I was interested to find out from you the nature of the special design and composition of your product and what about it that is unique for locked hair. I also inquired about the price difference.
I would really like to give you the opportunity to comment on your product and the chronology of your research and development. So I am writing you again in hopes that you will respond. I would be willing to quote you directly if you respond to my questions as posed. Please respond by tomorrow evening if you want your comments to be included in my posting. As you may be aware the Yahoo discussion group and blogging community is very interested in information about new products useful for Sisterlocks grooming and styling. I also have Sisterlocks and try to find out as much as I can about the products I use and businesses I patronize. I hope you will take the opportunity to share your comments with us all.