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I am organizing a virtual conference, and I sent the speakers a form done on jotform to collect their info for the talk. Unfortuantely, the form got disabled by the company by a mistske and I escalated the matter to their developer team, and they are not able to fix it.

Now after I sent the speakers the form. How do I communicate/explain that to the speakers without apologizing?

I came up with that:

We updated the form links due to a bug in jotform's server. Thank you.

How to make it better?

The reason for not wanting to apologize is that I don't think it is fair. Jotform works fine all the time. It is strange that it broke this time (it is not like I went to choose a bad platform). I escalated the matter to their developers team and they were not able to fix it (they simply apologized!).

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    Why would you not apologise? Feb 23, 2023 at 22:39
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    You chose to use Jotform (Jofform?). Own that decision. Feb 23, 2023 at 22:48
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    Maybe it is industry specific or cultural. I wouldn't think twice about apologizing even though the issue was out of my control. Feb 24, 2023 at 1:26
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    You can honestly say "We're sorry if this has caused any inconvenience" and tell yourself that it is a statement of fact rather than an apology, if you really are (unreasonably) offended by the idea of apologizing.
    – keshlam
    Feb 24, 2023 at 2:25
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    “It works all the time” - It didn’t this time. Who cares who fault it actually is, you’re the organizer of the event, everything that does or doesn’t get done is your responsibility. As a boss, my response is simply, get your job done.
    – Donald
    Feb 24, 2023 at 6:31

2 Answers 2

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As the organizer, everything that does not work to plan is by definition your fault. If it does work to plan and people don't like it, it's still your fault.

If you don't want that responsibility, or think it's not fair, or not worth it, don't call yourself the organizer. Leave it to someone else to organize that conference.

An apology does not mean you are personally responsible for the problem. But that you acknoledge that it wasn't working and that it wasn't their fault.

I have had organizers apologize for the fact public transport was on strike the day of the conference. Certainly not in their sphere of influence at all, but still... it made the conference a little more inconvenient, they apologized, we all laughed about it.

If you try to weasel out of your responsibility, pointing fingers, putting blame onto others, people will notice. And not the good kind of notice.

An apology does not cost you anything. As you have found out from jotform. Own whatever happened. Be a professional and apologize. Then move on.

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Now after I sent the speakers the form. How do I communicate/explain that to the speakers without apologizing?

"Greeting again to everybody. We've updated the jotform link, so please ignore the last one we sent and use this one instead: [include new link.]

Thank you, [signature]"

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