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Old 16th December 2017
  #252
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Uli Behringer's Avatar
 

Dear all,

A few days ago some of our web content was exposed due to a system error and as a result confidential product information leaked. Since this happened we've seen a large number of responses from you, many of which have been critical but also very exciting and supportive.
In the spirit of transparency I would like to take the opportunity to explain what happened and also provide you with some insight into how we work as an organization.

Why authenticity is our most valuable currency
Let me state first that as the head of the organization I will always take responsibility when things go wrong. Rather than questioning our people who posted the explanation and attacking their integrity, I kindly ask you to direct your concerns at me if you feel the need to vent.

We have a very simple but very rigid policy: all our people who post on social media must display their real names and full signatures – without exception.

We always focus on the facts, stay out of emotional arguments and if we screw up, we stand up and take responsibility. This will never change.
We at MUSIC Tribe believe that authenticity is the most valuable currency we have, both internally and externally in communication with you the customer.
We are fully aware that some people and competitors don’t like us and will try to discredit no matter what we say. That is perfectly fine as everyone is entitled to their opinion.

How we develop products
Over the past 30 years we have built a highly sophisticated and complex enterprise. With 4,000 people based in 16 different locations worldwide, we have heavily invested in systems and automation integral to providing you with products that make a difference in our customers’ lives. Imagine having to manage over 4,000 active products while concurrently developing more than 500 new ones.
This can only be achieved through a highly integrated PLM (Product Lifecycle Management) system which is coupled with our SAP Hybris CMS (Web Content Management System) and our ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) system. If you look up SAP Hybris, you will notice that this is not a simple web tool but a complex content management system / e-commerce platform with integrated workflows.
So how does the system work? Everything starts with the Concept Stage (MS1) where our Customer Solution Managers engage with what we call VIP’s (forum members, key artists, opinion leaders, commercial partners, etc.) to gather ideas from the market and create an MID (Marketing Information Document).
I have attached an example for our Model D Synth. It contains key features, renderings and a desired delivery date and retail price.
Once this MID is approved, the R&D Development process begins and the product now moves through all remaining 8 milestones. I have also attached our Milestone Overview PDF for people who may be interested.
At every stage, people consecutively add information to the system whether it is a feature list, rendering, packaging information as well as specs, compliance certificates and quick start guides etc.
The PLM system is based on gated and highly automated processes. When the product ultimately reaches the sales stage (MS7), the website automatically goes live and shows all the related product content. Similarly, the moment a product is officially discontinued that web content is removed from the active product catalogue and indicated with a Legacy banner. Our dedicated Singapore team manages hundreds of workflows and massive amounts of code to make all this work together.

Why product information leaked
While we constantly work on improving our systems, in this instance things didn’t go according to plan. In this recent event our programmers accidentally disabled code that should have prevented product information to be published until it hits the dedicated Milestone 7. The moment we were made aware of the leak, we immediately removed those pages and trust me it was a hectic night to say the very least!
As Michael from our LA office posted, at no stage was this a marketing ploy and as many can see, the leak has been quite damaging for our company. If we wanted to share information we could have simply posted it on of the forums as we often do. We're always happy to engage with you in different social media and forum communities as this has become an integral part of our customer engagement.

Once again we sincerely apologize for the confusion and misinformation this leak has caused. As we stated earlier, these leaked product feature lists are part of early concept stages. However we are confident that some of these will turn into actual products. If you have any comments we would very much appreciate your feedback.

Thanks for listening :-)

Uli

P.S. The Model D production has been delayed due to our massive factory move which was more challenging than we had estimated. We are confident to ship the first few hundred units from our factory by yearend, however full mass production will move into Q1 next year.
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