Our Twitter account @FollowMeRecord was set up initially by three work colleagues sat at the pub trying to brainstorm ideas on how to raise money for the charity Children in Need. Robert Whitmarsh, Harry Gill and Sarah Kutchins.
Originally our list of sponsors were listed on the background image of our Twitter page but we were asked to remove/alter it by one of the donors, and ever since the Pudsey Bear image has been there.
Admittedly with hindsight we were naive not to put any T&C's and how the money was being raised. Well hopefully this will answer some of your questions. We canvassed several local businesses and individuals asking each what the maximum they would be willing to donate. Totting up the totals we had a "Potential" £7300. Now as a few of you have asked, "Why not just donate the £7300 and be done with it?" The best way I can try to explain this is as follows: If you were doing a sponsored silence, say £1 an hour, you would go to individuals asking what they would be willing to sponsor you for and on having completed the task go and collect the funds. The same concept applies here.
The error on our part was not mentioning that we had a target cap to reach of just under 15,000 (£7300) followers and therefore implying that there were unlimited funds available. Big mistake and I hold my hands up for it.
Now it has come to our attention this weekend that several copycat schemes have arisen mentioned by @DaveGorman and we are in no way linked or affiliated with them. The one's mentioned are;
and maybe more...
After reading Dave's blog I think those accounts have been closed. @DaveGorman has my telephone number that I've used for years and if he wishes to disclose it because he thinks we're fraudulent then so be it. Sarah is putting up a refreshed list of our sponsors on our Twitter background page and assures me it will be live by the end of working hours today.
Hopefully this has cleared up some of your questions, we are not bogus, it was a good idea but maybe lacking execution. You can donate directly by visiting http://www.bbc.co.uk/pudsey/donate/