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Proud Mary keeps on burning

Wed 5 May 2010 In: Events View at Wayback View at NDHA

Katija Vlatkovich It's been a frustrating couple of weeks for Katija Vlatkovich. The creator of K' Rd lesbian night Proud Mary has been double bitch-slapped by the vicious pitfalls of modern technology. First, the Proud Mary Facebook page was targeted by people who complained about its "offensive" material. All the content was stripped and the account vanished completely. There were slightly risqué pictures from a burlesque show at the first event in March - and the Proud Mary concept is heavy on religious imagery. But the level of complaints took the Aucklander by complete surprise. "I went through and was like ok, I don't really get it. A few of the photos I guess could have been mistaken as offensive, but there was nothing too bad." When Vlatkovich contacted Facebook, she says she received a "blasé" response. So she started another page. The Proud Mary logo "Within six hours I got all these complaints about things, even down to the cartoon pictures for the Proud Mary logo, that they were offensive. So obviously someone has been pretty much targeting it. So that's been fun." Vlatkovich lost all the contacts she had gathered through the site. She has since been working to build them back up and promote this Saturday night's Proud Mary Night #2. Yet the online nightmare was far from over. Vlatkovich's personal Facebook and Gmail accounts were then used in what appears to have been a completely unrelated American scam. "Someone broke into my account and pretended to be me for a few hours, trying to get money out of my family and friends. And it went to all my media and PR contacts, everything. Apparently on Flava FM and bFM on Monday morning they were trying to figure out who this Katija Vlatkovich person was, cause everyone got this email saying I was held up at gunpoint in London." For the modern event promoter, Facebook and email are vital communication tools and Vlatkovich concedes the temporary inability to contact people on the web was crippling. "Because everything I have is basically online. So I've learnt my lesson that you have to back up everything. But then again you can only do so much with email - people don't even check their email as often as Facebook anymore." But after a deep sigh, it's now onwards and upwards towards this Saturday's second Proud Mary night for the resolute promoter, who has managed to keep her sense of humour through the frustrating ordeal. "Hopefully there's the will and support out there to keep it going, because I don't have the same marketing strength I did ahead of the first Proud Mary night." The Gladeyes Vlatkovich may not have had a dream marketing run, but she has a line-up that is sure to attract the more alternative lesbian set, along with any women who want to check out a night that is a little different. Saturday's line-up features live music from Auckland female duo The Gladeyes, supported by a bevy of DJs including the Quay St Social Club. Dedicated lesbian venue Candy bar is even shutting down for the night to come and support Proud Mary. Vlatkovich agrees there are a lot of exciting things happening on the Auckland lesbian scene at the moment - and a lot of support and interaction from those running different events and venues. "What's the point of going against each other when we can make a cool scene? We're not that big of a city, so if we all work together we can do it better. Hopefully we can make this a damn cool scene and keep some variety going."   Proud Mary at at 4:20 K'Rd Saturday May 8, from 9pm. Entry is $10, or $5 for anyone who dresses as their favourite religious icon. Kitten Power - 5th May 2010    

Credit: Kitten Power

First published: Wednesday, 5th May 2010 - 8:59am

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