Dear TSC 2017 Speakers and Participants,

I wish to respond to the accusations by the Center for Consciousness Studies (CCS) with regards to Crystal Globe’s involvement the organization of The Science of Consciousness (TSC) Conference in Shanghai. We are disappointed that they have chosen to unfairly cast Crystal Globe in a negative light in order to justify their unilateral decision to move the Conference to San Diego.  Furthermore, Crystal Globe has already made a substantial financial investment in booking hotels, paying for the venue, media, and promoting partners. 

In December of 2015 Dr. Stuart Hameroff the Founding Director of CCS visited Shanghai and awarded Crystal Globe the right to host the event in 2017.  During this visit, we jointly signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a joint venture company that would include an exclusive agreement to operate The Science of Consciousness Conference. To establish the company, Crystal Globe would provide capital and Stuart would provide the TSC intellectual property and an exclusive commitment to serve the new company for five years. 

Complications arose when translating the Memorandum of Understanding into a contract.   The lawyers drafting the contract found that the University of Arizona owns the rights to TSC and not Dr. Hameroff.  We began discussions with the University of Arizona regarding the rights to TSC and began negotiating a separate agreement with Dr. Hameroff, all the while simultaneously working toward producing the TSC Shanghai event. 

Disagreements arose in our negotiations with Dr. Hameroff regarding this contract.  Rather than focus our common interest on making TSC Shanghai a success and postpone our collaboration negotiations until after the event, Dr. Hameroff began making demands that put Crystal Globe at greater financial risk.  This lead to his issuing an ultimatum that we either meet his demands by the evening or he would “pull out and move TSC elsewhere.” 

It was shortly after this that CCS issued an e-mail announcing that CCS has terminated Crystal Globe’s participation in this year’s TSC Conference, followed days later by the announcement of relocation to San Diego.  During the interim, attempts to mediate a dialogue between Dr. Hameroff and myself were declined by him. 

As a semi-government entity, our mandate is to serve the people to benefit society.  Our motivation for hosting TSC in Shanghai was to raise greater awareness and promote consciousness research in China.  Contrary to CCS claims, we did not threaten to interfere with their efforts to change venues or partners.  On the contrary, we were willing to offer support to whomever CCS chose to work with in order to have TSC still held in Shanghai.

Much of CCS’s allegations of impropriety come from miscommunication regarding the venue and hotel.  Crystal Globe had booked the Shanghai Expo Centre (where the World Expo was held in 2010) to host TSC event and the Shanghai Intercontinental Expo hotel to accommodate the speakers and participants.  However, the CCS incorrectly posted that the event was going to take place at the Shanghai New International Expo Center that resulted in a lot of confusion that Crystal Globe staff attempted to address. 

There are three Intercontinental Hotels in Shanghai and CCS had posted the Intercontinental Shanghai Pudong and not the Intercontinental Shanghai Expo next to the Expo Center where the Conference was to be held.  A standard form from the Intercontinental Shanghai Expo was sent to all of the participants in an attempt to clear this confusion.  This form, which was given to us by the hotel, included the request for credit card information that CCS refers to in their complaint and insinuation of improprieties.

We have 35 rooms at the InterContinental Shanghai Expo that were booked and paid for and originally intended for the speakers.  We have also paid the deposit for the Shanghai Expo Centre.  Several key dignitaries including the Vice Mayor of Shanghai have already agreed to attend the opening.  Furthermore, significant marketing has already begun among consciousness related communities and online.

As it stands, we are still addressing fallout from CCS’s disappointing actions and assessing our options moving forward.  Woodenfish, a Buddhist organization are launching a Conference on Buddhism and New Technology immediately after TSC (June 10-15) and moved their event from Beijing to Shanghai so that participants would be able to attend both events.  Although TSC has relocated to San Diego, the Buddhism and New Technology Conference is still happening in Shanghai.

If CCS cannot resolve the travel and registration issues that they are responsible for causing and if participants inconvenienced by CCS actions are still interested in coming to Shanghai in June, we are open to organizing a consciousness related event. Some of the plenary speakers and workshop organizers have already offered to speak should we decide to continue to organize an event at that time.  Many guests from China including Buddhist, Taoist, and Qi Gong Masters including the former head of the Chinese military parapsychology unit and his subjects with unique abilities were invited by Crystal Globe to attend TSC Shanghai.  We have also offered to host the East West Forum organized by Dayalbagh Education Institute should they chose to come to Shanghai as planned.

We have receipts and communications between CCS and Crystal Globe to corroborate all of the statements in this mail. We apologize for the inconveniences to speakers, and participants affected by the dramatic changes of the past week.  Despite our differences, I’d also like to wish CCS and TSC in San Diego continued success.  Ultimately, we are all on the same team.    

Wendy Ma, 

President of Crystal Globe

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