You could have:
- Admitted wrongdoing. Not spouted crap about “unhappiness with the controversy.” But you could have paraphrased the title of Kickstarter’s apology: “We were wrong”
- Explained how and why things went wrong, without considering that explanation to excuse all wrongdoing. For instance, listing the factors and then saying something similar to, I don’t know: “These factors don’t excuse our decision but we hope they add clarity to how we arrived at it.”
- Make clear what will be different in the future, learn from a mistake: in Ron Lindsay’s case, he could simply acknowledge that when giving the opening speech at a conference, sounding as though you question the purpose/necessity of that conference is not appropriate. In this case, Kickstarter is prohibiting the funding of seduction guides.
- Make a -not empty- gesture showing you mean what you say. You could create more/increase funding for Women in Secularism programs. “Kickstarter will donate $25,000 to an anti-sexual violence organization called RAINN.”
Are the circumstances different? Hells yes. Kickstarter enabled funding for a guide to sexually harassing/assaulting women. That is much worse than Ron Lindsay’s speech could ever have been.
“Decide that you’re going to sit in a position where you can rub her leg and back. Physically pick her up and sit her on your lap. Don’t ask for permission. Be dominant. Force her to rebuff your advances.”
“Sex: Pull out your cock and put her hand on it. Remember, she is letting you do this because you have established yourself as a LEADER. Don’t ask for permission, GRAB HER HAND, and put it right on your dick.”
Even with only 2 hours to make a decision, if they felt they couldn’t make a sensible decision, they should have been able to tell they needed more time: putting that kickstarter fund in limbo would have been a good start while they gathered/verified information.
Despite the situation with Kickstarter being worse, their acknowledgement of their responsibility in the problem, their sincerity of apology- that $25,000 to an anti-sexual violence organization is 30 times what Kickstarter made off the guide- and their change of policy going forward makes me feel more kindly towards them, than to the CFI Board, the leaders of a nonprofit organization.
And favoring a corporation over a nonprofit is not my general tendency.