Skanky advertising methods tarnish image

When I first heard of American Apparel, it was touted for its admirable qualities: made in the United States and sweatshop free. Sweatshop free, that’s great! Right? [I’ve never bought (or owned) an article of American Apparel clothing, at least in part because the sizes run so small.]

I’d like such a stance to be made on some basis, though, not just because it can be done. I’d like to think that such traits would translate to other aspects of the company’s image.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t in this case.

Apparently, American Apparel also has a reputation (I learned this today) for provocative advertising. Checking out its website, it’s easy to see it earned this label (see here for a new magazine interview, via the American Apparel website.

I studied advertising, and I understand that, in some respects at least, all publicity is good publicity. However, I’m averse to clothing being advertised via mostly nude models. (I’m not going to post a link to this image on the American Apparel website.)

This image also unnerved me. This image is from i-D magazine, and it’s not an ad; it is part of a story layout in that British magazine. Still, American Apparel is embracing the image by showcasing it on its website (and by emailing it out to its mailing list!).

There’s a discussion on the American Apparel website, also one here, and one here in the Etsy forums, where I first saw it.

Can a company not be upright it all it does? I lost any respect I had for the company based on its treatment of workers when I saw its advertising schemes today.


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