As more awareness comes to the insensitivity surrounding the topic of rape, it’s mind boggling that any brand manager would make light of it.
Yet, clothing company Forever 21 went there.
One of its latest offerings is a T-shirt that reads, “Don’t say maybe if you want to say no.” The shirt was marketed to men.
Many saw it as a brand manager’s attempt to stir up controversy by reducing an extraordinarily important and weighty topic—sexual consent—to a mere T-shirt
slogan. It could even be perceived as an excuse for sexual assault.
RELATED: Use this guide for effective crisis communications tactics.
The justified outrage on Twitter was predictably swift:
Forever 21 removed the shirt and issued the following statement:
Forever 21 strives to exemplify the highest ethical standards and takes feedback and product concerns very seriously. With regards to the t-shirt in
question, upon receiving feedback from our customers, we took immediate action to have it removed from our website. We sincerely apologize to anyone who
was offended by the product.
Are shirts like these made with the idea that they’ll undoubtedly be pulled and that’s there’s no such thing as bad press? There seems to be no justifiable
or ethical explanation for this kind of a marketing decision. What do you think, PR Daily readers?