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Old 05-15-2013, 08:05 AM
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Default This Abercrombie Debacle...Opinions?

Judging by the comments on the articles, this is a controversial subject, so...be nice.

http://elitedaily.com/news/world/abe...es-fat-chicks/
Quote:
Anyone who’s been to Abercrombie & Fitch in the last few years has probably noticed that they don’t carry XL or XXL sizes of women’s clothing because they don’t want overweight women wearing their brand.

According to this popular teen clothing retailer, fat chicks will just never be a part of the “in” crowd.

They take a big risk with this tactic because two of Abercrombie’s biggest competitors, H&M and American Eagle, both offer XXL sizes for men and women.

The largest women’s pants available at Abercrombie are a size 10, while H&M goes up to 16 and American Eagle goes even farther to 18.
Abercrombie’s attitude towards plus-sized women derives from CEO Mike Jeffries. Robin Lewis, author of The New Rules of Retail, spoke to Business Insider about the kind of people Jeffries wants advertising his brand.

“He doesn’t want larger people shopping in his store, he wants thin and beautiful people,” Lewis said. “He doesn’t want his core customers to see people who aren’t as hot as them wearing his clothing. People who wear his clothing should feel like they’re one of the ‘cool kids.’”
Lewis said that the only reason Abercrombie offers XL and XXL in men’s sizes is to appeal to large athletes.

In a 2006 interview with Salon, Jeffries confirmed that the communication between hot people is his primary marketing tactic.

“It’s almost everything. That’s why we hire good-looking people in our stores. Because good-looking people attract other good-looking people, and we want to market to cool, good-looking people. We don’t market to anyone other than that,” he said.

Jeffries also told Salon that he wasn’t bothered by excluding fat people. In fact, he said that not limiting his ideal demographic would make his clothing less desirable.

“In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids,” he told the site. “Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely. Those companies that are in trouble are trying to target everybody: young, old, fat, skinny. But then you become totally vanilla. You don’t alienate anybody, but you don’t excite anybody, either,” he told Salon.
One might wonder why Mike Jeffries only wants to be in the company of good-looking people. That curiosity will end after seeing what this freak looks like.

After seeing a picture of Mike Jeffries, it can only be concluded that he was never around good-looking people as a kid and is now making up for the glamorous youth he wishes he had.
And then this guy's response, I
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:21 AM
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I think the CEO is a douchebag. And I'm a young, petite woman who could fit into their clothes if I wanted to. Can't say I want to anymore. Unfortunately, their products tend to be more marketed to the middle school/high school age group, which means my boycotting won't change my behavior too much anyway, but seriously? It's one thing to hire only "good looking" models (after all, sex sells) - but to deliberately discriminate about who buys your clothes and be so up front/rude about it? Yeah, no thanks.

PS - best video ever! Made me laugh.
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:26 AM
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As someone who has worked there.. abercrombie is and likely forever will be, a shady sh*t brand of clothing.

They didn't have to prove it to me with this message, EVERYONE KNEW where abercrombie's stance was on "unattractive" people. How could we not have known? Look at their ads, look at their sizing, look who they market to!

- They burn clothes that don't sell when they change seasons (instead of donating them because ew poor people)
- They only hire a certain "kind" of people to work in front of the store. As someone who was a perfectly healthy 16 year old who was paid to stand out front or wander around while employees who could've used lighter duty...we had a pregnant woman and a man who hurt his knee were told day after day to do labor in the back)
- From management telling you to be on the look out for potential people to hire who fit the "look"
- Firing pregnant people/people who gained weight was certainly not unheard of

I think giving clothes to the homeless is a nice gesture, I mean hey, people are helping.
As for what it is going to do in the long run other than give people a moment of HAHA and make people fit a bit better...
I'm sure this is how the CEO of Abercrombie is reacting honestly

I say it's a nice gesture and it does feel good but frankly, you could buy a lot more clothes for them that aren't A&F and I honestly doubt it will make an impact.

The best thing people can do I believe is just realize that
1. There is nothing attractive about wearing clothing that is plastered with a logo. So on a purely vanity front, why are you PAYING to be a billboard for this place
2. The quality is iffy at best, especially for the price you can do MUCH BETTER
3. Stop supporting the brand, because obviously the place is full of douchebaggery
4. Take a moment and realize that A&F is a store for 16 year old teenagers trying to be cool. Go to a grown up store
and sadly
5. understand while he is the first CEO to say it maybe, this is an incredibly common part of the clothing industry. The kind of "marketing towards the thin"... way to fix it? If a store doesn't offer clothing in your size, don't shop there. Don't go digging through racks in hope of finding something, if there aren't your sizes READILY AVAILABLE and out... leave. Find awesome stores that cater to your bodytype and who you are. There are plenty.

The only way to fix this problem is stop supporting these places and instead of flashing so much hate towards A&F (because yay publicity) give some love to a store you believe in! Wear their clothes, wear them proudly, show them off and support them. Write articles about CEO's including models of all body types and races, of there being no tiny ridiculous "plus size section" and instead the store being all inclusive, of pricing being fair.

From what I've seen on teens these days, the days of A&F being cool are a bit at a close anyway. Which is a welcome relief.
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:32 AM
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Well here's my thing... the dude can think "fat chicks" are ugly if he wants to. Tastes vary, nobody finds the same things attractive, and that's ok. Plenty of people think fat chicks are attractive. And it's HIS company, so he can do whatever he wants. I've waffled about a hundred times between whether I think he's just real dumb or he's a marketing genius with all the publicity he's getting out of this. Plenty of people hate fat chicks, too, so for every person who is outraged and boycotting there is probably someone else who is silently fist pumping and making a trip to Abercrombie.

And honestly I'm not completely sure why people are so outraged. It's not like our society doesn't basically silently endorse and embrace the myth of the objective standard of beauty. Anyone who is too fat (or too skinny or too short or too tall or too anything, for that matter) is well aware of society's position on fat chicks. He's just saying it out loud. Again, not sure if he's a marketing genius or a marketing moron. But the whole thing just gets a big "meh" from me.
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:40 AM
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I didn't shop in Abercrombie as a teen, because I didn't want to be associated with the kind of people who DID shop there...and I think I was in 9th grade when I found out about the racism and discrimination that went on within the company. There have been plenty of lawsuits against them, and I don't know why all of a sudden this is blowing up?

I'd be pretty horrified if the company didn't go under over this, and the CEO actually knows what he's doing by saying such douche-y things. But I guess Sass is right...for everyone who gives a **** about people's rights and equality and not being a huge creep, there's another person who thinks everyone should look like them and that they're superior, and who will spend money on a label that shows it.
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:48 AM
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I worked for Abercrombie (manager at Hollister) for 2 weeks. They basically have this program that if you have a college degree, you can train to be a manager if you fit "the look."

It was the worst 2 weeks of a job I have EVER had.

I had to go recruiting one day at UCF for employees (look for people with "the look" and ask them if they're interested in an Abercrombie career lol). The 2 other male managers I went with from other stores were just terrible people. They'd make comments like "we're not talking to her, she looks like a T-Rex."

The other managers at my store would make fun of customers and people interviewing. Anyone who "kind of but not fully" fit "the look" were hired for the back. The position in the front of the stores and on the registers were called "models."

Abercrombie has always been a sleazy company. They've been in lawsuits for discrimination, they've ridden the fine line between advertising and porn (keep in mind their core demographic is 14-22), etc, etc. At this point, I'd expect the CEO to be nothing but a douche canoe.

I understand that certain companies want you to have "the look" as an employee. It's why waitresses at Hooters wear those tight white t-shirts and little shorts, why Disney has auditions for their "face" characters, etc. However, we're talking about shunning a huge potential CUSTOMER base. Not just with size restrictions (which to me isn't a big deal considering there are stores that only sell larger sizes like Layne Bryant, Big and Tall, and vice versa), but with picking and choosing who is "cool" and "hip."

It's like a marketing version of bullying. If you wear our clothes, you're cool- but only if WE decide you are allowed to wear them. This quote sums this up:

Quote:
“In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids,” he told the site. “Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely. Those companies that are in trouble are trying to target everybody: young, old, fat, skinny. But then you become totally vanilla. You don’t alienate anybody, but you don’t excite anybody, either,” he told Salon.
Alienating people and making them feel terrible about themselves is the basis of discrimination. I don't think you're cool so you can't wear our clothes. Bullying.

Honestly, though- I don't even think kids think Abercrombie is "cool" anymore. They've had to cut their prices WAY down, run sales (they were a company who used to hardly run them), and I hardly ever see anyone wearing their clothing anymore.

I think it's AWESOME that people are passing out their clothes to the homeless population. GOOD. Did the CEO really think that the backlash wouldn't be stronger than the support?
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Old 05-15-2013, 08:52 AM
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I can't say publicly what I would do to him if I met him on the street

I hate that attitude.

He's obviously had serious bullying issues as a child, and wants to be a cool kid.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ~Jessie~ View Post
Did the CEO really think that the backlash wouldn't be stronger than the support?
Is it, though? We live in a society that tacitly embraces his opinion. But it's not like people who agree with him are going to hold a rally giving out free clothes to conventionally attractive people or shout YEA PREACH IT BRO all over FB... they're going to quietly murmur among themselves and shop at his stores. Probably while he pats himself on the back for all the free advertising he's getting.
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:01 AM
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Here is a sampling of their many lawsuits over the years:

Quote:
Abercrombie and Fitch Model Says He Was Forced to Masturbate On Set, Now He’s Suing for $1 Million
http://fashionista.com/2012/06/an-ab...-for-1million/

Quote:
Lawsuit: Abercrombie CEO’s Creepy Private Jet Requires Pantless Staff, Phil Collins Music
http://nymag.com/thecut/2012/10/laws...ess-staff.html

Quote:
Abercrombie and Fitch has been fined $115,264 for discrimination, four years after employees at the Mall of America store refused to allow a family member to accompany an autistic girl into a fitting room.
http://minnesota.publicradio.org/dis...imination-suit

Quote:
Clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF) hires a disproportionately white sales force, puts minorities in less-visible jobs and cultivates a virtually all-white image in its catalogs and elsewhere, a lawsuit charges.
http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money...rcrombie_x.htm
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Old 05-15-2013, 09:01 AM
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I never get upset or worked up over things like this, but I find it sick and messed up and think the company should be destroyed. I don't think kids these days should be hearing things like this, or having these ideas. Maybe it's "silently" endorsed elsewhere, but when someone comes out and SAYS that. No. Just no. It's disgusting and horrible and no one should support this company ever again and if people actually do, I have lost hope for mankind. I don't care if you like their clothes. After what was said, anyone wearing it will be basically symbolizing their superiority to others, whether it's intentional or not. And that's wrong.
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