From Coke’s flower power to Kendall Jenner’s Pepsi ad – how ads co-opt protest

 

It’s a unique skill to have #boycottpepsi trending among both the right and the left. It managed to alienate both sides of an increasingly polarised consumer universe,” says Nicola Kemp, trends editor at advertising trade magazine Campaign, who points out that the ad was made by an inhouse team at Pepsi, which may be why there is a sense that nobody thought to point out its deficiencies before it aired. Kemp argues that not only was the ad tone-deaf, it also failed to make any political point at all, co-opting the imagery, without taking a stand. “You get a lot of people saying we’re in a state of perpetual outrage, that brands should always be aware that taking a stand can create a backlash, and that it’s better to stand for something than for nothing. But in effect it did both: it stood for nothing, with these anodyne signs, and it still created a backlash.” What about the idea that all publicity is good publicity? “There is a growing conversation within marketing that outrage is a form of social currency, and that social currency equates to sales,” Kemp says. “But that is an overly simplistic point of view. I do think that, honestly, no brand would set out to create this sort of response.”

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Stella McCartney’s flashmob finale ditches strutting for dancing

 

McCartney’s fashion week raison d’être has always been about more than aesthetics. Her pioneering anti-fur and anti-leather stance, widely considered the hippy eccentricity of a Beatles daughter when she launched her label 15 years ago, has since been adopted by Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger and Giorgio Armani. Last week, her brand released its first annual environmental profit and loss accounts, examining the environmental impact of the business from raw material to retail. This focus on sustainability reflects a nascent change across the industry, as fashion responds to a new generation of millennial consumers who expect their clothes to reflect their values.

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Advocating for Ethical Photos

A year ago Reboot shared their principles for “a more empathetic approach to taking and using photos.” It’s admirable to see an NGO take this step, but even more so how they acknowledged in their recent post that it’s been “surprisingly hard to operationalize these guidelines consistently.” Lauren Gardner writes: A camera is obtrusive. Before taking a single frame, Patrick Ainslie, one of our skilled photographers, gradually introduces it as a non-threatening object. He walks into an interview with the camera slung over his shoulder. As the trust and conversation builds, he progressively makes it more visible—first by putting it on a table, then holding it in his hands.

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Zandra Rhodes: weaving a new society

The country is utterly reliant on the ready-made-garment (RMG) industry, which provides 80% of the GDP. Some Western brands talk about production there as if they are NGOs, producing much-needed jobs and emancipating women. But we’re starting to see it’s more complicated than that. The fast-fashion system cannot guarantee decent conditions and fair wages. A stark example of this can be seen as we drive north out of Dhaka to the Savar district. This area once housed the Rana Plaza complex, which collapsed on 24 April 2013, killing 1,133 people. In Savar it’s business as usual. Scores of buildings that look like apartment blocks but are actually garment facilities are working non-stop to produce clothes for the Western market.

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First full body transplant is two years away, surgeon claims

I think I’d want to approve the body first. The one I’ve got was no prize draw.

A surgeon says full-body transplants could become a reality in just two years. Sergio Canavero, a doctor in Turin, Italy, has drawn up plans to graft a living person’s head on to a donor body and claims the procedures needed to carry out the operation are not far off.

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