Swedes criticize American Apparel for sexist ads Unisex for him and unisex for her.
Swedes criticize American Apparel for sexist ads Unisex for him and unisex for her.

Clothing brand American Apparel receives severe criticism in Sweden, for sexist marketing. The male model showing a unisex shirt wears it buttoned with jeans, whilst the female model sports only panties – and wears the shirt unbuttoned.

PÅ SVENSKA: American Apparel anmäls för sexistisk marknadsföring

The LA-based company, which has a strong sustainability profile, and on its’ offiicial website claims to support both immigrants and the rights of the LGBT-movement, is thought to demean women on the very same site.

On the blogg ”en blommig tekopp” Emelie Eriksson writes: ”Unisex. UNI and SEX. What is it really about?”, and states wryly that it could mean sex, at least when women wear American Apparels shirts. In screenshot after screenshot she shows pictures of fully clothed men modelling the unisex shirt, while the women are scantily dressed and posing provocatively.

And she isn’t the only person to react. Reklamombudsmannen (RO), a self-regulation organization founded by the industry, received the first reports on Tuesday this week.

– We have received som reports, confirms ombudsman Elisabeth Trotzig, but declines to comment on the pictures until the matter has been settled.

Reklamombudsmannen works for ethical marketing communication by receiving complaints about advertising and assessing if advertising is following the Consolidated ICC Code.

Although American Apparel has been reported by several people to RO, American Apparel may have nothing to worry about. Only advertising aimed at the Swedish market can be assessed and American Apparel’s site is based in LA. If reports are filed in other countries in the EU, a cross-border complaint could force an international investigation by organizations similar to RO.

Metro has, without success, attempted to reach representatives for American Apparel, to give the company a chance to reply to the criticism. 

PÅ SVENSKA: American Apparel anmäls för sexistisk marknadsföring

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