On March 16th 2018, We uploaded a short post on our instagram about a t-shirt that Topman had recently marketed for sale on their website. The t-shirt has caused outrage across the country and has featured on numerous news pages and social media posts and rightly so.
Topman (the male equivalent of the female counterpart ‘Topshop’ who make up a large part of the Arcadia group) are very well established throughout the UK and most of Europe.
The t-shirt pictured above has caused massive controversy over the past few days as many people have been angered and believe the t-shirt to be a reference to the Hillsborough Disaster of 1989 where 96 people were killed.
The t-shirt in question has the number 96 printed on the back of the garment along with the phrase ‘What goes around comes back around’. The t-shirt also has the word Karma printed vertically down one of the sleeves. Topman state that the t-shirt was designed based on a Bob Marley track that was re-released in 1996.
Topman has since apologised and have removed the item from their websites and stores by releasing the following statement “Topman apologises unreservedly for any offence caused by this T-shirt. The design was inspired by a Bob Marley track with the number referring to the year of re-release. The garment has been removed from sale online and in stores.”
Topman are currently worth £1.8 billion according to Wikipedia and have a net income of £357.5 million. They have stores based on nearly every high street throughout Britain and are a staple piece to mens affordable yet stylish fashion industry.
Do you think that this mistake will affect Topman’s sales? Do you believe that it was a genuine miss understanding? Will the UK’s leading brands and companies learn from this and prevent from making similar mistakes in the future? H&M may be a little to late.
Photo credits: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/mar/16/topman-withdraws-t-shirt-from-sale-after-hillsborough-row#img-1 and https://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/sick-offensive-topman-96-shirt-14418324