People have a love-hate relationship with MTV's "Jersey Shore." For example, we hate that we love watching it. Some companies hate that their brand has been plugged during airings of the show and have pulled their ads. And now retailer Abercrombie & Fitch is so upset after seeing cast members flaunting their gear on TV they're willing to pay them not to wear it! See the picture of Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino wearing in his A&F sweats in Florence? The company cringes when that happens.
Abercrombie released a statement on Tuesday which they called "A Win-Win Situation." According to the Wall Street Journal, the outfitter expressed "deep concern" over Sorrentino's clothing preference and said they were willing to bribe him with a "substantial payment" "to wear an alternate brand."
"We understand that the show is for entertainment purposes, but believe this association is contrary to the aspirational nature of our brand, and may be distressing to many of our fans," the statement continued. Abercrombie also extended the offer to other "Jersey Shore" cast members and said they were "urgently waiting a response."
While we can understand certain higher end brands disliking the association with such reality stars, but Abercrombie seems like the right demographic for the MTV set. In fact, just last year Sorrintino told New York magazine about a t-shirt they'd created in his honor. "Abercrombie & Fitch, their most popular shirt, they told me, is 'Fitchuation.' I mean, where did they get that from? Obviously from myself." Abercrombie did indeed make the shirt.
With all the negative attention Abercrombie has gotten lately from former employee lawsuits and unfairly banning their biggest customer, we wouldn't be shocked if this was all one big publicity stunt. But this isn't the first time a fashion brand has tried to distance itself from the "Jersey Shore." Last year Barney's Creative Ambassador Simon Doonan pointed out in the New York Observer that Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi has suddenly switched bag loyalties from Coach to Gucci. Doonan believes Coach supplied Snooki with the fancy new purse so she wouldn't further taint their own image.
So while brands willingly hand over money or clothing to preserve their dignity the "Jersey Shore" cast are making out like bandits with free swag. Hmm, that doesn't seem right.
If you saw someone on "Jersey Shore" wearing a particular brand would it turn you off from that brand?
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