It’s been a while since I’ve written a letter to a brand and in the meantime, a couple of them have really disappointed me. I needed to get this off my chest and I’d like to hear your thoughts about it too. And if you have something you want to say to any other brand, feel free to write your own letter in the comments. So, here goes:
Dear nail polish brands,
why can’t you seem to be doing business in an ethical way lately? First, Ciate, you send cease and desist orders to bloggers to remove images of their DIY caviar manicures on the grounds that, because you are in the process of trademarking the terms “caviar manicure” and “caviar nails”, whoever uses these terms is infringing on your copyright. And to make matters worse, you haven’t even invented the caviar manicure, so I’m not sure why you should have the right to copyright it in the first place…
Then, Sinful Colors you “borrow” photos from a couple of bloggers, whose watermarks you have removed, and used them, without their explicit permission in your promotional campaign. And to add insult to injury, those photos weren’t even of your own products! The bloggers were wearing Color Club and Opi nail polishes! Like, seriously?! And even after you’ve “apologized”, those displays were still in stores?!
At least China Glaze apologized for real, offering compensation and a job to Abigail Larson when they used her artwork without permission in their Wicked campaign. Such mistakes shouldn’t happen in the first place, but at least they’ve taken responsibility for it and did the decent thing, which is why I’ll still support the brand. Of course it’s not just nail polish brands that are misbehaving, but they seem to be doing it more often lately, which is very worrying.
I feel very uneasy now when I see your counter in the shop, Sinful Colors. I was so glad when you first came here but now I’m not sure I want to support you, or Ciate, anymore. And if more brands follow your bad examples, soon I won’t be able to buy nail polish at all. But why are so many brands making such stupid blunders in the first place? It’s not like they don’t know stealing is wrong, and even if it is the fault of one single, lazy employee, well, isn’t there anyone who checks what they’re doing?
The blogosphere has changed the way people do business and it’s much harder for brands to get away with this crap now than it was in the past and thank goodness for that! Once you let down your customers, it’s very hard to get that trust back. If you act straight away to set your wrongs to right, like China Glaze did, then you’ll be forgiven. Otherwise they’ll shop elsewhere. And it’s always sad when someone decides to boycott a brand. So, next time, think twice about what you’re doing.
I really hope that these are isolated episodes and that, the next time I’ll talk about you, Sinful Colors and Ciate, it’ll be in a more positive light. Goodbye for now,