Sticks and stones aren’t what is upsetting Forever 21 these days, instead words are totally hurting them, as they’re getting upset at a satire blog WTForever21 for making fun, and have gone ahead and sued the blogger behind it, she says.
WTForever.21’s creator Rachel Kane wrote in to tell Consumerist.com of her saga, noting that the clothing giant and maker of cheap flowy rompers and graphic T-shirts has itself been sued for copyright infringement (designers like Diane Von Furstenberg, Gwen Stefani and Anna Sui), so it’s a bit nutty that they’re upset at her for having the gall to make fun of bedazzled shoes.
Apparently they don’t like being associated with the “f” word, and so have brought out the lawyers.
Wouldn’t it be funny if a major clothing manufacturer which has been sued multiple times for copyright infringement and come under consistent fire for sweatshop labor conditions then threatened to sue someone else for copyright infringement?
Get ready to laugh. On April 23, Los Angeles based retailer and clothing manufacturer Forever 21, sent me (Rachel Kane), the writer behind the satire blog, “WTForever21.com,” a Cease and Desist letter accusing me of copyright infringement, trademark infringement, unfair competition and dilution.
Forever 21 also insists WTForever21.com, which uses pop culture and historical references to lampoon the behemoth retailer’s most unsavory garments, is damaging the company’s reputation by associating the internet “colloquialism” of “WTF” with their company.
Since then, I have responded via my attorney disputing the accusations in hopes that I could continue freely poking fun at bubble shorts and rosettes, but as of yesterday, June 2, Forever 21 has responded with a firm threat to file suit unless I take down the blog. I have until June 10 to decide.
WTForever21.com began little more than a year ago as an exercise in my favorite pastime – complaining. I was a newly unemployed writer and Los Angeles native with nothing on my plate but the anxiety of my dwindling savings, so I started to commit one post a day in an effort to keep my mind from turning mushy.
In November, 2010 the site gained initial attention from the pop culture site Jezebel.com, whose writers have been historically critical of Forever 21. Mentions on many other sites followed, including Time.com, TheFrisky.com and a space on The Huffington Post’s blogger roster.
More than 333,000 views and countless LOLs later, I am employed again but forced with the painful reality of sinking the community and life raft that kept me afloat through tough times last year all because of an irate bully who can’t take a joke.
The only thing I have to console myself with in this defeat is the hope that consumers at large will know just how humorless the people are who make the day glow pink panties they have buy in bulk. If you’re interested in writing about this, my contact information is below or you can respond with questions.
Thanks for your time.
In 2007, Von Furstenberg went to bat against Forever 21 claiming they’d copied one of her smocked dresses, she has since settled with them. Anna Sui, Anthropologie and Gwen Stefani also sued in 2007. What a difference four years and being the plaintiff makes, eh, Forever 21?