It has always been a tactic of renegade webmasters to post the hate-mail that they receive. After all, they only received it because of the controversial content that they feature on their sites, so it only makes sense that they’d capitalize on the controversy itself.

It’s not everyday that you come across a major corporation doing this, though. However, now that blogs are becoming part and parcel of any marketing strategy, it looks like that is changing. Indeed, for company’s that rely on a high-profile image as part of their marketing branding strategy, acknowledging your detractors is probably the best way to go.

American Apparel has been no stranger to its share of controversy. The nature of their ads have upset many people over the years. Well, it seems that the company is now embracing that antipathy on their company blog. Recently, the main poster on the American Apparel blog, Spence, has taken to posting the hate-mail that they receive. In his most recent Hate-mail entry, he publishes the following letter:

Fuck you and your horny preteen persona. Your ads are ridiculous and your clothing is overpriced crap. I don’t actually need hot pink terrycloth short shorts sold to me by a 17 year old Guatemalan, thanks. Oh, what, she’s one of your EMPLOYEES?? Oh, well, then, my mistake! Fuck. You.

 Further more, my friend would like to add:

 I’m not sure who is reading this, be it a male chauvinist or a female one at that. And if you have any ounce of respect towards any positive female role model in your life, I would recommend doing her a favor by forwarding our concerns to the creative director of these lewd advertisements. This clip of your employee is quite the impressive video.

 Not only does it feature some dumb downed, souless girl, any moment she speaks up, the camera MAN tells her to SHUT UP. Your soft core porn are tainted with promoting violence (yes emotional, mental and physical) towards the female physique.

 It must feel good to go home at night and think about how the presence of your antagonistic print and video collateral to woman rights are making a real positive change in the world. Hooray for Pro-Ana, Hooray for portraying female sexuality as a submissive character controlled by some fucked up idea that through it she will get to know herself better, and Hooray for making this world even less pleasant to live in.


When a company is willing toacknowledge their detractors on this level, it really shows that they have nothing to hide or be defensive about. And indeed, this is what Web 2.0 is all about: engaging the user on a humanistic level.

As can be seen from the extensive amount of comments on this post, this has obviously been a successful move for American Apparel. In the end, moreover, they come off as more secure, confident, and upfront because they went out of their way to acknowledge that not everyone likes them.

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