I couldn’t resist this one…. One more little “buy local” rant and then I’ll (try to) leave it alone for a while.
As a follow up to my “Meditations on Buying Local” post, this shirt appeared on this link at Rivals.com….
I’m sure many of you saw this already since a lot of people got a kick out of it and posted it on facebook especially here in Michigan where we are based. For those of you who aren’t in Michigan and may not know, Michigan State University’s team name is the Spartans and their colors are green and white, but the University Of Michigan Wolverines’ fight song contains the opening line “Hail to the Victors” and their colors are maize and blue. Needless to say this was a pretty bad mistake to mix them up and put them on the same t-shirt. I hate to sound like a broken record but putting your loyalties aside for a second and your urge to talk some smack if you’re a Wolverine or a Spartan, what this really is is a commercial for buying LOCAL. Do you think a local Michigan based t-shirt company would make a mistake as ridiculous as this? No way. Why would you want your school’s logo hijacked by some national corporate brand like this that doesn’t have a clue about it?
Now granted college athletics is huge business and national brands Adidas and Nike are the official outfitters of the sports teams at the two schools so you can’t really avoid buying the apparel from a national company. That’s the way it is. But I think the point here is there are local independent retailers you can support that sell licensed t-shirts with your alma mater on them who would never make a mistake like this. Local merchants have a feel for the local community and have a vested interest in it. National chains….not as much as evidenced by this shirt. Maybe that is a generalization that isn’t 100% fair, but c’mon. This actually made it to their website. Not one person at Pink cared enough or bothered to check on this? A business sports reporter actually pointed it out to Victoria’s Secret which is what prompted them to pull it off the site. Once again our message is not to boycott national chain stores, but rather in a case like this let Pink stick to what they do best and when you are considering buying some gear for your local team consider a local option first. If Pink bothered to get the shirt right and you could buy Pink products from local merchants then I guess it would be different, but they didn’t and you can’t.