Op Ed. Steve & Barry's vs. the Fashion Blogosphere by Fashiontribes. Second City Style Fashion Blog


R.I.P Here lied a picture of a black wool and silk dress (or skirt and top). The skirt was fitted (hourglass) and rested at the knee. The best of the lot.



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R.I.P Here lied a photo of an ensemble that I could never imagine SJP wearing (well maybe when she was 14 and on ‘Square Pegs’). Short khaki shorts, a powder blue t-shirt and a sleeveless gray hoodie finished with red Chucks (Converse).


R.I.P above lied a flimsy cotton charcoal with teal hemmed sleeveless night shirt looking dress. It was paired with a purple t-shirt underneath.


R.I.P Above used to be a photo of cuffed-capri jeans (can you say summer of ’05?), an aqua and white patterned sleeveless babydoll tank and a pair of tan flip-flops.

Public domain or private property?

I decided to re-post this blog entry by Lesley at Fashiontribes in it’s entirety because I feel she nailed the real issue here. I could not have said it better. PR firms love us when they need us, but God forbid, we don’t sing their clients praises even thought they don’t always deserve them.
– Lauren Dimet, Editor-in-Chief, Second City Style

Update: The photos have been replaced since I was contacted by Steve & Barry’s counsel as well. 3/20/07

Budget chain Steve & Barry’s recently launched the press blitz for the new Bitten Sarah Jessica Parker line. They promised an exclusive preview of the line to Oprah magazine and other traditional long-line media outlets – who promptly leaked the photos on the Internet, where they ended up widely circled & easily accessible. The Budget Fashionista obtained the pix from the public domain, and ran them with a less than glowing review (CLICK HERE to read it).  Steve & Barry’s wrote TBF (below) explaining the photos were "wrongfully obtained" from a password protected site not open to the public, and they need to be taken down.

Not only did TBF not sneak photos off a site illegally, but hellooooooo, this is the age of the Internet, and once the fashionable cat is out of the bag, it’s out. Times have changed. Interestingly, firms crave coverage of their products from the blogs, but then act like this. On a side note, something I particularly love about certain large & influential PR firms (who shall remain nameless to protect the guilty) is the hard-sell pitches they send to fashion bloggers, but then fail to give any of us a decent seat at one of their fashion shows, or even invite any of us to fancy product launches or events, limiting the invite list to dinosaur print editors only. These companies fail to realize the reason blogs are popular is because unlike traditional magazines with a specific "voice" and a faceless masthead, bloggers are real people – with real opinions (which companies could probably benefit from). Unlike the blogs, long-line media is beholden to their roster of advertisers; it’s specious (on their part) to talk about their "editorial" content, when in truth, it should probably come with an "advertorial" warning label. 

The letter from Steve & Barry’s Lawyer to TBF:

To Whom It May Concern:

Good Morning, I am the Assistant General Counsel for Steve & Barry’s asking you to please remove the images of the Bitten collection from the above captioned website and any other site or link in your control that may lead to these images. These were wrongfully obtained from a password protected website, and are not authorized for public distribution. I hope you understand, we’re a company that as a mission looks out for our shoppers and the public at large. To keep our prices as low as they are for merchandise of such high quality requires that we don’t advertise. We rely on mass publicity as our leading awareness builder. Having any images appear on the web prior to the launch of this collection June seriously jeopardizes agreements we have in place with global media outlets that have been promised first rights to show the merchandise. We absolutely want to work with you to provide information and/or images that are unique and special to you and your audience as a thank you for your cooperation. As a first step, we will grant permission to you to use the black/white image of Sarah Jessica Parker in a tshirt and jean jacket. But for now we are hoping you will cooperate with us and remove all the other images.

Here are Kathryn’s posts:
the review – thebudgetfashionista.com
the lawyer’s letter – thebudgetfashionista.com/lawyer’sletter

Please weigh in at The Budget Fashionista with your opinion on whether she should remove the photos or not.

– Lesley Scott Fashiontribes.com

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