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BREAKING: Rapper/Sneaker Partnerships Are Just ‘Publicity Stunts’

shutterstock_165567980Don’t tell Kanye or his circa-2005 shirt/coat/glasses combo, but TIME is onto his little sneaker game. In a post yesterday, the magazine recognized that the longstanding trend of rappers partnering with shoe brands is nothing but an old-school publicity stunt.

Once you recover from your shock, consider that:

“…celebrity sneakers are almost always created in limited runs…”

Which, in turn:

“…makes these shoes seem desperately sought after and generates free press…”

This despite the fact that the brands don’t actually make any real money on them. It’s all about creating a sense of exclusivity by exploiting the dangerously co-dependent relationships between men and their shoe closets, right? Yes, but Mr. Kardashian isn’t having any of it: he opted out of his Nike contract after going on a typical tirade about wanting his shoes to be the biggest shoes in the history of big shoes. For the record, though, he’s still cool with Drake. Whew.

To clarify: these partnerships are incredibly successful publicity stunts except when applied to the guy on the right, whose primary goal in life seems to be avoiding anything that even vaguely resembles good press.

Good to know!

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