— Gap (@Gap) August 4, 2014
Fashion’s body image issue is back in the news.
The Gap faced a barrage of criticism for the tweet above featuring what People magazine is calling an “ultra-thin model.” In response, people posted things like, “In what world do people look like this? Perhaps you could select models who represent regular gals & not a skeletor ghost” and “Looks like she needs a hamburger and some sunlight.”
The Gap immediately issued a statement via Edie Kissko, a company spokesperson: “Our intentions have always been to celebrate diversity in our marketing and champion people for who they are. Upon reflection, we understand the sensitivity surround this photograph. Customer feedback is important to us and we think this is a valuable conversation to learn from.”
The statement doesn’t really say anything; it’s not an apology and doesn’t dig too deeply to explain the photo. And that’s fine. In this case, the backlash was unreasonable.