Something that set me right off about Nike :mad:

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Original poster
Dec 27, 2002
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I just read this STORY (sorry, the story contains a few words that are censored at MR :eek: ), and it really bothers me that a company thinks they can just take someone elses work because they don't believe that the company has the financial resources to fight back in court. It shouldn't even get to court. Just don't copy other people's work.

Anyway, I emailed their corporate site asking them for an explanation.

Hello Nike Corp.,

"Minor Threat" is the name of a self-titled album released in 1984. Nike seems to have blatantly copied the album art from "Minor Threat" and used it in advertising for the "Major Threat" East Coast Skateboarding Tour in the US. You didn't ask for permission to use the image beforehand, and I'd like to know why not? Its probably because you know that the label probably doesn't make enough money to be able to fight back in court, and so you could just use the image without consequence. However, I'd like to hear a response if you have one.

I'd like to know what your company has to say about its actions. Your actions are that of a bully. I will never buy another Nike product again, and have already asked some of my friends not to do the same. While this may not seem like a big deal to you, as you sell to millions of people around the world, but you have lost a customer for life, and that is a lot of shoes and accessories. I regularly buy sports apparel and don't consider myself as one who simply buys any generic pair of runners on sale every 5 years. I do run regularly and partake in other sports on a regular basis.

I'd like to hear an explanation concerning your "Major Threat" advertisement if you have one. Until then, no more Nike products for me, my family, and several of my closest friends.


Sincerely,
Ian
Not sure if this was particularly good. I wrote it in 5 minutes and forgot to link to the story from which I read it.

Anyway, if you dislike what they did as much as I do, please send a message to Nike:

http://swoosh.custhelp.com/cgi-bin/swoosh.cfg/php/enduser/ask.php

When asked "SUBJECT/DETAIL," select "Nike - The Company" followed by "Advertising." I have made it very easy for you to complain, so please feel free to do so. ;)

Anyway, I really dislike Nike more and more. I pretty much stopped buying their products in the 1995-1997, but I did buy a Nike basketball recently. Damn! :mad: Personally, I don't think their products are worth the money. Too much of the money goes towards advertising. Their product takes a backseat. Too bad.

Anyway, thanks,
Ian :)
 

takao

macrumors 68040
Dec 25, 2003
3,825
432
Dornbirn (Austria)
Abstract said:
Anyway, I really dislike Nike more and more. I pretty much stopped buying their products in the 1995-1997, but I did buy a Nike basketball recently. Damn! :mad: Personally, I don't think their products are worth the money. Too much of the money goes towards advertising. Their product takes a backseat. Too bad.
i second that ... i bought a pair of Nike shoes _once_ after half a year 2x2 hours sports/week in school they were literally falling apart and i had to buy a new one

the reebook i had before for sports + street together lasted more like 2 1/2 years
my last pair of adidas lasted 2-3 years as well with daily use+sports untill i put them into the locker completly fine ... i still use them from time to time (soccer)
same for my nike football which didn't lasted very long

at the moment i'm wearing vans 1 year and i'm looking forward to at least 1 -2 years... still very sturdy
 

noaccess

macrumors 6502
Jun 11, 2005
445
1
I have a 5 month-old pair of pumas that are falling apart. And I mean original Pumas bought from the official Puma store here... Well, at least they don't do illegal advertising like Nike.
 

mad jew

Moderator emeritus
Apr 3, 2004
32,194
6
Adelaide, Australia
Man that's frustrating.

As for the letter, I think it comes across as though you're pretty angry here and also a little threatening. Whilst this is obviously fully justified, I think you'll get further with a letter that is a little less confrontational.

Save the harsh words for the second letter, once they've attempted to get themselves out of this mess so that you don't come across as attacking so much as defending.

Does that make sense? Sorry I've been studying all day and my brain's off with the fairies. :(
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Original poster
Dec 27, 2002
24,378
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^^Thanks for the tip. I usually wait until I'm calmer before I do anything, but sometimes I wait so long that I don't really feel compelled to do something about it, and so I end up doing nothing. :eek:

I guess that's the risk you take for writing letters like this while you're a bit angry.


And that Oxfam thing just makes me sad. I haven't been to that site in over 6 months. I hate how there's nothing we can do in situations like this, where a company shows no social responsibility. We can speak with our wallets, but much like Microsoft is to a Mac user, it sometimes doesn't seem to have much of an effect. They don't really miss us. Nike won't miss my money either.
 

CubaTBird

macrumors 68020
Apr 18, 2004
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remember LA Gear? whatever happend to those guys? i remember back in the early 90's they were the SHIZ... literally... with the light up sneakers and everything.... you had to be there... lol
 

Aeolius

macrumors 6502a
Jul 25, 2002
903
26
I stopped buying anything with Nike's logo on it, after they ran an "air-dry goat shoe" ad which belittled the disabled, in a hiking magazine.

" Fortunately, the Air Dri-Goat features a patented, goat-like out sole for increased traction, so you can taunt mortal injury without actually experiencing it. Right about now you're probably asking yourself, "How can a trail running shoe with an outer sole designed like a goat's hoof help me avoid compressing my spinal cord into a Slinky on the side of some unsuspecting conifer, thereby rendering me a a drooling, misshapen, non-extreme-trail-running husk of my former self, forced to roam the Earth in a motorized wheelchair with my name, embossed on one of those cute little license plates you get at carnivals or state fairs, fastened to the back?" "

Goodbye forever, Nike.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,641
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
Is Minor Threat or that album well enough known for this to be considered an homage or a rip-off, for that matter, by skaters? I'm not a skater...and I've never heard of the band. I guess that, if the album cover were something extremely famous, like the Andy Warhol banana cover for the Velvet Underground, then I could see something like this being a tribute / homage (or a satire if that were the intent) and it would seem like fair usage to me. But I don't think this cover is exactly so well known as Warhol's, and so it sounds pretty bad to me.

As far as *buying* Nike shoes...I don't merely because they do not make very good products for my sport (running). Very few runners run on Nike. I use Saucony, personally. And I don't really wear sports shoes except for sports...so the rest of my shoe money goes to Steve Madden and Aldo and so on.
 

Johnny Rico

macrumors 6502
Feb 17, 2005
267
0
CubaTBird said:
remember LA Gear? whatever happend to those guys? i remember back in the early 90's they were the SHIZ... literally... with the light up sneakers and everything.... you had to be there... lol
Hahaha I had some LA Gear Pump sneakers in probably 1990 because Reebok pumps were like $150 and the LA Gears were $35. Fell apart in about two weeks.
 

jelloshotsrule

macrumors G3
Feb 7, 2002
9,591
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serendipity
haha. when i saw the letter signed ian i thought ian mackaye had actually written it.. hah

anyways, i did a search for "nike major threat" and the first link i saw had a little bit more of the ad.... notice that the text on the right side is exactly like the font here.

also notice that the xxx over the double lines is exactly like the favicon in the previous link! and i'd guess that it's a symbol of minor threat or dischord or something.... and even if not, xxx... hmm. straightedge? minor threat? coincidence? what a joke...
 

Koodauw

macrumors 68040
Nov 17, 2003
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Madison
takao said:
i second that ... i bought a pair of Nike shoes _once_ after half a year 2x2 hours sports/week in school they were literally falling apart and i had to buy a new one
Well keep in mind different shoeshave different purposes, even within a category. (say running) Softer materials absorb more shock, but also wear down faster. Not saying Nike is the greatest, but its not as bad of a shoe as everyone makes out. Also, if your shoe wears out, call Nike. I sent a pair back and they gave me a credit for the full price. This was after about 1.5 yrs. That right keeps me coming back.
 

Apple Hobo

macrumors 6502a
Mar 19, 2004
795
0
A series of tubes
CubaTBird said:
remember LA Gear? whatever happend to those guys? i remember back in the early 90's they were the SHIZ... literally... with the light up sneakers and everything.... you had to be there... lol
Johnny Rico said:
Hahaha I had some LA Gear Pump sneakers in probably 1990 because Reebok pumps were like $150 and the LA Gears were $35. Fell apart in about two weeks.
I had to Google to check, but LA Gear is still around. I used to have the LA Lights a loooooooong time ago. :eek: I also had several pairs of the LA Gear "Regulator" pumps because the genuine Reebok Pumps were too expensive. I loved those things. Ahhh...the early 90s :D :D
 

mcarnes

macrumors 68000
Mar 14, 2004
1,929
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USA! USA!
All I know is Phil Knight donated $30 million to give our library a face lift at the U of O back in the early ninties. Nice library.
 

takao

macrumors 68040
Dec 25, 2003
3,825
432
Dornbirn (Austria)
Koodauw said:
Well keep in mind different shoeshave different purposes, even within a category. (say running) Softer materials absorb more shock, but also wear down faster. Not saying Nike is the greatest, but its not as bad of a shoe as everyone makes out. Also, if your shoe wears out, call Nike. I sent a pair back and they gave me a credit for the full price. This was after about 1.5 yrs. That right keeps me coming back.
i don't know ... a sports shoe(a basic one not some special ultra fragile soccer/running etc. shoe) who doesn't withstand perhaps 30 or 40 hours of light sport in school _inside_ of buildings, not even on grass or some rough terrain or something isn't something i want to shell out money ever again
sorry but even if it was an extremly "soft" shoe that's unbelievable bad i never had such a bad shoe from any other major brand by far

and that return-your-shoe thing doesn't exist over here (afaik)
 

Guitarius

macrumors 6502a
Jul 8, 2004
599
0
Louisiana
Apple Hobo said:
I had to Google to check, but LA Gear is still around. I used to have the LA Lights a loooooooong time ago. :eek: I also had several pairs of the LA Gear "Regulator" pumps because the genuine Reebok Pumps were too expensive. I loved those things. Ahhh...the early 90s :D :D
I had the Wal-Mart rip offs because we were poor. They wouldn't light up most of the time. You had to stomp real hard to get them to light. Man...being poor sucked.

It amazes me how all you have to do is make something silly like shoes that light up, and every kid has to have them. I bet they made a lot of money off parents who wanted to get their kids to shut up. Like pogs too. Remember pogs? What was the point of those God forsaken things?

Anyway. I wear Borns. The most comfortable shoe ever made. Get yourself a pair of these, your feet will love you forver. Not running shoes...but I don't run anyway, so it's all good.
 

iJon

macrumors 604
Feb 7, 2002
6,557
36
noaccess said:
I have a 5 month-old pair of pumas that are falling apart. And I mean original Pumas bought from the official Puma store here... Well, at least they don't do illegal advertising like Nike.
Yeah Puma's suck now. I bought two pairs after liking the looks, and still do. I think after flip flop season is over I will go back to a nice pair of KSwiss. Those were so comfortable and with a little super glue I could have kept wearing them for another year.

jon
 

skubish

macrumors 68030
Feb 2, 2005
2,669
0
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Probably management was unaware of this ripoff. Its not like they are up on the skateboarding/punk rock scene. Probably just signed off on some ad artist's work without knowing.
 

Abstract

macrumors Penryn
Original poster
Dec 27, 2002
24,378
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^^But the artwork was EXACTLY the same! Well, change the colour, and give the guy in the photo a pair of Nike's, and change it from "Minor Threat" to "Major Threat." Its still a copy, whether it was well-known work or not.

Again, the stealing was done probably because Nike knew that the label couldn't fight back with lawyers, and that they'd get away with it.

Anyway, no response so far, but its only Sunday in North America.

And I had Reebok Pumps, and they were fantastic. I don't understand why people kept bursting the bubble. I also saw a new pair of Reebok Pumps recently at a store for around $160 USD. They were pretty ugly. I actually think they were Shaq's shoe line. I guess he eventually did go back to Reebok. I think he was with Reebok at first, right?

Anyway, I'm also a runner, and I have a pair of Adidas. Not too bad. Very "airy" and breathable. Right now, I'd probably only buy New Balance, Asics, or Brooks. But my Adidas were a great price and they aren't too bad. :)

Nike isn't good for any sort of shoe. Too much of their budget is spent on advertisements (except in this case where they're just ripping off an idea :mad: ), and not enough money is spent on the shoe. :rolleyes:

PS: If anyone else wants to send a letter, feel free.

PPS: It sucks that Nike made mock the handicapp.
 

iGav

macrumors G3
Mar 9, 2002
9,025
1
Looks like Nike Skateboarding has pulled it... just leaking onto the design sites.



Nike Pulls Minor Threat Ad
Here's the apology in full:

June 27, 2005

To: Minor Threat, Dischord Records and fans of both

Re: Major Threat East Coast Tour Poster

Nike Skateboarding sincerely apologizes for the creation of a tour poster inspired by Minor Threat's album cover. Despite rumors being circulated, Wieden & Kennedy and Odopod had nothing to do with the creation of this tour poster and should not be held accountable. To set the record straight, Nike Skateboarding's "Major Threat" Tour poster was designed, executed and promoted by skateboarders, for skateboarders. All of Nike employees responsible for the creation of the tour flyer are fans of both Minor Threat and Dischord Records and have nothing but respect for both.

Minor Threat's music and iconographic album cover have been an inspiration to countless skateboarders since the album came out in 1984. And for members of the Nike Skateboarding staff, this is no different. Because of the album's strong imagery and because our East Coast tour ends in Washington, DC, we felt that it was a perfect fit. This was a poor judgment call and should not have been executed without consulting Minor Threat and Dischord Records.

We apologize for any problems this may have caused, and want to make very clear that we have no relationship with the members of Minor Threat, Dischord Records and they have not endorsed our products.

Every effort has been made to remove and dispose of all flyers (both print and digital). Again, Nike Skateboarding sincerely apologizes to Minor Threat and Dischord Records.

Sincerely,
Nike Skateboarding
 

Littleodie914

macrumors 68000
Jun 9, 2004
1,813
7
Rochester, NY
iGav said:
Looks like Nike Skateboarding has pulled it... just leaking onto the design sites.



Nike Pulls Minor Threat Ad
Here's the apology in full:

June 27, 2005

To: Minor Threat, Dischord Records and fans of both

Re: Major Threat East Coast Tour Poster

Nike Skateboarding sincerely apologizes for the creation of a tour poster inspired by Minor Threat's album cover. Despite rumors being circulated, Wieden & Kennedy and Odopod had nothing to do with the creation of this tour poster and should not be held accountable. To set the record straight, Nike Skateboarding's "Major Threat" Tour poster was designed, executed and promoted by skateboarders, for skateboarders. All of Nike employees responsible for the creation of the tour flyer are fans of both Minor Threat and Dischord Records and have nothing but respect for both.

Minor Threat's music and iconographic album cover have been an inspiration to countless skateboarders since the album came out in 1984. And for members of the Nike Skateboarding staff, this is no different. Because of the album's strong imagery and because our East Coast tour ends in Washington, DC, we felt that it was a perfect fit. This was a poor judgment call and should not have been executed without consulting Minor Threat and Dischord Records.

We apologize for any problems this may have caused, and want to make very clear that we have no relationship with the members of Minor Threat, Dischord Records and they have not endorsed our products.

Every effort has been made to remove and dispose of all flyers (both print and digital). Again, Nike Skateboarding sincerely apologizes to Minor Threat and Dischord Records.

Sincerely,
Nike Skateboarding
A step in the right direction, I guess.
 

jelloshotsrule

macrumors G3
Feb 7, 2002
9,591
3
serendipity
wow, very interesting. guess it makes sense... nike hires graphic design company (or has graphic design team) made up of some young skater/graphic designers... they make a not so subtle homage to the band that inspired many of their fellow skaters, not realizing possible negative implications...

sadly, i believe that nike is not as to blame as they usually are.. hah
 

mxpiazza

macrumors 6502a
Apr 22, 2003
597
0
cleveland, oh
i dont think nike is completely as hands-off and not as fault in this as they would like us to believe we are, i mean, everyone has a boss that OK's things... but it dosen't appear as if they were *trying* to be as negligent as it was originally made to look.

it would have been a really strong and effective campaign, were it not shut down... if nike wants to be effective in the skateboard world, they are going to need to be, or at least come off, much less corporate and white collar.

they have succeeded getting into the playgrounds and streets of the inner-cities, and imo, it's only a matter of time before they make an impact on the punk/skating underground as well.
 

jelloshotsrule

macrumors G3
Feb 7, 2002
9,591
3
serendipity
basically, i can see some exec ok'ing it without actually knowing of minor threat. still at fault and possibly able to be sued (in theory), but not nearly as bad as some big shots thinking "hey let's take that popular album cover art and make it into a campaign aimed at the very kids who'll recognize it!"...

it's a bit funny though that minor threat fans would be working for nike.... not very mackayesque. hah