Monday, April 19, 2021

Blogger Alissa Ashley Slams Oh Polly Brand for ‘Segregating’ Curvy/Non-White Models

Alissa Ashley

*Blogger Alissa Ashley is being praise by fashionistas across social media for calling out online retailer Oh Polly for segregating its plus-size and non-white models from its main page.

According to Revelist, segregation in the name of inclusion is a common strategy with online retailers — from Forever 21 to Fashion Nova to Boohoo.

Ashley took to Twitter to slam Oh Polly for having a separate Instagram account for plus-size and darker-skinned folks.

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“What in the segregation is this. What makes these women not suitable for your main page @ohpolly? Ohpollyinclusive?? Who approved this?” she asked on Twitter.

The YouTuber shared a screenshot of both Oh Polly social media accounts. The main page featured only slim, white and/or fair-skinned models, while the “inclusion” page featured darker and fully models.

“Like, imagine calling yourselves inclusive [and] not wanting to post women that don’t fit your ‘aesthetic’ on your brand page lmao,” the YouTuber quipped. 

Many on Twitter joined the conversation… asking Oh Polly to make it make sense.

“The fact that they put in their inclusive bio ‘0% tolerance. 100% inclusive.’ But had to make a whole separate page to include certain people,” wrote one critic on Twitter.

“How and why did they think this is OK? By now, I would think brands know better but I guess I’m just too naive lol,” wrote another user.

The brand has responded to the controversy and criticism, issuing an apology to Buzzfeed.

“Oh Polly made a serious error of judgement [sic] for which we take full responsibility and sincerely apologise [sic],” the brand told the publication. “We established a new page with the specific aim of allowing our customers to discuss a wider range of issues… We have a close relationship with our customers around the world and always value their feedback. Improving diversity remains an absolute priority for us across all of our channels. We promise to continue listening to everyone in the Oh Polly community and, most importantly, learn from this mistake.”

Via Buzzfeed:

Four days and 29 Instagram posts after the Buzzfeed article went up, the brand hasn’t posted a single plus-size person on its page. It also posts about the same number of models of color as it did previously. If that doesn’t confirm that this fast-fashion retailer has no interest in truly promoting and including all people, then I don’t know what will.
oh polly

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is a screenwriter and freelance reporter from Chicago -- currently living in Los Angeles and covering A-list entertainment for various outlets, including Emmys.com. She has worked for: Miramax, MTV & VH1, The Jim Henson Company, Hallmark Channel, Paramount Pictures, and for iconic indie film producer Roger Corman.

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