Is Primark labelgate a guerilla campaign stunt?

26 June 2014

primark logo Primark has been in the news after someone found a label which had a cry for help sewn into it. Lots of people suddenly started having a 'good think' about whether or not they were going to shop at Primark anymore, without really considering that Primark probably has the same practices as premium brands, but no-one goes on about that.

And now, a second message has appeared in some Primark clothes at their Swansea store, reading 'Degrading sweatshop conditions'.

The first item of clothing was found in the same store in Wales too, saying: 'Forced to work exhausting hours'.

The two girls who bought the clothes with these 'cries for help' in them have said that they don't know each other, but have both said to the press that they won't be wearing anything from Primark again. They're concerned about the conditions in the factories that make the clothes (but presumably less bothered about the conditions workers endure who make their phones, which they almost certainly have).

From the off, this whole thing looked like a campaign by someone. Initial reports saw the press boo-hooing, imagining that some poor worker had sewn in a plea to have their conditions looked at, but anyone who knows anything about these factories will tell you that no-one there has the time to doing political gestures and the like.

A Primark spokesperson has described these labels as ‘strange’ and the customers have been asked to give them back the items so they can investigate further.

They added: "We are investigating the origins of an additional label which has been found in one of our dresses and whether there are issues which need to be looked into."


This whole thing stinks of a guerilla campaign to highlight the plight of factory workers and it is working. Everyone's talking about it, in fairness.

However, if it is, whoever did has dropped a clanger - similar messages appearing in the same store? That's not likely. They should've caught a train somewhere and spread it out for authenticity. Alas, here we are, with the whole thing looking fishy and, worse still for the campaigners - if people get suspicious or think those behind it are hippies, they'll soon ignore all this and think "sod those idiots" and shop at Primark even more.

TOPICS:   High Street News


  • DragonChris
    I can't wait for it to come out that the girls sewed the labels themselves and are sued for slander by Primark.
  • John K.
    I doubt it would have been sewn in by a third-world sweatshop worker. Where would they have been to school to learn how to write in English?
  • Big M.
    Time till the truth comes out..... 2 days.
  • james
    here is another one no one has noticed about so there are 3 cases now,this one is found in belfast
  • Bob B.
    I'm sure Primark will find the culprit and sack them and their family and their families friends.......
  • Samantha
    It's obviously a stunt, and it's annoying because whether you spend £5 or £50 on a pair of jeans, they're made in the same sweatshops with the same awful conditions. So if you really care then buy the £5 jeans and donate the £45 to charities aimed at improving conditions in overseas factories. It would be nice if Primark let you make a donation to such a charity at POS, like tipping in a restaurant.
  • News P.
    [...] labelgate looks like a stunt to us bitterwallet/sweatshop Farmer’s markets – they might be ripping you off bitterwallet/market Want to see 28 [...]
  • Slacker
    It's a stunt, for sure, but it's a good one!

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