Old Navy Reminds Us of Perils of Using Maps in T-shirt Decoration
Promo Marketing is proud to call Philadelphia home, meaning we have long-established knowledge of living in a city with many identifiable neighborhoods. We have yet to see a garment that botches our beloved areas via map depictions, or we might become apoplectic, such is our love for said sections. We cannot say the same for Chicago, though, which joins New Mexico and Boston as locations fated to have a geographically suspect T-shirt decoration try to represent their respective attractions and boundaries.
Through the Windy City mistake, Old Navy completes a triumvirate (here’s hoping there is no eventual quartet or worse) that includes J. Crew and Target as businesses that failed to nail a proper apparel homage to a U.S. destination. A Chicago denizen noticed the new miscue Nov. 24, finding that the San Francisco-based company had omitted some neighborhoods and had lumped others together with uncommon names. We appreciate what a stickler the resident, Zach Freeman, is when it comes to the city, as other inhabitants had been letting Old Navy get away with the gaffe for three years. Having transformed Chi-Town to Sigh Town, if you will, for Freeman, the clothing and accessories heavyweight has vowed to issue “a new design in the near future.”
May have found the worst Chicago map ever - on a shirt at Old Navy.
Wicker Park has its own listing but #2, #13 and #14 sum up the entire south and west sides... 🤔🤔🤔 pic.twitter.com/Vh7QuHtpbE
— Zach Freeman (@ZachRunsChicago) November 29, 2018
Since we opened this by mentioning Promo Marketing’s Philadelphia presence, we are fully aware of how particular people can be when referencing their neighborhoods and how livid they can become if, for example, a diehard Fishtown resident would have to endure the sting from the supposition that he/she lives in Kensington. We are the City that Loves You Back, but maybe that would change if someone were to misidentify our turfs.
We would not go so far as to say that Old Navy and its apparel peers should consult CNN or Fox News, both of whom have very intricate maps come election time, but we would suggest that companies consider carefully just how precise they are when using maps and other geographic flourishes in T-shirt decoration. To err is human, of course, but a blunder can be a bleak, not to mention costly, inspiration for consumer dissatisfaction. In Old Navy’s case, given the three-year existence of the Chicago shirt, that does not appear to be the case, but one never knows what would lead to widespread discontent.