H&M says controversial 'child labour' film is a Fake

Monday, 10 November 2014

Swedish value retailer has responded to the controversial short-film posted online by German blogger duo, David Kurt Karl Roth and Carl Jakob Haupt, which reportedly depicts children in factories making the Alexander Wang x H&M collection.

The film, which appeared last week online on the duo's blog Dandy Diary, was said to have been made in honor of H&M tenth designer collaboration launch, with the filmmakers adding: “Because we are just as amazingly excited as the rest of the apparent fashion world of the Alexander Wang x H&M collection which launches today, we have, as a sort of homage made a promotional video for the Wangmaster and the Swedish junk fashion retailer.”

In the short-film, named 'Alternative Advertising for Alexander Wang x H&M,' young boys can be seen working in the factory, sewing tags onto garment which carry the collaboration logo. At the end of the film, one boys comes forward and says: “I am honored to be a part of H&M's designer collaboration.”

Although the film was undoubtedly created to stir up controversy and doubt surrounding the origins of the H&M's designer collaboration, the authenticity of the film has been questioned several times. In an interview with journelles.de, Jakob Haupt says the duo paid the group of 20 children 500 euros for their performance, which casts further doubt on the film's credibility.

H&M prompted responded to the films claims of child labor and issued the following statement on their site: “The current video on Facebook is fake. The factory is not an H&M supplier. We are in contact with Facebook and have asked them to take it down immediately.”

“The Alexander Wang for H&M collection has been produced in China, Turkey and Italy only and not in India,” added a spokesperson who spoke to British Vogue. “The labels used for this collection are entirely black and not black on white as shown in the video. H&M does not accept child labour. Our child labour policy is based on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and the International Labour Organisation.”

The blogger duo took down the video on Friday and deleted the accompanying blog post. In a new blog entry, Jakob explains that H&M banned the video and that they were “very sorry that [their] promotional film was banned, deleted, exiled and driven out of town.”

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