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Post in Besides Beauty

Bite Beauty gaffe

Hasn't anyone noticed that Bite Beauty has named one of their Lush Fruit Lip Gloss's "Strangefruit"?  Isn't anyone else disturbed by this?

 

Strange Fruit, since no one seems to know, is the title of a famous jazz song sung by Billie Holliday (among many others).  The song is about the lynching of black men in the Jim Crow South, with their bodies being the 'strange fruit' that Southern trees bear.

 

Now I don't know anything about this company, maybe they are not American owned or based, so they don't realize the connotations.  I've told this to several people my own age(late 30's) and older and they were all appalled.  To date I have not seen any sign on Sephora (reviews, product Q&A, or here in BT) that anyone notices or cares. 

 

And that is even more disturbing than the name itself.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

Yes because failure to even google a potential product name is totally understandable.  Who has the time to type a term into google?  All the typing and the reading… what is this madness?!  Of course it's not their fault that they did literally nothing before releasing a product name - of course you're right.

 

Do you have any idea how absurd you sound?  Stop trying to fight with me and use your brain.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

I'm not fighting, I'm looking at the issue without an Americentric fog blurring it.  If I was naming a new product or color I'd be checking the trademark office long before and American idiom check on google.  

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If you are selling your product in two countries, you should take a second to make sure you're not offending, alienating, and disgusting a huge population of one of those countries.  Full stop.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

There are much larger companies with international product name gaffes going back decades and decades, I don't think it's fair to hold a small one like Bite to a standard that even the big guys can't manage.  

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

Yup, I agree. 

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If we don't keep all companies on their toes (including Bite) about making sure their product names aren't blatantly offensive/racist/sexist to the market in which they plan to sell their products, we're sending a message that it's OK, when it's not.  It's fair to hold ALL companies to that standard and consumers who are affected by those terms have ever right to demand a racist product be removed.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

i'm canadian and i think your comments are absurd!  we're not talking about individuals not knowing.  we're talking about a company not doing it's research!  if i was a company intending to sell a product i would make sure that the name wasn't something that would do the exact opposite of what i wanted.  These companies have lawyers and marketing people up the wazoo.  this isn't some little mom and pop store.  There is no excuse for this.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

You think Bite has lawyers and marketing staff and is some huge company, it's not.  Their website is little more than a blog and they have exactly one US sales outlet other than the Lip Lab.  I'd be amazed if they had more than 50-75 employees including production.  It's small, tiny, and mistakes happen.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

I agree with you here! Some Americans seem to think everyone should know everything about their country, yet they know nothing about most others, like Canada for example. If an American company named a product something like "Residential School" no one would bat an eye. I'm sure most Americans have no idea what residential schools were, just like Canadians likely don't know what Strangefruit is.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

If some company ,American or not, named a lip product "residential school" I would have a problem with it.  To me it means a residential treatment facility  for children or adults with addictions or severe mental illnesses. So yeah, I would bat an eye and be as equally pissed as a lippy named strangefruit or celebutard. A company that pulls that crap has no sense of right and wrong.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

Here in Canada, residential schools were basically boarding schools for Aboriginal children, but the purpose of them was to assimilate them into white culture. They were completely cut off from their families and were abused physically, emotionally, and sexually, and were usually taken from their families by force. Also, I was using "residential school" as an example because it's the worst thing that's ever occurred in Canada to my knowledge.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

Same thing here in the US happened in Minnesoata. At least the TRC issued reparations for the atrocities committed in Canada, but in the US  nada. In fact, in the US they turned over the so called "schools" to the Catholic Church where more abuses were committed. In addition, they never looked for the bodies of those Native American children that died from the malfeasance of those in charge. 

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

I had no idea they were in the US too. I guess you're one of the few Americans that do know about them!

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

You're right because a residential school here in the US usually refers to a boarding/prep school.

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Usually, but not necessarily. I can see it in the North, but not here in the South where facilities where kids who are handicapped are routinely placed in residential schools.

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This seems more and more to be a Southern issue because as I said earlier I never heard Strange Fruit outside of a music context nor used in conversation other than as a LGBT reference.

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I'm from Connecticut.  In my 7th grade history class all of it was focused on black history, Jim Crow laws, and an in-depth examination into the very dark times in our country as a whole regarding race relations.  We had to research lynchings, listen to Billie Holiday sing that chillingly beautiful desolate song.  We studied how people of color had been wronged…not just wronged but brutalized, killed, tortured, and by white Americans who felt black people could not and would never be American people - or people at all.

 

I feel fortunate to have learned it at an early age.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

That's not the same as a term being used as an idiom for lynchings which is what people are claiming. 

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

I feel the same way. Everyone deserves to know about the horrible things your country did in the past so it will never happen again.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

Um because if you're a cosmetics company that sells internationally you should probably do the barest of preliminary research to make sure you're not using an insanely offensive racist term for your products?

 

And my comment was actually referring to the number of people who are showing up in the thread saying that they are American and had no idea what the term meant.  I was expressing my disappointment that American schools are apparently so bad at teaching American history that many people had no idea what the term meant (not condemning or judging the individuals in this thread for not knowing it).

 

In the words of my lord and savior Latrice Royale, good god girl, get a grip.  Stop trying to throw shade at me without even reading my words, dang.

Re: Bite Beauty gaffe

I can only speak about the school I went to, but we only really learned about the American history that was relevant to Canada. There was very, very little about African American history in our curriculum. Like we learned about Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks and slaves fleeing to Nova Scotia (again only learning things that involved Canada), but that was really it. In my classes anyways, I obviously can't speak to what other people in Canadian classes learned. 

 

This is why I do believe Bite may be ignorant to this. I truly hope they change it

10 Replies