Late last week, we caught wind that a Change.org petition pleading brands to stop working with photographer and "alleged sex offender" Richardson had been launched. Specifically targeting Vogue, H&M, Mango, Tom Ford, Supreme, and "all other brands" that have hired him in the past (or may in the future), the call to action used the photog's recent and past allegations of sexual abuse (and general creep-factor) as motivation.
"More awareness needs to be brought to light that Terry Richardson is negatively influencing media with his supposed exploit & abuse of certain models, mainstream degrading pornographic imagery, and inappropriate and unproffessional [sic] behavior," wrote the petition's founder Alice Ehrenfried of Southampton, UK. "His contribution to society has a bad impact as he is being exposed to the masses with the impression of being well received while there are potentially unethical practices not being shown."
So far, nearly 6,000 (and counting) supporters have signed the online petition–and now at least one big company has also stepped forward about the controversies surrounding Richardson's work. Saturday morning, H&M posted this tweet in response to one posted by Twitter user Kimberly Konnoth, which linked to a 2010 Jezebel piece and was directed at the Swedish brand 10 days earlier:
@kimkonnoth If these accusations are true, it's totally unacceptable to us. Currently we're not working with Terry Richardson.- H&M (@hm) October 19, 2013
This isn't the first time there's been speculation that H&M might cut ties with Richardson. Back in 2010, when accusations of his alleged misconduct first made headlines, reports surfaced that he could get dumped by the globally-powerful fast fashion brand. Of course, H&M actually went on to hire Richardson several times over, and as recently as its Doutzen Kroes-fronted summer campaign.
Still, we can't help but feel that H&M's recent public diss is a pretty big deal–but whether the sentiment to ditch Richardson will be shared by other brands remains to be seen. Could that Kardashian Kollection for Sears shoot be his final bow out of the commercial fashion world? At least he'll always have Miley...
We've reached out to Mango and Tom Ford and will report back if they have any comment.
Photo Credit: Terry Richardson, courtesy of Fashionista
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