Cheap fashion has hit a new low.
We already know that getting that flimsy asymmetrical tunic to your closet comes at a heavier cost to water, CO2, and human rights than its price tag reflects. But now, when you order some cheap clothing online, you might be sent a different item than the one you thought you paid for.
A recent Buzzfeed exposé details the scam: Chinese-based retailers snatch images from the web and use them to market women’s clothing on Facebook, advertising dirt cheap prices. Then, after a poor, unwitting soul orders one of these items, the company ships them something that only vaguely resembles the product in the image:
For obvious reasons, we’re guessing the person who ordered this chic gray frock was not pleased to be sent a mauve trash bag with sleeves instead.
Buzzfeed points out that this ruse — perpetrated by a host of clothing companies that go by names like Zaful, RoseGal, and DressLily — has churned up tens of thousands of complaints over the past year. According to Buzzfeed analysis, at least eight of these companies are affiliated with a single Chinese clothing company, ShenZhen Global Egrow E-Commerce Co., which made more than $200 million in sales in 2014 and is chaired by multi-millionaire Yang Jianxin.
As always, be careful on Facebook, folks. This scam is a cruel trick, but then again, the whole fast fashion industry is playing a cruel trick on us — and the planet. Watch us explain why: