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Mixed reactions to Abercrombie & Fitch's payoff to cast of 'Jersey Shore'

Published: Monday, September 5, 2011

Updated: Monday, September 5, 2011 19:09


Popular clothing brand Abercrombie & Fitch is making headlines after offering the cast of the hit television show "Jersey Shore" money to not wear clothes.

But we aren't talking nude photo shoots here, people—the cast will still have to find the right ensemble to show off their tans.  Abercrombie & Fitch specifically doesn't want their clothes seen on the popular MTV franchise cast members any longer.

The cast member who was the main concern was Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino, who has been spotted wearing the brand in many episodes, including the newest season's premiere.

In an article from The New York Times website written on August 17, Jordan Yospe, a lawyer who works with TV and movie product placement cases, said that if Abercrombie was serious about the cast not wearing the clothes, it would have taken the case to court rather than offering a hefty pay day.

Alysha Aldred, a freshman business major from St. George, said she sees this as a smart move on Abercrombie & Fitch's part.

"I could see why they decided on this compromise," Aldred said. "It makes good sense for Abercrombie not to have an affiliation with 'Jersey Shore.' They are trashier than trash itself."

All kidding aside, Aldred said the image Abercrombie & Fitch portrays is more of a lifestyle that appeals to teens. Since the cast is 21 and older and a large part of their lifestyle is the party scene, higher-ups of the company were worried that this lifestyle might rub off on their younger customers.

Aldred's sentiments were echoed by some of the top leaders in the company as well.

"This association is contrary to the aspirational nature of our brand, and may be distressing to many of our fans," the company said in a news release published on August 17.

But many think the company's plea to Sorrentino and other cast members was staged to increase back-to-school sales.

"Honestly, I think this is more of a publicity stunt than anything," Aldred said.  "But I do identify with this situation…trust me, if I saw someone off that show wearing an outfit I wouldn't be caught wearing it!"

Tyson Gossard, a sophomore nursing major from St. George, also agreed with Aldred.

"Why would you offer someone money to not wear the clothes you make?" Gossard said. "I think the company (that) planned this just did it to be one of those weird news stories that people talk about."

Gossard went on to say the plan obviously worked because people have been speculating about this news story since it happened.

Jake Adams, a senior nursing major from Preston, Idaho, said not only was he was surprised, but he was also confused by the news story.

"To me, it seems counteractive to offer someone money to not use your product," Adams said. "Plus, 'Jersey Shore' is one of the most popular shows on television right now. I'm sure that if the cast was seen wearing the clothes on the show that they would have made a lot more sales."

Adams isn't the only one who has noticed the popularity of "Jersey Shore." The season premiere scored the record of MTV's ratings, which happened to air right after this controversy. But unfortunately not everyone gets to benefit. Since the offer was extended to the cast, Abercrombie & Fitch's stock reportedly dropped about 9 percent, according to CNNMoney.

Kaylin Feller, a junior general education major from Centerville, said merchandising is important to the success of most TV Shows these days.

"'Jersey Shore' has dedicated fans who want to buy what the cast does," Feller said. "I wouldn't be surprised if this did affect company sales."

Feller also said the cast sets a lot of the trends, and are smart by banking on that. Cast members like Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi are making even more money on items that relate to their personalities. Fans of the show know her penchant for sunglasses and slippers,and now they can wear ones from her own brand.

And the surprise twist ending? Sorrentino is in the works creating his own clothing line now. The brand, called Dilligaf, (an acronym for Do I look like I give a...well, you get the idea) is expected to debut sometime this year.  Maybe Abercrombie & Fitch will eat their words soon enough.

Now that the cast has more money in their pockets, they also have one less thing to do on ‘GTL  (gym, tan and laundry) days. Maybe no Abercrombie & Fitch to wash will make for a lighter load. Seems they

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