DKNY Update: When the Court of Public Opinion Becomes the Bully

Since DKNY’s response to the almost-crisis situation they beautifully handled last week, they’ve been faced with an outcry of anger, disappointment and backlash for not donating the full 100K to the YMCA, as originally requested by Humans of New York. Here is just a small taste of what DKNY is experiencing on their Facebook page:

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So what should DKNY do?

Honestly, it depends on them. If they want to match the donation and calm the cries, then they could, though this would only lead to more banter about how they only did it because everyone made them. The fact of the matter is, DKNY handled the initial mistake beautifully. They immediately corrected the error, issued an apology, complimented the photographer and decided to make a donation of 25K to the YMCA. The initial request for a donation of 100K was a little extreme, in my opinion, and one would have hoped that the brand would have been praised for their quick response and rectification of the situation AND for their generous donation. Unfortunately, such was not the case.

Related Resource from B2CWebcast: PR Hacking: How Ideas Spread And What Marketers Need to Know

Though I talk often of the “court of public opinion” and as it’s important to consider this court prior to and during any crisis response/management, brands can also not succumb to bullying when they’ve done everything in their power to sincerely right a wrong. In my opinion, DKNY is doing right by standing by their initial response and decision.

Let’s not forget that the positive end to this entire situation remains that the YMCA has received $100,000 in donations and that Humans of New York were not only righted for the wrong done, but have also gained exponentially in brand-awareness.

Discuss This Article

Comments: 1

  • Are you kidding?? Have you any idea how big HONY’s fan base is? If Brandon had taken the case to court he would’ve made much more out of it and you know it. $25,000 is supposed to be generous? Please. They did not ‘immediately’ correct the error, they waited hours before they responded, and even when they did they were as condescending as they can be. Making out as though Brandon simply declined their initial offer rather than being honest about their unwillingness to match his price just shows you their true mindset. They knew exactly what they were doing, putting the pictures up in Bangkok hoping word wouldn’t get round. Their conduct has been disgraceful, as is this article. The ‘positive end’ to the situation came only because Brandon urged his fans to donate, and the fact that his fans failed to do what DNKY are refusing to do is an even bigger disgrace. You shame yourself by defending them.

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