Role Models


Caught on the front page of a British tabloid snorting cocaine? No problem! Captured in a pornographic video widely available on the Internet? Not to worry! Exposed your surgically-enhanced breast to the paparazzi at P. Diddy’s birthday bash? We still love and want you!

Maybe I’m out of touch, but my PR instincts tell me that these are not the ideal candidates to rep a company’s consumer product or service.

When Europe’s largest retailer H&M woke up one morning to find its new poster child Kate Moss on the cover of the UK’s Daily Mirror in a coke-ingesting photo-op, it decided that Ms. Moss, whose marriage to a strung-out junkie made headlines in the last year, deserved a second chance. The tide of public opinion, however, spilled over the levee of good taste, prompting H&M to recant.

“If someone is going to be the face of H&M,” the spokeswoman, Jennifer Uglialoro, said, “it is important they be healthy, wholesome and sound.”