Foschini withdraws sexist T-shirts

2011-10-26 12:25

Cape Town - The Foschini Group has withdrawn three T-shirts from their stores because they are deemed sexist, the Cape Times newspaper reported on Wednesday.

The T-shirts were meant to be tongue-in-cheek, but had caused offence to some customers, communications manager Kathryn Sakalis told the newspaper.

"We’ve got hundreds of Ts with different slogans. Those withdrawn are three we felt crossed the line between humorous and offensive," she said.

The T-shirts - all for men - had slogans such as “how to get laid” and “I put the STD in STUD, all I need is U”.

Social networking storm

The removal of the T-shirts also comes after FeministsSA asked its followers to boycott all Foschini stores until all the offensive sweaters had been removed.

The T-shirts were being sold at Markhams and Sports Scene shops.

Sakalis did not know how many had been manufactured, but said the withdrawal was immediate.

The withdrawal followed complaints from customers who thought the wording was offensive to women. The T-shirts also caused a buzz on social networking sites such as Twitter.

"We have heard what the community said and will not hesitate to act immediately and take quick action," she said.

In a message posted on the Hayes Happenings website, Taryn Hayes thanked the group for its decision.

"It would have been easy for the group to choose to ignore the moral high ground," Hayes said.

"Instead you have chosen to respect the public, your customers and the country by choosing to take a financial hit in removing these T-shirts."

  • Kevin - 2011-10-26 12:31


      werner.smidt - 2011-10-26 12:44 Of course .. only go there if you have a sense of humour.

      Donald - 2011-10-26 12:55

      maybe i should open up a sense of humour one sense of humour of humour & get a free foschini t-shirt!! people need 2 stop whinning now...

      John - 2011-10-26 13:47

      no sense of humour

      Shadoz - 2011-10-26 13:48


      danalexsmith - 2011-10-26 14:19

      the shirts aren't sexist, they're stupid.

      Peter - 2011-10-26 14:23

      Oh God, here we go again. Nanny state with no sense of humour. We should all just crawl into a hole lest we piss some group or other off.

      Merven - 2011-10-27 08:07

      And what if a gay wears these shirts, is it still sexist?

      duncan.cramer - 2011-10-27 08:25 - maybe these guys should sell those shirts

      Ax - 2011-10-27 13:13

      Nothing to do with a nanny state, learn how to read properly before blaming in the wrong direction. Customers complained, and like any normal company who listens to their customers, they acted on the complaint. On the issue, the slogan are really dumb and stupid mostly, like the "i put STD.." i mean what the hell, like sexually transmitted disease? and that's suppose to attract women on the dance floor and how to get laid? seems so cheap and vulgar not even funny

      Mandy - 2011-10-27 15:37

      you actually spell it RIDICULOUS. But I agree with you.

  • Brent - 2011-10-26 12:44


      Abe - 2011-10-27 17:25

      These feminazis will take offense to anything, so why bother being PC about it? I think they should go iron some shirts instead of worrying about what's on them :)

  • Ross - 2011-10-26 13:00

    Maybe we should boycott Markhams untill they put them back. Don't ppl have a sense of humour?

      Hans - 2011-10-27 11:52

      I wonder how many of these so called righteous people actually shop at Foschini or Markhams?

  • Rob - 2011-10-26 13:10

    Since when was comedy immoral? Those slogans are funny as hell.

      Grant - 2011-10-26 17:50

      Exactly!! I mean, if I wore a t-shirt that said "I support Julius Malema", it should just make people laugh, right!? :)

      Steve - 2011-10-27 07:02

      Eh Grant.... thats going a little too far! THATS offensive!

  • Daryn - 2011-10-26 13:10

    We clearly live in a society where people are no longer able to laugh at themselves. Hot on the heels of the Axe ad being dropped because falling angels will offend some people. It's all laughable really

      Lyle - 2011-10-26 14:20

      Those Axe adds have not been dropped in the UK...we think they are very funny.

  • Steven - 2011-10-26 13:17


  • Louise - 2011-10-26 13:17

    Seriously, have we all lost the plot and our sense of humour with it!

  • philip.spies - 2011-10-26 13:17

    Who said these T-Shirts are sexist? Are the feminists now saying that gay guys aren't allowed to wear them?

  • Sattva - 2011-10-26 13:18

    what a load of crock

  • fanie.devilliers - 2011-10-26 13:20

    Political correctness taken too far.

      Heinrich - 2011-10-26 20:03

      Foschini Wam!

  • gaeleen - 2011-10-26 13:33

    really stupid I am sure the T-shirt aorunf=d 30 years ago had quite similar slogans on them and they did not cause an uproar

  • wynandjsmit - 2011-10-26 13:35

    Ag siestog, foeitog, f*k!!

  • Rudzani - 2011-10-26 13:35

    expression of words is someone`s rights but just because one man/woman feel and need to test his/her controlling habit to the others just wake-up and decide to boycott someone expression of words and that i think is to show that freedom of speech is based on the loud-mouthed leaders of certain groups without looking on the other point of totally wrong to just decide to cut other on how one must live. FeministsSA dont represent all people and dont give them the right.some like and it is freedom of speech .stop the crying foul all the time when someone shows the expression it is a matter of choice to make you dont like it then is tough and that makes you different from me and that is life . LIFE IS FREE PLEASE DONT PLAY GOD TO OTHER PEOPLE BECAUSE THAT WILL HAUNT YOU ON YOUR LAST BREATH AND APOLOGIZING WONT BE ACCEPTED AS YOU CHOOSE TO RUN OTHERS LIFE LIKE MONOPOLY.CHEERS

      simone.coetzer - 2011-10-26 15:53

      punctuation much?

      SimnikiweNtingi - 2011-10-26 18:44

      "CHEERS"...Lol that killed me...

  • DuToitCoetzee - 2011-10-26 13:36

    Maybe the "how to get laid", but the others is fine. I agree with Mashadi. It will make it easier to recognize "certain" people. I will not wear a T-shirt like that, but I do not have a problem with the wording of most. Foshini, maybe this happens when you do bulk purchases from China and do not go thoroughly through all the T-shirts. Please do not tell me differently. I know some of your buyers. Except for the 1st one, that will not fit with the Markhams image, I can't see wrong with the others.

  • Cheryl - 2011-10-26 13:51

    I have seen these t-shirts and as a woman touching 50 I found them rather amusing. My daughter aged 23 read them all and laughed (you should see what t-shirts she wears) If you dont like them dont read them or buy them. Really people get a life.

      Marion - 2011-10-26 14:20

      Hear Hear Cheryl.

      Mashadi - 2011-10-26 15:18

      you are so right, why didn't i think of covering my eyes every time i see a printed T-shirt, just in case i find it is offensive? I personally think one's real awareness about gender issues determines whether they find those T-Shirts funny or not... i don't. I am a woman, who has experienced sexism so I don't find it funny when such behaviour is glorified and to a large extent normalised.

      Marion - 2011-10-26 17:08

      We've all experienced sexism - both men and women - and it only has the power we give it. I don't give it power and I give as good as I get. People have the right to freedom of expression and if we start complaining about things like this it will be 5 ticks and the anti religious lobby will start objecting to religious symbols and slogans being shoved in their faces. What is the difference?

      Delani - 2011-10-27 09:47

      I also failed to see exactly how I am suppose to be offended by any of those slogans - they're actually quite funny. So you're daugher in her 20's are okay with it, me in my 30's are fine, you in your 50's are not offended - can a 40 something please let us know if it offended you?

      Theresa - 2011-10-27 10:07

      @Delani I'm in my 40' offence taken.I think some people aren't getting enough attention at home.They've got no sense of humour!

      Ax - 2011-10-27 13:23

      maybe your eyes arent so good anymore cheryl, but natural instinct when someone walks with a big writing on his clothes makes you automatically read the message. And if it's a stupid message it "hurts my eyes" Since you dont see what's wrong with them, it's not surprising your offspring doesnt either, the apple never fall far from the tree. But i guess you dont mind the STD one, even if it affects your daughter, probably laughing matter for you (double meaning here, Sexually transmitted disease)

  • britz.rudi - 2011-10-26 13:57

    LOL!!! FeministsSA is a JOKE.

      Dean - 2011-10-26 23:30

      Q: How many feminists does it take to change a lightbulb? A: It's a trick question... Feminists have never managed to change ANYTHING! :D

  • Nosiphom - 2011-10-26 13:59

    If it hurts you, don't buy it but why force others to boycott. So where is this country going, we can't even laugh at ourselves !

  • Jerolan - 2011-10-26 14:04

    Come on guys. This was never meant to be offensive. No sense of humour When we have lost our ability to laugh, we have lost the ability to live.

  • Marion - 2011-10-26 14:11

    FeministSA you do not speak for me when you find these t-shirts offensive. You want to object to something offensive and demeaning to women, object to pornography on free tv channels. That would be something worth objecting to. The only one I found to be even remotely thumbs down is: “I put the STD in STUD, all I need is U”. and the reason for that is because STD is the acronym for Sexually Transmitted Disease. "It would have been easy for the group to choose to ignore the moral high ground," Hayes said. "Instead you have chosen to respect the public, your customers and the country by choosing to take a financial hit in removing these T-shirts." *pukes*

      cheyna.stewart - 2011-10-27 08:06

      your right Marion if anything these shirts help women because if i ever saw a guy wearing a shirt like that id know he was an egotistical chop and stay far away.

      Ax - 2011-10-27 13:43

      There is pornography on free tv channels??? Really? NO way, when? which channel? So let's see, no trouble about a guy saying to women (maybe your daughter) let's get laid and doing what you can imagine, that's fine, super, BUT showing that on TV big no no.... So basically you have no issue if your daughter just serves as a receptacle, that's your choice i guess. bit hypocritical all that...

  • mishkaness - 2011-10-26 14:16

    *Facepalm* What a joke! Would the T-shirts still be sexist if they were made in female's sizes too? There is nothing directly derogatory to women there, it's just about sex, in general. Perhaps if those at FeministsSA got real jobs and spent less time shopping they'd have a better time getting their point across.

  • Bryan - 2011-10-26 14:17

    Some people will bitch about the most trivial crap..! If you dont like the shirt then dont buy one FFS!!!

  • richard.pols1 - 2011-10-26 14:21

    Pathetic...since when do you buckle to a bunch of whinging old feminists... If the tables were turned, as they often are, you would not get a single man crying about it? Think of how many ads (read car insurance) are sexist toward we take offense? No we just laugh it off and take it in our stride....because we see the humour in it all...

  • Albertus - 2011-10-26 14:23

    I do not agree with the Fems, they make me flippen mad !! Slut walk ?? really what the f?? kids read this and you are saying if you want to look like a slut it is fine... No you want to tell clothing stores what goes and what not!! do us all a fav en get laid and then get over yourself !! i am sick of bird people, tree people, shark people and now you people !! live and let live !! any woman that thinks that this is a mans world, have clearly not dicovered her female part and also have no idea how to use them, all men and myself are simple humans, we will fall for any crap you have to offer... so whom do you think sets the trends ?? Big ugly losers with nothing better to do... they normally become the pain in th ass we all dislaik, just becuase we all have a say in the new SA does not meen that everything you/we say is worth listing too. Get a life ladies :)

      Jaime - 2011-10-26 16:46

      Aww did someone have a bad experience with a woman in the past? Get over it maybe?

  • myst.rackermann - 2011-10-26 14:27

    I actually find the t-shirts hilarious. I love statement t-shirts and only those with a sense of humour tend to get the joke!

  • Marion - 2011-10-26 14:28

    FeministsSa website has 81 followers and according to it 150 people like it on facebook. Yet they think they speak for the SA female. I can picture each and every one of those approx. 150 people phoning again and again to complain about this non event. Foschini, ask your customers what they think before you succumb to the demands of such a negligible minority group. You might be surprised at the results.

      DuToitCoetzee - 2011-10-26 14:40

      It is easy to convince a group like Foschini. If he can get your full membership to phone when you are a small group the stores will see it as a problem. They work on a system. If 100 people phone in they will think 10 000 or more have a problem with the print. Just the chair"person"( hie, hie hie!) identify him/her self as if he/she speaks for the group and all the others phone in as individuals. If ask if you part of a group you just say no. You can try it. It works......except with government. :)

      Bryan - 2011-10-26 14:43

      Bet they organize a membershipship drive and stop pissing on my battery..!! Thanks for the info Marion:-)

  • Ruan - 2011-10-26 14:32 t-shirt says....." LOCAL IS LEKKER" !!

  • rheinhardt.peens - 2011-10-26 14:33

    Dont these people have a life...really, they are a waste of space, do something productive!!B.i.t.c.h.i.n.g about T-Shirts!!! We have alot more to worry about!!!

  • Heidi - 2011-10-26 14:36

    Ai surely there are more important things in life! Sexist feminist chauvinist who the crap cares!

  • myst.rackermann - 2011-10-26 14:43

    I think my "Do I Make You Look Fat?" t-shirt is even more offensive... I could be wrong.

  • Peter - 2011-10-26 14:49

    “I put the STD in STUD, all I need is U” I'm not sure I would want a shirt advertising my STD status. Silly people.

  • gaff.harrison - 2011-10-26 14:52

    Don't you just hate awkward moments, like at the feminist's picnic when they suddenly realise that that NOBODY made the sandwiches?

      werner.smidt - 2011-10-26 16:14

      Oh my . . ROFL . . please someone move this to the top! *salutes*

      Jaime - 2011-10-26 16:50

      Oh, a sammich joke. Your comment is both new and original sir.

      siyanyezi - 2011-10-26 17:29


  • Michelle - 2011-10-26 14:52

    how silly - people need to lighten up!!

  • branden.hart - 2011-10-26 14:53

    ARRGGHH Dictated to by a Home School Family Blog Site.

      Marion - 2011-10-26 15:15

      I had actually missed out on that Hayes Happenings and they don't speak for me either... 'moral high ground'... roflmfao

  • Kashiefah - 2011-10-26 14:55

    People have no sense of humour ai.....

  • Andre - 2011-10-26 15:15

    It crosses the line and is offensive to normal, descend and principled people. The morals of this society .......!

      NrGx - 2011-10-26 15:29

      O please --- you might as well walk around with a blindfold on if you that easily offended. Never turn on your TV, and god forbid you surf the net.

      Bryan - 2011-10-26 16:07

      Boo hoo bru..!!

      Mandy - 2011-10-27 16:09

      Andre. where did you descend from ???? some DECENT place no doubt. Honestly if you are going to take the time to comment at least spell the words correctly !! Anyway. this is the best laugh of the day - where the heck does feminist come into the equation anyway. The T's are funny. Rude, tasteless. yes. But FUNNY. If it offends the small minded people in our society well so be it. I hope Edgars sells a few that really blow your brains!!

  • Leewyn - 2011-10-26 15:24

    What I find fascinating is that these feminist groups just assume that these slogans are aimed to belittle females - what about gay men who wear these t-shirts? Just putting the idea out there...

  • margaret.mead1 - 2011-10-26 15:28

    This is nothing to do with a sense of humour,and lots to do with making light of something as serious as an STD, and deliberately offending a certain section of society.Personally, as a woman I find it offensive, and I applaud Foschini for taking action. One of the things that really interests me is how people get dressed in the morning in a T-shirt which has a slogan on it, and after an hour or so they obviously completely forget what their shirt 'says', and are really surprised when somebody responds to the statement they are wearing on their chest or back.It's an interesting phenomenon.

      Jackie - 2011-10-26 16:13

      Margaret, the STD which you refer to means STANDARD, nothing what so ever to do with Sexually Trasmitted Diseases. Well in my universe anyway.

      Rohin - 2011-10-26 21:28

      On first reading the article, I too first thought of STD as sexually transmitted disease. I don't see the sexist angle FeministSA are eluding to. Assuming that Sexually Transmitted Disease is what comes to mind, who would want to wear that anyway - and any business worth its salt would realise it's a bad seller and remove it. If we're going to go around removing everything that offends someone, we're going to be left in a very vanilla world, and not even a vanilla pod one at that, but a dodgy synthetic vanilla essence one.

      Penny - 2011-10-27 08:06

      Pity one can't buy brains. Jackie, your universe is way, way out there if you think that the STD in the t-shirt joke stands for "standard". You're a hoot all on your own!

      Mandy - 2011-10-27 16:17

      So Margaret, does that mean, if you applaud Foschini for their actions, you have the clap???

  • Janet - 2011-10-26 15:29

    Oh FFS.....sometimes 'feminists' can embarrass real women no end!

  • Pulverturm - 2011-10-26 15:46

    Awesome, where can I get one?

  • Leendert - 2011-10-26 15:47

    Well, you'd have to be a complete dork anyway to want to wear that. What exactly is so funny about them?

  • Michele - 2011-10-26 16:00

    Oh for heavens sake! If you are so profoundly offended by what is written on a T-shirt - DON'T BUY IT! This absolutely ridiculous, and tantamount to infringement of one of the most basic principles of our Constitution - freedom of speech. If a person wishes to buy and wear a T-shirt with a slogan on it, no matter how stupid, it is their right to do so. @Werner Smidt - is one of the best websites of all time! Have shopped online there more than once, and have quite a respectable collection of offensive T-shirts!

  • Cheryl - 2011-10-26 16:01

    Get a life...and what are you doing in the mens section. I can b a bit of a feminist and I stand up for womens rights but the tshirst are dumb not sexist...hahahaha

  • psteyn - 2011-10-26 16:05

    Whats worse than a chauvinistic male pig? ...A woman that doesn't do as she is told.

  • Michele - 2011-10-26 16:09

    @Mashadi - Oh poor you! Subject to sexism, were you? It is highly probable that almost every woman on the planet at some point in her life has been subject to sexism in one form or another. Doesn't mean that we must all have an instant and complete sense of humour failure. You need to lighten up.

  • homemissionary - 2011-10-26 16:27

    The problem with getting someone to stop printing something is that these same people can get ME to stop writing or printing what I want to write/print.I'm a Christian, I believe those T-shirts are offensive.But if I stop YOU from saying what you want to say,then you have the same right to stop me from saying what I want to say.I'd rather move to a place where I won't be offended, rather than trying to stop it this way.Somewhere where there are loads of farms and no TV etc.

  • Hermann - 2011-10-26 16:59

    We have a population of over 40 million. I wonder what percentage complained. The answer should show up the absurdness. Personally I would not have bought one as it is not my taste.

  • Roelof.00 - 2011-10-26 17:25

    I want a shirt like that and will wear it bold and proud. F the people, we are the people.

      Christian - 2011-10-26 17:29

      Until the joke gets old, then you'll throw it away

  • Eric - 2011-10-26 17:34

    I dont get this, if u cant understand the humour then why would u buy the T-shirts?? This is crazy!!

  • kiets - 2011-10-26 17:53

    someone had a sense of humour failure?What a pity,we need more smiles!

  • Mike - 2011-10-26 17:59

    Thanks to Feministwhatever you have blown a lighthearted attempt to lighten up our daily grind out the water. Ridiculous, keep up the good work, tomorrow we will also be a USA, UK nanny state with stupid rules and no more common sense due to over sensitive souls that pushing their own insecurities and narrow minded views down our throats. Good going! Thanks for being so backwards! I will support the Foshini group for at least having the balls to poke a bit of fun with us all and at least they have some sense of humor!