Friday, May 25, 2007
CafePress Crosses the Line on Cycling Products
"What on earth would possess someone to promote and sell promotional materials that makes light of - even legitimizes - hitting and verbally abusing cyclists? Ask the folks at CafePress, because I'm not sure I can answer that for them. They are an on-line store that has loads of other products that are clever, humorous, ironic, pointed, self-deprecating, off-the-wall.
"And then they have artwork that shows a cyclist getting hit by a motorist, with an accompanying explicit epithet that anyone that's ridden a bike in the last 24 hours will likely have heard, along the lines of "excuse me, but I think you are in my way." They have it for bumper stickers, mugs, T-shirts.
"I wonder if they also have klever klan merchandise encouraging folks to break race laws. Perhaps snappy graphics showing people being persecuted for their sexual orientation or religious beliefs of other lifestyle choices. Is there a line in humorous "I support torture" stickers that flout international law as well as domestic laws and good taste?
"So why would they think it is OK to glorify violence against cyclists? Free speech - to promote behavior that kills and injures people every single day of the year already? We'll be waiting to hear from them."
What galls me is that CafePress does, I do believe, have the usual standards that you can't post things that promote terrorism or violent crime (don't know about, say, smokin' stuff) - and clearly they don't think this is in that category, though I do suppose it could have slipped in under the radar. Let's just see how long it takes them to respond.