Milan based Fashion house Dolce & Gabbana has filed a defamation suit against US bloggers Diet Prada for criticising their allegedly stereotypical ad campaign from 2018.
The bloggers alleged that the depiction of Chinese woman trying to eat Italian food via chopsticks were stereotypical and sexist. After the fashion bloggers criticised the fashion house, one of the designers, Stefano Gabbana also posted alleged anti-China comments, calling it country of sh*t.
Diet Prada immediately ‘cancelled’ the designers. Subsequently, the Asian consumers had boycotted D&G brand. Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi had announced on Weibo that she will not be attending the Dolce & Gabbana show, and neither she nor her team will be buying any D&G products moving forward. Other Chinese celebrities who were scheduled to attend the fashion show such as Li BingBing, Dilraba Dilmurat, Huang XiaoMing, Mu ZiYang had also boycotted the event. Model agencies Bentley and Xing Li too pulled out their models from the show.
A few hours later, D&G claimed on Instagram that their and their designers’ accounts were hacked and the post where Gabbana called China ‘sh*t’ country were unauthorised.
D&G also cancelled their fashion show in Shanghai, four hours before it was scheduled to start. However, Diet Prada had then claimed that the show was actually cancelled by Cultural Affairs Bureau of Shanghai.
The suit was filed back in 2019 but it became public earlier this week after Diet Prada posted it on their Instagram account. As per reports, the suit demands damages to the tune of €3 million for Dolce & Gabbana and another €1 million for Stefano Gabbana himself. The suit also seeks over €8.6 million for the cancellation of the Shanghai show, another €8.6 million for staff expenditures and €89.6 million for lost Asian sales from November 2018-March 2019.
Last Monday, Tony Liu and Lindsey Schuyler, the bloggers who run Diet Prada, filed a defence of their freedom of speech.