Bottega Veneta has been the hottest fashion house on social media since the British designer Daniel Lee arrived at the Milanese label less than three years ago.
The model Rosie Huntington-Whiteley posted no fewer than 39 selfies featuring her “Pouch” handbag in the space of three months. When four British Vogue staffers realised they were all wearing clothes or accessories from the label one day in September 2019, they posted a photo captioned: “We have a new desk dress code @bottegaveneta”.
But in a move which hints at a fashion backlash against Instagram, Bottega Veneta has cut all ties with social media. It is replacing social posts with a quarterly online magazine that Lee hopes will offer “more progressive and more thoughtful” content than scrolling through an Instagram feed.
“Social media represents the homogenisation of culture,” the 35-year-old tells the Guardian in advance of Wednesday’s launch of the magazine. “Everyone sees the same stream of content. A huge amount of thought goes into what I do, and social media oversimplifies it.”
Called Issue, the “digital journal” features a newly commissioned music video for Missy Elliott’s 1999 classic Hot Boyz. The video, which was filmed by the photographer Derek Blanks, is the type of content, Lee hopes, that an audience will “sit down with, like you would with a film”.
The move is a curveball, because Instagram has replaced the traditional glossy magazine as the most powerful platform in fashion. Bottega Veneta is a brand in the ascendant, having achieved 4.8% revenue growth last year, when most luxury labels took a severe hit (revenue at Gucci, for example, was down by 21.5%). As a result, the eyes of the fashion industry are watching, and in a world where social media increasingly shapes culture, politics and lifestyle the implications go beyond fashion.
Issue is an audiovisual magazine with fashion photography, music and video. There are voiceovers and music, but no text. Neneh Cherry narrates footage of Bottega Veneta’s most recent catwalk show at Sadler’s Wells in London. The Berlin-based roller skater Oumi Janta spins on her skates under a disco ball in a silk-fringed cocktail dress, and there is a heart-stopping short film that captures the daredevil rooftop stunts of the British parkour collective STORROR.
The contrast with Instagram, is intentional. “There is a mood of playground bullying on social media which I don’t really like,” says Lee. “I wanted to do something joyful instead. We are not just a brand, we are a team of people who work together, and I don’t want to collude in an atmosphere that feels negative.”
Clothes from past collections are photographed alongside new season pieces, “which just makes sense – there is longevity in the pieces we make”. (After all, a Bottega Veneta cotton-terry T-shirt, one of the simplest pieces currently on sale, retails for £365.)
Lee, who won four British fashion awards in 2019 – a record unmatched by Alexander McQueen, Vivienne Westwood or Stella McCartney – insists that cutting ties with social media is not a stunt, saying: “This wasn’t about a room full of executives, talking marketing strategy.”
But Bottega Veneta is in the enviable have-its-cake-and-eat-it position of continuing to benefit from Instagram exposure without posting on social media. The buzz around the brand means influencers and celebrities are likely to continue posting their Bottega Veneta selfies. One fan account, @newbottega, has half a million followers. “I’m very happy to be on other people’s Instagram,” says Lee. “That conversation with fans is amazing and we are grateful to have it.”
Students walk out at White Bear Lake High School after racist, threatening social media post
Cox said she was the first person invited into an Instagram group chat Wednesday night with a profane title, where an anonymous user criticized her for wearing a Black Lives Matter mask.
She said other members of the school’s Black Excellence Club were also invited into the group chat, where they were threatened and called racist names.
While most of the messages are too inappropriate to show on our website, some of the others read:
“Watch your back. We do not want you guys here.”
“GET HANGED. DIE. KILL YOURSELF.”
“That’s why George Floyd died can’t wait until everyone your color leaves like that.”
“You should get hanged. You’re a dirty African girl. Nobody wants you here. Go to a black school, This is WHITE bear lake.”
Senior Jessica Kabbe said she was also targeted in the messages.
“I’m still in shock. I know racism is still a thing, but I didn’t know people would take it to this extent. This is way too far. This is honestly just ridiculous. I feel hurt, I’m irritated, I’m angry, I’m uneasy. I just want to cry. I want to scream,” Kabbe said.
White Bear Lake Police Department confirmed they are investigating the messages, which could range from disorderly conduct to terroristic threats. They said they may have to issue subpoenas to the social media sites to trace the messages in order to determine who sent them. The department said they take all threats very seriously, especially those directed at children.
Kabbe said the Instagram account where the messages originated has now been deleted.
She said she was encouraged to see the support of fellow students, who marched nearly two miles in the rain during Friday’s walkout, but she would like to see school administrators do more to confront racism among students.
“What my school can do better is just help regulate that saying the N-world and being racist is not normal. That shouldn’t be happening at a school. I shouldn’t feel uneasy or unsafe to come to school,” Kabbe said.
Friday’s walkout, march and rally lasted nearly two hours. Some students pressed the principal in front of the crowd as to why the district has not acted sooner.
“We need to take a closer look at what we’re doing and do it much better,” answered South Campus Principal Don Bosch.
Students also called on administrators to take reports of racism seriously and asked that school policies be reformed to include harsher penalties for hate speech and bullying.
“There are only 20% of us that are of color in this school. What are we supposed to do against 80% of people? We need them to help us, especially the adults,” Cox said. “I just need a change, and if it has to start in little old White Bear Lake, Minnesota, then that’s where it’s going to start.”
The school district did not respond to 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS’ request for an interview but shared this letter, which they sent to district families Thursday:
Dear White Bear Lake Area High School Students and Families,
We want to inform you that North and South Campus Administration has been notified that last night an anonymous instagram account and group chat was created that was directed towards our students of color. The language towards our students of color was racist, hateful, threatening, and unacceptable which has resulted in students not feeling safe at school.
Please know that an investigation is underway to determine who is behind these deplorable, racist social media posts. We are working closely with our partners in law enforcement to determine as quickly as possible who is responsible.
We stand united in our commitment to ensure a safe, respectful environment for our students, and racism and racist behavior will not be tolerated.
Ang Nelson and Don Bosch
WBLAHS North and South Campus Principals
How to make a TikTok Duet (on Instagram, too)
If you’re on TikTok — or have seen TikTok videos reposted elsewhere — you’ve likely seen a Duet. Sometimes TikTok creators film videos specifically designed for other users on the app to add to. They can range from dances to singing songs or lip-syncing songs to viral challenges to blind reacts and more.
Along with features like Stitch, TikTok Duets are another way for creators to interact with each other and for new TikTok-ers to get their foot in the “influencer door.”
How to duet a video on TikTok
1. Download the TikTok app and make an account if you haven’t already.
2. Open the app and find a video you want to duet with. Sometimes creators will make videos specifically for someone to duet with. You might stumble across one in your main For You or Following feeds, but you can also search hashtags like #Duet, #DuetChallenge or #DuetWithMe. The video doesn’t have to be originally filmed to duet, though.
3. Optional tip: Once you find a video, depending on what it is, you might want to “rehearse” a few times before recording. Don’t worry though, it’s not a one-take-only situation.
4. After you find a video, tap the three-dot More icon in the bottom right of the video.
5. Choose Duet (if Duet isn’t available, that means the creator turned it off in their own settings).
6. Start recording.
7. When you’ve finished, add any special effects or edits and tap the checkmark. You can also add a few more effects after tapping the checkmark.
8. Tap Next after you’ve edited the video.
9. Before you publish, you can adjust your settings — allow or disallow comments, decide who can view the video and if others can duet or stitch with your video and add a description and additional hashtags.
10. Tap Post (or you can save to drafts for more editing).
Now you’re one step closer to TikTok fame (or at least a fun post for your own friends and followers).
Don’t use TikTok? Try Instagram’s Remix feature for duets
If you don’t have a TikTok account, social media app Instagram has its own take on the short video tool called Instagram Reels (here’s how to use Reels), as well as a new Duet-style feature called Remix. With the latest version of the app, you’ll be able to find Reels between Search and Instagram Shopping tabs at the bottom of the screen.
Here’s how to Remix an Instagram Reel
1. Open the Instagram app. Download and make an account if you haven’t already.
2. Open the Reels tab and find a Reel you want to remix.
3. Tap the three-dot More icon on your chosen Reel.
4. If Remix is available for you, choose the option Remix This Reel.
5. From there, the interface works the same as making a Reel — the Reel you’re remixing will just be in the shot. Start filming and you can add music, edits and stickers.
6. Tap next to watch and finalize any edits. Like TikTok, you can record and edit as much as you want.
7. Tap next again, write in a caption, tag people and choose to add it as a Reel or to your Instagram Stories.
8. Tap Share or Save Draft.
Discover the latest apps: Be the first to know about the hottest new apps with the CNET Apps Today newsletter.
The dream of Oculus VR: Five years later
Kardashian lawyers work to remove image of Khloe from social media. Could it be backfiring?
The Kardashian family and their team appear to be working to remove an image of Khloe Kardashian from social media after it was reportedly posted without her approval.
The moment the image was posted online, fans began to repost it. It has been shared multiple times by countless accounts.
But in a bid by lawyers to stop the image spreading further, accounts claim they have received legal notices for sharing the image, with some claiming they were blocked on platforms for reposting it.
Wait, what does the picture show?
The image in question shows Khloe Kardashian standing by the pool in a bikini.
The image looks noticeably different from the other images the reality star posts — in this image, her skin doesn’t have an artificially smooth finish and her curves are different.
Essentially, the image appears not to be airbrushed.
Khloe Kardashian has since addressed the situation by posting multiple videos of her “unretouched and unfiltered” body to Instagram along with a statement.
“The photo that was posted this week is beautiful,” the post begins.
“But as someone who has struggled with body image her whole life, when someone takes a photo of you that isn’t flattering […] and then shares it to the world, you should have every right to ask for it to not be shared — regardless of who you are.”
“I’m of course not asking for sympathy, but I am asking to be acknowledged for being human.”
Who took it?
According to various take-down notices posted online, the image was taken by Mary Jo “MJ” Shannon, Kris Jenner’s mother and Khloe Kardashian’s grandmother.
As the person that took the image, Ms Shannon is therefore the copyright owner.
Tracy Romulus, chief marketing officer for KKW Brands, told Page Six that the picture was taken “during a private family gathering and posted to social media without permission by mistake by an assistant”.
She went on:
The response from the Kardashian team was broad and swift, issuing takedown notices across several social media platforms, including Instagram, Twitter and Reddit.
One Twitter account @KosmeticKrys posted unverified screenshots of notices that their account had been locked for reposting the image, as well as a takedown request from Los Angeles law firm Lavely & Singer P.C.
Fans seemed bewildered by the response — Khloe Kardashian generally only posts airbrushed pictures, but in this image she appeared as her natural self.
Many were left wondering why the Kardashians took such a strong response to what was a widely celebrated “realistic” image of the reality star.
Is this kind of response common?
Yes and no.
Takedown notices are quite common on social media platforms.
They are invoked under the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) which protects copyright owners who believe their rights under US copyright laws have been infringed.
The ABC contacted Instagram for comment and was directed to the platform’s policy on intellectual property that states:
“Generally, copyright protects original expression such as words or images.
What makes this situation interesting is the nature of the content in question and the ferocity with which the takedown notices are being issued.
The image of Khloe Kardashian has been generally well received from her predominantly female audience, to whom she regularly stresses the importance of body positivity.
Like this recent post to her 136 million followers about accepting and loving stretch marks:
But the amount of effort being invested in taking down each copy of the image across Instagram, Twitter and Reddit sends a quite different message.
Is it too late to contain the image from spreading further?
It is hard to say.
After circulating for about two days, the image is likely experiencing the Streisand Effect, where the effort to suppress information — a story, a video or a picture — only amplifies it further.
The Streisand Effect is named for legendary singer Barbra Streisand, who tried to suppress pictures taken of her house by suing the photographer.
She claimed the photographer had violated her privacy by posting the image of her Malibu home on a website designed to document excessive development on California’s coast.
But the resulting publicity from the lawsuit drove significantly more traffic to the website than it would otherwise attract.
The effort to suppress Khloe Kardashian’s image could be having a similar effect.