"H&M continues getting heat for the cyborg models on its website, this after a representative told the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet the company uses virtual bodies to best display the clothes -- increasingly standard practise in the fashion industry...H&M defended the technique, explaining that clothes look better on virtual mannequins than on humans"

Me and my wife regularly discuss issues relating to perceptions of attractiveness in the media etc, and to me, this one just about goes beyond the pail. What really fries me is this line

“This is not about ideals or to show off a perfect body, we do this to demonstrate an item of clothing," Mr. Andersson told Aftonbladet.

That isn't an excuse.

Let's break it down here. Models are used why? To show an item of clothing off. Why do you want to show that item of clothing off? To make people want to buy it. But surely then, to make it most attractive you will show it off on the person you consider it makes look the most attractive? Do you not see, H&M the very small number of steps it takes people to see that when you put a model up, you are assisting in the creation of an idealised female type. The fact that you are now having to go to extremes and actually manufacture your models is kind of...socially dangerous. You're effectively presenting women with ideals, whether you intend to or not, that are not in fact real.

Does this not seem rather despicable?

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Said everything yourself Verty, crazy feckers. 
To say the very least. 


I think it's dangerous too, considering how the fashion industry always push for thinner, unhealthy models. But I don't think these artificial bodies look so different from real models as of yet. I don't understand how they can suppose their clothes look better on these bodies as opposed to real ones. Looks the same to me, skinny, beautiful, although a weird pose I must admit... I obviously just a way for them to save money. And it's not just female ideal either; the male ideal is equally as narrow and hard to live up too, for those of us without the right genes and/or athletic habits.

But I don't think these artificial bodies look so different from real models as of yet.

As of yet, but if we tollerate this now, its only a few steps to using 100% fake people as models.

It's definately cause for alert. I mean I don't really buy the whole media constructed body ideal thing, because a well shaped body is really a piece of art, but still if they were to incrementally tweek artificial bodies into shapes that are not humanly possible to achieve, then of course it's a problem if we infact were to find them attractive.

I'm actually writing a paper about this and the effect it has on women and the descisions they make about their body. Specificly cosmetic surgery because of unhappiness about their body image as a result of impossible mediagenerated beauty ideals. Really scary actually. Already some women are so obsessed with looking like the ideal that they choose for fake...

I actually read an article defending these "models," and it raised a very good point:

Imagine an online shop where your preferred weight/height/measurements are used to generate 3D models of the bodies that you want to see. Imagine if there was an API for this that could be used across all online clothing stores you visit, so that no matter what site you were looking at, the models appeared the way that you wanted them to. Standardized beauty ideals would become less relevant, because people would have greater control over their exposure to them.

In the short term, it may seem like computer-generated models reinforce a homogenous beauty standard. In the long term, this technology may pave the way towards greater body diversity and inclusiveness.

Of course, right now it just seems like a horrible idea, for all the reasons already stated.

That feature would be a very consumer friendly advantage for any online store to have, I like it. But as for adverticement, then I don't think it won't have any impact. I think we'll never have plump bodies in adds. Personally I'm okey with that.

Eh, I couldn't care if I wanted to. The company has the right to model their clothes on whatever they want and if it bothers people they can quit purchasing from that company. Of course if the past sets any kind of precedent for the future this won't cause sales to falter at all no matter how much it bothers people. At the end of the day this is just how capitalism works.

I think a quote from Nietzsche sums this up pretty well. "The vanity of others offends our taste only when it offends our vanity."

We're all vain and shallow here, if we weren't it wouldn't bother us and it wouldn't affect our opinions of ourselves. 

Are we 'vain and shallow' though? Or just insecure? Or are the two intertwined in some interesting way? Insecurity would account for our opinions of ourselves being altered by the 'ideals' we see on TV and therefore companies should try to help the population to feel better about themselves. They have so much power that they could use.

This is capitalism, the only thing companies should do in a system like this is make money. There is absolutely no reason for companies to try and help people especially when people can help themselves by doing their best to only support companies that act in a way they see to be more morally fit than other companies. Like I said, if their costumers really truly hate what this company is doing then they should boycott them until they change their policies. (Of course boycotting them doesn't work if you weren't already a costumer to begin with so keep that in mind.) However when companies started using anorexic models they didn't lose any business so I'm not expecting much of a true backlash. 

And insecurity is a symptom of vanity. 

This is capitalism, the only thing companies should do in a system like this is make money.

Capitalism should not be unregulated. The social consequences of things like this could be catastrophic. That's why these things are wrong.


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