01Amazon's Response to Paris "Black Friday" Attacks Was Bold Solidarite'
The banner on the home page of the Amazon.com websites in 10 countries changed to a big, bold message of solidarity for the city of Paris the day after terrorist attacks occurred in several restaurants and a concert venue on a true Black Friday, November 13, 2015.
Terrorist attacks in the city of Paris on November 13, 2015 created a true Black Friday event that the City of Light, fashion and retailing will never forget. In response to the Paris Black Friday attacks, Amazon.com was one of the first of the largest U.S. based retail companies to display a message and image of solidarity for the city of Paris and its people on the home pages of the Amazon websites operating in ten different countries.
Even though Amazon.com reportedly ships more than 50 million packages to customers in France, the attitude of French consumers towards America's largest online retailer is not always friendly. Amazon.com has also been at odds with the French government and the French business community since it started doing business in France in 2011.
French legislators have designed specific laws that are referred to as "anti Amazon" legislation to protect businesses based in France by making it more difficult for Amazon to compete with them. Also, in 2012 the French government issued Amazon a $252 million fine for tax evasion in response to Amazon's decision to funnel revenue generated in France through Luxembourg in order to get tax breaks there.
NEXT: Post-Attack Silence of Largest France Retailers: Fear of Retaliation? >>
02Post-Attack Silence of Largest France Retailers: Fear of Retaliation?
The image on the Hermes Facebook page didn't change in response to the Black Friday November 13th terrorist attacks in Paris, and the laughing face of the model on its cover photo seemed wildly inappropriate.
While retailers around the world were publicly expressing solidarity for France in the wake of the Black Friday November 13th terrorist attacks, France's largest retail chains remained oddly silent on the subject. Everything looked like business as usual on the websites and social media pages of France based retailers like Cartier, Christian Louboutin, and L'Occitane en Provence.
It is safe to assume that the post-attack silence of France's largest retail chains following the tragedy in Paris is linked to fear of retaliation. After the retaliatory terrorist shootings at the Charlie Hebdo Magazine offices in January, 2015, it is understandable why France's largest retail chains would be hesitant to take a stand and possibly put their stores, employees, and customers at risk for future terrorist retaliatory strikes.
Out the largest retail chains based in France, only Chanel and the LVMH group of brands, (which includes Louis Vuitton) made public reference to consumers about the Paris attacks on their Internet properties. In fact, the half-laughing model photo that remained unchanged on the Hermes Facebook was a shocking contrast to the emotions that retailers and consumers were feeling after the Black Friday Paris attacks in general.
NEXT: Retaliation Fears in Gaps Nonspecific Response to Paris Black Friday >>
03Retaliation Fears in Gap's Nonspecific Response to Paris Black Friday
It is also most likely retaliation fears that motivated the nonspecific response to the Paris Black Friday terrorist attacks from Gap Inc. The message tweeted to the world via the Gap's Twitter account read "Our thoughts and hearts are with all of the people impacted by the recent tragedies."
With no mention of Paris and a generic reference to "tragedies," it seems that the leaders at the Gap wanted its global customers to know that it cares about the Paris Black Friday terrorist attacks without getting specifically involved in any way that might draw future retaliatory terrorist attacks in any of its more than 3,600 Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic Athleta, or INTERMIX stores.
NEXT: LVMH Group One of Few Paris Retailers to Respond to Paris Black Friday >>
04LVMH Group One of Few Paris Retailers to Respond to Paris Black Friday
The LVMH group was one of the few major retailers based in Paris that was brave enough to respond publicly to the "Paris Black Friday" November 13th terrorist attacks. The day after the Friday the 13th terrorist attacks in Paris, the cover image on the LVMH corporate Facebook and Twitter social media pages were both turned into a solid black block.
Hundreds of LVMH fans and followers "liked" LVMH's willingness to take a public stand on such politically charged and volatile Paris Black Friday events.
NEXT: Italy's Valentino Sends Paris Prayers After Black Friday the 13th >>
05Italy's Valentino Sends Paris Prayers After Black Friday the 13th
Retailer and fellow fashion friend Valentino sent the message "Pray for Paris" in response to the Black Friday the 13th terrorist attacks. As one of Italy's iconic fashion designers and luxury retailers, Valentino has a well-known runway rivalry with France's Louis Vuitton.
But as the proverb goes... the enemy of my enemy is my friend. And in times of great global tragedy, competition and business rivalries are put into a different perspective.
NEXT: US Retailer Abercrombie & Fitch Has a Nearby Paris Flagship Store and Sends Support >>
06US Retail Abercrombie & Fitch Has Paris Flagship Store, Sends Support
Even though U.S. retailer Abercrombie & Fitch operates just one retail flagship store in the country of France (on the Champs Elysees), it sent a simple message of support via its Twitter account shortly after the Paris Black Friday the 13th terrorist attacks. "In our hearts - Paris" was the message along with French flag.
The Abercrombie & Fitch Paris retail flagship store is located just 6.5 km from the Bataclan Theatre, which was the site of one of the coordinated terrorist attacks on November 13, 2015 where the largest number of people were killed and injured.
NEXT: Facebook Shows Solidarity with Safety Check, Viral French Flag Overlay >>
07Facebook Shows Solidarity with Safety Check, Viral French Flag Overlay
Facebook fulfilled its mission statement of "giving the world the power to share" in the aftermath of the Paris Black Friday the 13th terrorist attacks. The Facebook Safety Check system was activated so that people in France could easily notify their loved ones about the status of their safety and well-being.
Additionally, a viral global movement of solidarity was launched on Facebook, with millions of people worldwide superimposing a French flag over their Facebook profile photo. It's not known whether Mark Zuckerberg started the French flag photo phenomenon, but he did participate with his own profile photo on his own Facebook page, albeit with a profile photo that is so jovial as to be creepy, given the circumstances.