The clothing brand Boy London is known worldwide, partly due to its popularity with celebrity figures. Their logo consists of an eagle, wings spread, atop a small structure. While the squared wings give the logo a vaguely Aztec feel, some have associated it with a more European symbol: the eagle used by the Nazis during WWII. Due to this perceived similarity, many are requesting that Boy London now change its branding.
Controversy over the logo is starting to affect sales, as the brand has already been removed from some stores due to the customer complaints. To those whose families were closely affected by the Second World War, the choice of logo by Boy London has struck an extremely sour chord. Some people who were previously unaware of the similarity between the clothing logo and the symbol of the Nazi Party have stopped wearing the clothing brand altogether. This is putting immense pressure on the brand to cave in to consumer criticism.
While sales and public image have already been affected, the brand has remained steadfast that they are not at fault for the comparison. They say that their logo is based more on the symbolism of the Roman Empire than anything else, and Boy London chose this symbol for its qualities of luxury, unity, and strength, which they believe are directly opposite what many perceive to be the messages of the Nazi Party.
Company founder John Krivine has commented that the nature of the logo does not matter to him so long as it looks good. The brand itself was founded during the rise of punk rock, during which some brands aside from Boy London used swastikas and other imagery to look unique and memorable. The swastika, like the eagle, is a much older symbol than the Nazi party with many more meanings than those imbued by the Third Reich, The Telegraph reports.
While unfortunate for Boy London that their brand has potentially be misperceived, history of punk fashion calls into question whether or not the similarity between their logo and the Nazi eagle is truly an accident. Either way, they may very well have to bend to consumer requests or else risk losing business, as has already been happening. Even if their intentions are pure as they claim, public reception is the natural decider of success within their industry. Boy London may not have a choice in whether their logo changes or remains the same—at least, not if they wish to stay in business.