Canada Goose Donates Down Jackets to Earthquake-stricken Area Suspected of Being Resold on Idle Fish, Official Response: "The situation circulated online is not true," How do you view this matter?

Recently, a seller on a second-hand trading platform is offering what appears to be Canada Goose down jackets meant for aid to the earthquake-stricken region of Gansu. On December 21st, Canada Goose posted a message on its official Weibo account stating that they had donated over 2000 down jackets and cold-weather supplies in partnership with the Shanghai Charity Foundation to aid the Gansu earthquake-stricken area. There have been various responses regarding the resale of Canada Goose donations for Gansu disaster area. Read more.

Compared to reselling goods, there is a higher probability of selling counterfeit products during this opportunity. When asked, it’s said to be specially supplied, and the differences are all attributed to the special supply.

Feels like a publicity stunt

To be honest, even if each of these down jackets were distributed to disaster victims one by one, there would inevitably be reselling going on…

Selling them for 8,500 each, I would do it too, then switch to a domestically-produced one for 500 and make a profit of 8,000.

For all donated items, the words “Donated items - Prohibited for sale” must be printed, and it must be printed prominently.

A Not Entirely Appropriate Suggestion

When it comes to donating supplies, it’s probably best not to use luxury items like these. A few days ago, when Bai Bing donated to Gucci, I felt it wasn’t appropriate. Gucci isn’t cheap, can it really reach the disaster victims? When we were young, there was the “Hope Project.” Better clothes, shoes, backpacks, new things - all of these were taken by the children of local officials in those areas. The children who truly needed them still had tattered items. When donating supplies to disaster-stricken areas, unless there are specific reasons, it’s really better to have unbranded, no-name items from factories, as long as the quality is acceptable. I don’t deny the good intentions of Canada Goose and Bai Bing, but when there are many people and the items are too good, many unexpected things can happen.

Donating Luxury Items Directly to Disaster Areas Is Foolish

Whether it’s individuals or companies, donating luxury items directly to disaster-stricken areas is foolish, akin to dropping a bomb there.

Even if, during transportation, there’s not a hint of corruption, and all the items are delivered to individuals in remote areas, why give them luxury items at this point? Are they for warmth? Warmth only requires warm clothing; there’s no need for any branded items.

Then there’s the matter of how to distribute these 2,000 pieces of clothing and who should receive them. Are they going to be distributed as military coats worth a couple of hundred each? Why should one family get 12,000 yuan worth of goods while another gets only 2,000 yuan? Did one family use connections or have connections?

When a family’s house has been shattered by an earthquake, their child is in school, someone in the family needs medical treatment, and their annual income is only 20,000 yuan, and you tell them that the clothing they have received is worth over 10,000 yuan, do you think they will continue wearing it, or will they sell it for money?

Can you control them now? Can you control them later when they decide to sell it for money?

And when they actually sell these clothes, and they end up in the second-hand market, there will immediately be people saying, “Isn’t this the Canada Goose clothing for disaster relief? It must have been embezzled, causing a public outcry or putting the blame on the local government.”

What’s even more astonishing, according to the information on the Shanghai Charity Network: the total value of the third batch of disaster relief supplies exceeds 15 million yuan, including 1,000 warm winter coats, 500 sleeping bags, 2,001 Canada Goose down jackets, 74 pairs of gloves, 3,000 heat packs, and 3,000 thermos cups. I have never seen donations valued at market prices before. There were bloggers who organized the donation of military coats and small-size warm down jackets to the disaster area at the first opportunity, collecting a few thousand yuan and sending out hundreds of warm outerwear. How could the value of these materials exceed ten million yuan?

Assisting disaster victims with luxury items that lack practical value and rely solely on brand recognition to establish their worth is like a game thought up by bored wealthy people looking for entertainment.

Put Yourself in Their Shoes

Consider this, if you received a batch of disaster relief supplies, would you hang hundreds of them on an online marketplace like “Idle Fish” and intentionally emphasize that they are disaster relief supplies? What’s the difference between that and turning yourself in to the authorities?

I don’t believe a single word from many of these “Idle Fish” sellers. Last time, I bought an Apple data cable that was advertised as “unused spare original.” When I tried to use it, it didn’t charge my device. I contacted the seller, and they replaced it with another cable, but none of them were genuine.

Sellers of counterfeit goods always like to spin a story to make you believe that what they’re selling is real. When you approach them with a complaint, they often respond with a snide remark: “At this price, didn’t you suspect something?”

However, when counterfeit goods sellers take it to the extreme by fabricating stories involving natural disasters and charitable organizations that already have a questionable reputation, it not only damages their credibility but also shows a lack of intelligence.

Little Difference Between Major Disasters and Military Matters

In times of major disasters or during military conflicts, there isn’t much difference when it comes to spreading rumors.

If it were wartime, daring to use such rumors to incite public opinion and shake the morale of the front lines would result in immediate arrest and execution, with efforts made to uncover the network behind it.

However, in this case of spreading rumors, the only consequence is the loss of an online account. The intention here isn’t primarily to sell counterfeit goods; rather, it’s to destabilize social order and poison people’s minds. The only problem is that this kind of damage is difficult to quantify.

What should be taken seriously is treated lightly, and what should be treated lightly is weighed down like Mount Tai. I find myself increasingly baffled by it all.

Nothing Unusual – Common Practice in Logistics

There’s nothing particularly remarkable about this; those who have dealt with managing supplies and logistics often do the same.

If I, personally, have no personal gain from it, I would keep these obviously high-value luxury items in the warehouse without distributing them to anyone. If you question me, I can take you there, the items are right here. If you ask why I’m not distributing them, I’ll politely respond, “We have enough military coats in this section. Do you want warmth or a brand name?” That should settle the matter.

With only 2,000 of these items, how do I distribute them? To whom? If I don’t distribute them to someone, they’ll report me. Keeping them in the warehouse might lead to criticism, but at least no one would accuse me of taking more than my share. However, once I distribute them and someone doesn’t receive one, they will surely believe that I benefited unfairly. The key issue is that the items are gone, and I have to prove my innocence.

That’s how it is in China – either everyone has it, or no one has it. Some people having it while others don’t just doesn’t work.

Likely a Publicity Stunt

This is most likely a publicity stunt because there are numerous high-quality counterfeit Canada Goose products available online. Some of these knockoffs have reached a point where it’s difficult to distinguish them from genuine items. Moreover, the production cost of Canada Goose is not as high as one might imagine; it’s more about brand premium.

If you search on platforms like PDD (Pinduoduo) now, you’ll find plenty of high-quality counterfeit items being sold. A former colleague at my previous company once purchased a so-called “original high-quality replica” and she was quite honest about it, openly admitting to everyone that it was a fake.

Another colleague from the same company bought a genuine Canada Goose product from the official store in Sanlitun, Beijing, and they happened to have the same style.

The official Canada Goose store in Sanlitun, Beijing.

I remember it was a similar style, and out of curiosity, we compared and studied their clothes closely for a long time, even trying them on to assess the warmth performance.

To be honest, most of us in our department couldn’t discern any significant differences. Of course, we aren’t professional experts, but it does illustrate that high-quality replicas can indeed pass as genuine items for the average person if you don’t exhibit any suspicion.

By the way, the colleague who bought the high-quality replica came from a well-off family in Beijing, with multiple properties totaling 12 million yuan, two parking spaces worth a total of 1 million yuan, and two cars—a Mercedes-Benz G-Class and a Tesla Model X.

On the other hand, the colleague who purchased the authentic Canada Goose product was a migrant from a rural area in Baiyin, Gansu. Her family was not wealthy, and she had two younger brothers. However, you couldn’t tell her rural background from her demeanor.

Of course, this is a bit of a digression. I just wanted to express my speculation: this “Idle Fish” user most likely wants to capitalize on the buzz by selling high-quality replicas at the same price as genuine items. Furthermore, they can rationalize not having “receipts” by using the guise of “donating supplies” to pass scrutiny.

However, once these 2,000 Canada Goose items are actually distributed to the disaster victims, there is indeed a possibility that some people may resell them to make ends meet. After all, the area is not affluent, and Canada Goose is considered a luxury brand even for urban middle-class individuals, let alone in small towns in Northwest China.

For the local residents, buying regular down jackets for a few hundred yuan, or even cheaper cotton-padded coats, would suffice for keeping warm. Wearing such expensive luxury down jackets might be seen as wasteful, and it might be more practical to sell them for some extra cash.

Sensationalism: Taken Seriously by Many

There are so many counterfeit products on Idle Fish; it’s hard to keep count. This underscores the need for more effective anti-fraud awareness campaigns that truly resonate with people.

There’s no shortage of news creating social trust crises, but let’s not contribute to undermining social trust ourselves.

In case you ever need someone else’s help, you’ll understand the feeling of not being trusted.

We need to pay attention to the public sphere and reject the spread of rumors and false information on the internet.

When it comes to natural disasters, we should offer assistance without too much hesitation or unnecessary suspicion. The rescue mechanisms are in place, supervision mechanisms are active, and law enforcement agencies are working at full capacity. During such times, those attempting to profit from selling supplies will surely face strict scrutiny!

Disaster relief is not like the chaotic scenes of ancient times. Some people should refrain from imagining opportunistic behaviors!

Strong Disapproval of Malicious Marketing

I truly detest and condemn actions like malicious marketing, which are utterly ruthless. Individuals who engage in such behavior must have dark motives, prioritizing personal gain and traffic over integrity. Permanently banning such individuals is the right course of action.

The internet is not a lawless space, and every person should abide by the rules, exercise caution in their speech and actions. Disaster response and relief efforts are of utmost importance, and anyone spreading rumors or causing trouble should face legal consequences. They should by no means be allowed to escape justice.

Are the Demons and Monsters of the Pandemic Still Around?

Are they still parading around here as if they were foreign guests?

Malicious Marketing: Profiting from Disaster Relief

“First come, first served” advertisements, the routine of live-streaming to sell products.

There is a reason to believe that someone is selling counterfeit goods under the guise of providing assistance to the earthquake-stricken area, aiming to make a huge profit during a national crisis.

After all, there is a daily flow of traffic for disaster relief on the internet now. To attract attention, some choose to play on the edge. The goal is simply to sell more and, in this case, counterfeit goods.

Just take a look at the wording in the title advertisements, and you’ll understand what’s going on. When they mention having only a few hundred pieces, and it’s a “first come, first served” situation, that’s a form of hunger marketing—a common tactic used in live-streaming sales.

They also mention the lack of washing labels and tags, and a strict “no returns or exchanges” policy. This implies that if there are any issues with the product, don’t bother asking for a refund or exchange. So, what else could these products be but counterfeits?

Recently, a user on Idle Fish posted: “Assisting the Gansu earthquake-stricken area with Canada Goose products. You can tell from the video that these products are exceptional. There are only a few hundred pieces, and it’s first come, first served. No washing labels, no tags, no returns or exchanges.” The post included a video. At present, this post has been deleted.

Without naming the platform, there is a plethora of products on second-hand platforms, and counterfeit goods are abundant. This has long been a point of criticism and is not a recent development.

Passing off fake goods as real, presenting lower-quality items as high-end—these are tactics that some people are fond of employing.

Currently, the official response has been issued, stating that the information on the internet is not accurate. Relevant platforms have verified the information and taken action against the accounts involved.

Idle Fish platform promptly conducted an investigation, and the actual situation is that this user was trying to create hype and drive traffic by selling Canada Goose products, fabricating information about disaster relief supplies. This behavior falls under malicious marketing and traffic generation. The platform has immediately removed the products and permanently banned the user’s account.

This user’s traffic-driven tactics have caused harm to relevant departments and generated public opinion on the internet. If the situation continues to escalate without control, it is hoped that the relevant authorities will actively report and handle the matter.

To clarify the context of the entire incident, those who deserve punishment must be penalized. It should not be limited to just suspending accounts. In cases like this, there is a suspicion of disrupting public order.

Penalties can include detention for more than five days but less than ten days, along with a fine of up to 500 yuan.

Article 25 of the “Administrative Penalty Law” states that those who engage in any of the following behaviors shall be detained for more than five days but less than ten days and may also be fined up to 500 yuan; those with minor circumstances shall be detained for less than five days or fined up to 500 yuan:
(1) Spreading rumors, falsely reporting dangerous situations, epidemics, or police situations, or deliberately disturbing public order in other ways;
(2) Discharging false explosive, poisonous, radioactive, corrosive substances or pathogenic microorganisms and other dangerous substances to disturb public order;
(3) Making threats to implement arson, explosion, or discharging hazardous substances to disturb public order.

In such critical situations, especially with the distribution of supplies, tracking and supervision must be done effectively and made public.

If information is not transparent, there is a risk of it being turned into a rumor or being exploited by malicious individuals. It could even lead to the loss of supplies, preventing those truly in need from receiving assistance. This would render assistance meaningless and donations purposeless.

Supplies must be given to those in need.

As long as the distribution work is done properly, rumors will naturally be debunked. However, in today’s digital age, no matter how well you do, there will always be people who criticize and doubt. It’s an inevitable part of the landscape.

Relevant departments should also learn to listen to different voices instead of stubbornly sticking to their own views. They should engage with the online community, learn to debunk rumors, and dispel doubts.

Sometimes, it’s like this: whether it’s mud or something worse, it sticks to your pants. But we hope that the resources can be put to good use.

Challenges of Donating High-Value Goods to Disaster Areas

Yesterday, someone mentioned this matter to me. They began by saying, “Canada Goose has donated a batch of down jackets to the disaster-stricken area.” Before they could say anything else, I immediately asked, “What’s wrong with Canada Goose?”

Linxia has one of the lowest per capita GDPs in China, if not the lowest, with a per capita GDP of just over 10,000 yuan, and an annual per capita disposable income of only 9,000 yuan. An average person cannot afford a Canada Goose jacket with their yearly income. When donating Canada Goose jackets to the disaster area, given the limited quantity, there are essentially two options to ensure fairness:

  1. Random distribution to anyone.
  2. Distribute the jackets to the disaster victims and collect them back after the relief efforts are completed.

In the first scenario, it’s impossible to guarantee fair distribution to everyone. In the second scenario, even if fairness can be achieved by collecting the jackets afterward, what if the victims claim the jackets were lost or damaged? How would you handle that? Would you make them compensate?

Frankly, I’ve thought about it, and even if I had no ulterior motives, I wouldn’t be able to fairly distribute thousands of jackets. Instead, their extremely high value would likely lead to normal behavior like reselling—even if they were given to the victims. Put yourself in their shoes: if you lived in a second-tier city, received a jacket worth 100,000 yuan after a disaster, would you immediately sell it to make ends meet?

In this scenario, questioning the management of the disaster-stricken area is meaningless. In fact, whether it’s the organization’s staff or the genuine recipients of the jackets, both could potentially engage in resale because of the high value and indivisibility of these items.

Even if, as some suggest, “donated goods, no resale allowed,” were printed on the Canada Goose products, as mentioned earlier, the victims themselves might still choose to sell them. When the price of a single down jacket is enough to cover a person’s expenses for a year, even if it’s sold at only 10% of its value, it’s still a significant income for these individuals.

Of course, this issue extends beyond just Canada Goose. When it comes to donations to disaster-stricken areas, it’s either better to donate money directly or contribute practical items like instant noodles, canned goods, sanitary pads, tents, and other essential supplies. Only these items are likely to reach the affected population. Anything else of high value that cannot be divided may face various forms of implicit discrimination during distribution. Even if they do reach the disaster victims, people are likely to prefer selling them.

This is not a problem that can be easily solved with simple calls for “strengthened oversight” or “stricter regulations.” For businesses genuinely interested in helping disaster areas, they should avoid using such showy methods to test human nature, as it serves no real purpose in providing aid to those in need.

Criticisms of Xianyu and Canada Goose

Xianyu has undoubtedly found an opportunity to sell counterfeit goods, while Canada Goose’s approach is also questionable. Calculating based on 8,000 yuan per jacket, 2,000 jackets would amount to 16 million yuan. If you take out 10 million yuan and exchange it for instant noodles, purified water, tents, and sleeping bags, it would have been a sensible choice. This operation seems to be all about creating controversy.

Unlikely Scenario: Attempted Reselling of Disaster Relief Supplies

Recently, a user on Xianyu posted a claim: “Donating Canada Goose jackets to the Gansu earthquake-stricken area, you can see from the video that these are not ordinary goods. Only a few hundred pieces available, first come, first served, no washing label, no tags, no refunds or exchanges.” The user even included a video.

Engaging in such blatant reselling of disaster relief supplies would undoubtedly face severe scrutiny and strict enforcement. It’s essentially inviting trouble upon oneself.

This individual may have been overly clever, attempting to profit from this situation by selling counterfeit goods. While it’s possible that donated relief supplies may not have tags, having a washing label is a basic requirement.

In the context of providing aid to disaster-stricken areas, luxury items should not be part of the equation. They attract too much attention, making it challenging to genuinely distribute these high-end jackets to the needy victims.

Furthermore, even if these jackets were distributed to the affected population, once they realize the market value of these items, they would likely sell them without hesitation, even at a significantly reduced price.

A better approach would be to conduct a charitable auction of these jackets, using the proceeds to purchase more affordable down jackets. This way, more ordinary people affected by the earthquake could benefit from the assistance.

Showboating and Disrupting Disaster Relief

This ostentatious display disrupts the stability and unity of disaster relief efforts and deserves a hefty penalty for Canada Goose.

On platforms like Pinduoduo, you can buy 10,000 military coats for just a small sum.

Donating Luxury Goods and Its Problems

Donating luxury goods itself is problematic. When disaster-affected individual A receives a $500 domestically made warm jacket, and disaster-affected individual B receives an $8,500 Canada Goose jacket, how do you distribute them? Simply saying “Why not?” is enough to spark conflicts.

Moreover, the idea of having the receiving end conduct auctions is absurd. They would need to allocate manpower and organize auction events, and by the time they receive the money and purchase goods to distribute, the disaster-affected people may have already prepared for the Chinese New Year.

Remove All Branding Before Distribution

If possible, remove all brand labels before distributing the items. Without the branding, they should be valued at a maximum of $500 per piece.

Exclusive Perspective on the Canada Goose Relief Donation

By Zong Wei

Recently, a screenshot circulating on social media appeared to show someone selling “Canada Goose down jackets for disaster relief in Gansu” on Xianyu, a popular online marketplace.

The idea of relief supplies being resold raised concerns among many netizens about the 2000 Canada Goose down jackets and cold-weather items donated on December 21st.

After attracting public attention, a staff member of the Jishishan County Earthquake Relief and Rescue Command stated that these supplies had safely arrived in a township under Jishishan County and were being studied for proper distribution. The staff member emphasized that relief supplies were being monitored and tracked by the County Commission for Discipline Inspection, and there was “no issue of reselling supplies.”

The head of the Shanghai Charity Foundation’s Material Center also stated that all 2001 Canada Goose down jackets had been delivered to Gansu and that there were no issues with the quantity. Xianyu also quickly responded, stating that the actual situation was a user trying to drive traffic by fabricating news of selling disaster relief supplies. The platform had taken down the products and permanently banned the account.

A search on Xianyu showed that the relevant information was indeed no longer visible. However, this did not completely quell the controversy, as many netizens continued to worry that even if Canada Goose’s donated supplies were not resold, they might not reach the disaster victims.

Some referred to a line from the TV series “Iron Teeth Bronze Teeth Ji Xiaolan,” where Heshen educates Ji Xiaolan, saying, “If we don’t mix some sand in with the relief porridge, can it reach the mouths of the disaster victims?”

In the public’s perception, Canada Goose jackets typically cost over ten thousand yuan and can be considered luxury items. However, the distribution of relief supplies involves many personnel and processes. Who can guarantee that someone with ulterior motives won’t intercept them at some stage or take back the items after giving them to disaster victims?

A quick search of past news reveals that irregularities in the distribution of relief supplies are not uncommon. Given this, many netizens argued that Canada Goose’s donation of high-priced down jackets was not wise. It could easily lead to trouble and might not meet the actual needs. Cheaper down jackets and military coats in larger quantities might be more useful in the current severe cold conditions in Jishishan.

Some netizens even offered suggestions, such as selling the Canada Goose jackets and using the funds to buy more affordable down jackets from other brands. Others suspected the brand’s motives, speculating that they were using the donation for marketing purposes rather than genuinely trying to do a good deed.

These viewpoints may seem reasonable on the surface but do not hold up under scrutiny. Leaving aside the question of whether a company should donate money or supplies (which is the company’s prerogative), the choice between the two has its considerations.

It’s well-known that the disaster-stricken area is facing severe cold, and there is a high demand for down jackets. Even if Canada Goose donated money directly, local authorities would still have to use that money to purchase clothing and blankets. This would add an extra step and potential risks to the process.

Furthermore, for a company, liquid assets are precious, and suddenly releasing millions of dollars in cash could impact its operations. Therefore, relief efforts often focus on donating physical items. Some suggested that Canada Goose could have discounted the down jackets for fundraising, but now that they have donated clothing, there are still doubts about their motivations.

In fact, it’s not just Canada Goose that donated down jackets; other downwear companies like Bosideng and Tanboer also made similar donations. In the face of disasters, the commercial value of down jackets is not the most important consideration. What matters is their utility and how they can genuinely help disaster victims. Emphasizing the high price of the jackets at this time only narrows the perspective.

Looking at the bigger picture, it doesn’t really matter what Canada Goose donated. As long as they ensure fair and transparent distribution, open to public scrutiny, even if only a small portion of the population benefits, it will be a positive story. To reassure the public, relief agencies can prioritize distribution to the worst-affected villages and towns, closely monitor the distribution process, and make all the information publicly available on their official websites.

With so many watchful eyes, one can believe that the company’s good intentions will not be in vain, and the down jackets will reach the disaster victims who truly need them.

Canada Goose’s donation of down jackets for disaster relief being resold? Public and transparent distribution is the key to putting people at ease. - Materials - Jishishan - Disaster Victims

On the Expected and Unfortunate Turn of Events

About this incident, it doesn’t feel surprising at all. In fact, many people might say it was inevitable.

When Canada Goose announced its donation of down jackets and cold-weather supplies, I remember someone on my social media shared this little story:

In the TV series “Iron Teeth Bronze Teeth Ji Xiaolan,” Season 1, Episode 8: To prevent corruption involving disaster relief funds and cases of people posing as disaster victims to receive aid, officials who were parachuted in came up with an idea - they added bran to the disaster relief grains. Because of the added bran, the quality of the rice and grains didn’t look good, so it didn’t attract some people’s attention. Eventually, the disaster relief grains were successfully distributed to the victims.

This story is fictional, but the person who shared it was quite “wise.” The implication in my social media feed was that using “luxury items” for disaster relief was not a good idea; it could lead to problems. At that time, news of reselling had not yet emerged.

Now it seems that human nature is almost predictable. However, the “bluntness” of the business’s promotion strategy is also frustrating.

Hopefully, various brands can approach disaster relief with fewer ulterior motives and contribute more practically. Your promotional impact from those “down jackets” may not turn out as positively as you hope; often, it has the opposite effect.