Nike Pulls "Boston Massacre" T-Shirts

A "Boston Massacre" T-shirt showing splattered blood stains will mean only one thing to people now: the bombing tragedy at the Boston Marathon. But this Nike T-shirt is a reference to the Red Sox/Yankees baseball games in 1978 and 2006. 

Still, some people feel the T-shirts should have been removed from the outlet store before being spied (and photographed) by a producer for the "David Letterman Show."

Boston T-shirt

A Nike spokesperson emailed a response to the Huffington Post:

"The shirts being referenced are older baseball shirts that were predominantly being sold through our Factory Stores Outlets. In light of the tragedy in Boston we took immediate action last week to remove this product from distribution. We conducted this process as quickly as possible and are confident the product has been removed from distribution."

The situation is reminiscent of Nike T-shirts in a Boston store window sporting slogans such as "Dope" and "Get High." In this situation, the mayor of Boston wrote a complaint letter, but the company denied that it promoted drug use. 

Discussion Starters:

  • In what ways does the "Boston Massacre" T-shirt differ from the "Dope" and "Get High" T-shirts? How are they similar?
  • How do you assess Nike's response? Should the company have done anything differently, or is this an understandable mistake?