We need more brand activism.
Brands can’t and shouldn’t take the place of civil society. But we’re in a world where brands are what get noticed.
“The act of making people think about these issues is a revolutionary act, because no one is talking about it,” says Mike Daisey, playwright and performer of The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs. That “revolutionary act” was a crucial contribution of pioneering labels such as Fairtrade and Energy Star. But as such movements struggle to get noticed amidst the noise, it’s time for brands to take up the cause as well.
Greenpeace used Apple’s social capital to great effect with its 2006 “Green My Apple” campaign. Imagine what Apple could do with its consumer love – and buyer clout – to spur system-wide action on factory labor conditions.