Walmart withdraws ‘Rope. Tree. Journalist’ t-shirt from sale

Walmart withdraws ‘Rope. Tree. Journalist’ t-shirt from sale

Walmart has withdrawn a menacing t-shirt from sale which apparently advocated the lynching of journalists after a journalist advocacy group complaint about the implicit threat.

Black t-shirt’s bearing the words ‘Rope. Tree. Journalist. Some assembly required’ had been offered for sale via Walmart.com for the sum of $18.99, although the listing was in fact created by Teespring, a third-party commerce platform.

Teespring allows customers to manually create their own t-shirt content for printing, ostensibly with filters and controls in place to prevent malicious messages from slipping through – sytsems which clearly failed in this case.

Commenting on the breach a Teespring spokesperson wrote: “As soon as we were alerted to this content promoting violence against journalists we removed the content, added this content to our automated scanning systems, and kicked off a human sweep of the site to find and remove any similar content.”

Walmart followed up by confirming that the content ‘clearly violates our policy’, adding: “We removed it as soon as it was brought to our attention, and are conducting a thorough review of the seller's assortment.”

This isn’t the first scandal to befall Teespring which found itself in the spotlight over the summer after putting a ‘rainbow Swastika’ up for sale.

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John Glenday

John Glenday is responsible for compiling The Drum's daily morning bulletin and ensuring that overnight breaking news is covered while you're still brushing your teeth. Can also make a mean cup of tea.

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