I am very pleased to reblog Elisabeth Cramer’s excellent post “Drowning in Pink” with her kind permission. Elisabeth does a wonderful job of summarizing the story of how the current Kohl’s-Komen campaign has co-opted Metavivor’s tag and theme without permission. Please check out Elisabeth’s blog Pugtato: Adventures in Creativity and Teamwork. Thank you for writing this post, Elisabeth, and thank you for allowing me to run it.
I encourage everyone to visit the Metavivor site to learn more about metastatic (stage 4) breast cancer and how you can help.
METAvivor was created during a time when there were ZERO patient advocacy groups helping to give metastatic patients a voice and ZERO organizations dedicating funding for stage IV research. Currently 30% of breast cancer patients develop metastatic disease. 30%. Guess how much funding via breast cancer research is funneled their way? 2%. Yep, 2%. It’s abysmal. I encourage you to visit METAvivor’s (beautifully designed) website and learn more. You might be surprised to learn that metastatic patients can live for many years with their disease. Through research and advocacy the goal is to preserve quality of life and manage disease for these patients.
So what’s the beef with Kohl’s and Susan G. Komen?
Kohl’s and Susan G. Komen essentially ripped off one of METAvivor’s advocacy campaigns, “Elephant in the Pink Room,” refuses to admit it, and didn’t even correctly interpret the goal of “Elephant in the Pink Room.” In fact, they got it backwards. The goal of “Elephant in the Pink Room” was to shed light on the fact that metastatic patients are left out of the pink movement. There is no cure for metastatic disease and there is very little research dedicated to metastatic disease. Pink campaigns that are “fun” and “exciting” do very little to highlight the reality that 30% of breast cancer patients will find themselves part of the metastatic patient family. Its something no one wants to talk about on their cheery, pink awareness campaigns.
Kohl’s instead missed the point and says “It’s the pink elephant in the room.” FAIL. The point of METAvivor’s campaign is to point out that metastatic patients often feel like the elephant in the room, not that breast cancer is the elephant in the room. Let’s get real, at this point, awareness of breast cancer is not the problem. You could easily argue that breast cancer is the most publicized, well-known cancer out there. To go even farther in demonstration of the fact that they don’t understand that PINK is not the answer, Kohl’s then turned their logo and twitter page pink. Pink does not save lives. Research, advocacy and medicine save lives.
To check out the blatant rip off of Metavivor’s campaign by Kohl’s please visit Nancy’s Point: a Blog about Breast Cancer and Loss. Here you can see the images of Metavivor’s campaign and Kohl’s campaign.
Kohl’s/SGK are using a well-known successful advocacy campaign to make a profit and at the same time making a mockery of what Metavivor has worked so hard to achieve. Please visit METAvivor’s blog where you can read exactly what is transpiring and how Kohl’s/SGK are unwilling to remove the elephant image used in their campaign and the messaging they stole from METAvivor. Through social media, patients and advocates are asking for your support to have the campaign stopped. Are you on twitter? Tweet Kohl’s and SGK’s hashtag #TalkPink and tell them what you think. Have a blog? Share this story.