Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
ModCloth has always been on the forefront of inclusivity. The retailer dropped the term "plus size" from its site last year, signed an anti-retouching pledge in 2014, and its ads and imagery make a point of including women of all shapes and sizes.
So for this year's swim campaign, ModCloth's co-founder and chief creative officer Susan Gregg Koger got even more inclusive. The shoot features 13 female entrepreneurs, ModCloth shoppers, models, employees, and past campaign stars.
ModCloth is also unveiling a video series called Hot Tub Roundtable, in which Koger chats with inspiring women about their lives and careers while in a hot tub — because hot tub talk is real talk.
In the very first episode, Koger gathers entrepreneurs to talk about dealing with both positive and negative feedback online. Because internet trolls can be so evil, we asked Koger if she ever feels worried about exposing the women in swimsuits in ModCloth shoots to online meanness.
Here's her thoughtful answer on how ModCloth is thinking it all through:
It's something we always think about when we're working with our community members, with our models, when we're out there. I think if we want the conversation to change, we have to be part of it. I think getting the incredible message of women supporting other women and body positivity is worth it.It's hard to be out there on the Internet and it's something that we talk about. I do think it's an important conversation to have. A lot of this deals with that people are trying to shame you for existing, shame you for doing the things that you love to do. Shame comes from secrecy and holding stuff in, and when you talk about it, it loses its power.
I think it's an important skill that everyone has to learn because we all live on the Internet today. No one is immune from anonymous meanness. As a human navigating the world you have to learn these skills of who to trust and who to actually take feedback from, and who to just totally ignore. It's hard to do but the more that we talk about it the less power it has.
Check out the first installment of Hot Tub Round Table, featuring Micki Krimmel, roller derby star and founder of activewear brand Superfit Hero; Amina Muccilio of part decor Studio Mucci; and Samantha Kuntz, founder of vintage app Whurl.