Yesterday I came across a post on the Stuff Christians Like site about this new product called Bobs, that’s right, I said Bobs. And no, It’s not a division of Toms, as a matter of fact it’s a complete rip-off. Bobs is a new shoe that’s been been released by Skechers. From the name, to the design and even the cause behind it is identical.
Here is a photo the BOBS shoe from Digital Mom Blog (great site, check out her stuff)
And of course here is a picture of TOMS
See the difference? (neither do I)
When I first saw the post written on Stuff Christians Like I was extremely annoyed. It bothers me to see such a lack of creativity and originality. As I did some more reading and searching online I learned that Skechers has partnered with Soles4Souls, a great organization that’s given away over 10 million pairs of shoes in over 125 countries. Now that’s really cool, so cool in fact that I can actually be a bit more supportive of what Skechers is doing. This has to be a huge opportunity for Soles4Souls as well and I truly hope everything goes well. I just wish they could have been more creative, or rather creative at all, in naming the line of shoes as well the entire design of the shoe itself. I haven’t been able to find any more information about Bobs so far. They’re not mentioned on the Skechers site of the Soles4Souls site, but I’m sure more information will be released in the near future.
After clearing my head a little bit and putting more thought into this I realized that the good outweighs the bad in this situation. Yes, Skechers completely ripped off Toms in every way possible, but more kids will be getting shoes on their feet, and that’s awesome. I realize how easy it is even as a follower of Christ to instantly look at the negative in a situation over the good. The truth is that people and companies copy each other all the time. Sure, most aren’t as obvious as Bobs, but it happens. That doesn’t justify it whatsoever, but I think it helps us to deal with it and let it go a little easier. Although it’s still very difficult when it’s something you care about, something that started underground and independent of big corporations.
I can’t really imagine that the founder of Toms Shoes is very upset about this though. He seems to be extremely passionate about getting shoes to kids, and though annoyed at the plagiarism of his product, probably very happy that more kids are going to get shoes out of the deal.
Do I hate how badly Skechers ripped off the Toms name and design? YES
Am I happy that there will be less barefoot children in the world? YES
So although my wife and I will stick to Toms and never buy a pair of Bobs, I know something something good can and probably will come of this for people I will never meet. The people who are receiving these shoes don’t care about fashion or the politics of business. They’re happy that they don’t have to walk barefoot on glass and rocks. They’re stoked that they have a pair of shoes period, and that’s humbling.
More posts from around the blogoshpere about Bobs and Toms:
If you blogged about Toms and Bobs and would like to share your link on this post please send it to me through the comment section and I will add it to the the above list, thanks.