Hobojacket no more
Hobojacket, a website by Jin Pan ’16 and Cathie Yun ’16 dedicated to donating jackets of a rival college to the homeless, has shut down amidst complaints about the ethics of the enterprise. The site, launched on Sunday, quickly went viral and saw coverage on various websites, most of which criticized the actions of Pan and his collaborators for being in poor taste, including Jezebel. The site was taken down and replaced with an apology letter, copied below, sometime Thursday morning. At press time however, a visit to the website reveals a completely different site reporting to sell temperature indicating cups.
I thought I had a clever idea for leveraging existing college rivalries to raise money to provide warm clothing for the homeless.
But I did not actually understand that my gimmick was dependent on objectifying the homeless.
The site’s so-called edgy manner was designed to spread quickly, but I realize now that it also allowed my insensitivity to go viral.
I wish I could rewind time to Sunday and reverse the decision to take the site live.
But time is irreversible and I’ve learned a hard lesson.
I’m sorry that I offended so many, and I’m disappointed in my own lack of judgment.
I’ve matured a lot over the last 3 days in listening to the flood of more mature voices out there.
I especially apologize for using those who can’t as easily speak up for themselves.