Taiwanese chain RT-Mart under fire for blatant fat-shaming in China

The sign, which appeared in an RT-Mart store, listed out the different heights and weights associated with each clothing size along with an adjective to describe it.
PHOTO: Wikimedia

TAIPEI  — A women’s clothing size recommendation chart at an RT-Mart store in China recently called size L “lame” and the size-XXL “lame to the core,” prompting a public outcry for the company’s blatant fat-shaming.

The Taiwanese chain store’s China division immediately issued an apology on Tuesday (Nov 17), but social media users are still furious and are threatening to boycott the company, making it the “top search” for related news.

In a photo posted on Weibo, the chart showed that size “S” is deemed “slim”, “M” is “beautiful”, “L” is “lame”, “XL” is “extra lame” and “XXL” is “lame to the core.”

PHOTO: Weibo/wendybeibei

The chart also emphasised that the sizing guide was “only for women aged 18 - 35” and added, “depending on your size, please consult customer service first.”

The photo immediately went viral online, with social media users criticising the poor wording for promoting body- and age-related anxieties and for objectifying women by defining them by their size.

A day after the incident, China’s RT-Mart released an official statement on Weibo, apologising for the inappropriate wording, which had caused public discomfort.

The statement also said that after the incident, RT-Mart immediately and thoroughly investigated all its stores and confirmed that only one store displayed this type of placard.

It assured the public that the head office had quickly asked the store to remove the problematic sign.

In response to this incident, RT-Mart vowed to strengthen its internal management to ensure that such incidents will not occur again.

Despite RT-Mart’s apology, enraged social media users have continued to leave comments on Weibo, re-posting pictures and threatening to boycott the store.