What’s in a name? Well, a lot if your brand name is Nike and you misspell the name of the ancient Greek Goddess of Victory in your Greek marketplace.
A little research on the Greek alphabet would have saved the world giant a lot of trouble when it launched its highly anticipated version of its Air Force 1 shoe in Greece this week.
The Air Force 1 Winged Goddess features a visual homage to the ancient goddess on the shoe’s elongated tongue. That’s all well and good, until you look at the back of the shoe where Nike has been crafty and introduced its name in ‘Greek’.
Instead of reading as “NIKH” in Greek, it is presented as “PHKS”, or to pronounce the word in English; “Piks” – not Nike or Niki.
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The result is a lot of annoyed Greeks and an online petition calling on Nike to take the new shoe off the market.
Angie Xidias who started the petition on change.org with the words: “CALL TO ACTION!
We ask Nike to retract and recall the Air Force 1 “Goddess of Victory” sneakers from the market. Nike abused the Greek alphabet on the backs of sneakers by distorting the spelling of the Greek goddess NIKH (NIKE).
Currently, sneakers are spelled PIKS and not NIKE – this is cultural appropriation.
We ask Nike to preserve and respect Greek culture and history by accurately using the Greek alphabet when writing and referring to the goddess NIKE.
So far, 100 people have responded to the petition.
As of this writing, Nike had not responded to the case.