Any fashion lover is probably familiar with the iconic Instagram Diet Prada, which is known for holding the world of couture accountable for plagiarism, racism, and more.
The blog was founded by Tony Liu and Lindsey Schuyler, who recently revealed they have been battling a lawsuit from Dolce & Gabbana since 2019, and the controversial Italian fashion house is seeking $600 million in damages.
Read on for everything we know about the lawsuit and why it was filed in the first place.
So, why is Dolce & Gabbana suing Diet Prada?
In November 2018, Dolce & Gabbana canceled its Shanghai fashion show after social media users accused the brand of racism. The campaign, which used the hashtag #DGLovesChina, included a since-deleted ad in which a Chinese woman attempts to eat Italian food with chopsticks.
Diet Prada posted the ad, and a series of anti-Asian remarks were reportedly sent from Stefano Gabbana's Instagram account. Their coverage of the ensuing chaos is still on their Instagram page, in their Stories under #DGTheS--tShow.
Shortly after Diet Prada posted, Dolce & Gabbana filed an action suit against Diet Prada’s founders in civil court in Milan. The company filed with accusations of defamation and demands of €3 million in damages for Dolce & Gabbana and €1 million for Stefano Gabbana, who initially claimed his Instagram was hacked.
However, more recently, the fashion house is reportedly seeking €450 million to “restore brand image since 2018” as well as €8.6 million for staff expenditure, another €8.6 million for the cancellation of the Shanghai show, €89.6 million for lost sales in Asia.
In March 2021, Tony and Lindsay responded by filing a defense of their freedom of speech. Diet Prada sent part of the Dolce & Gabbana suit to The Cut, who reported that the suit alleged Diet Prada's coverage of their campaign led to the brand losing revenue and other harm.
Tony and Lindsay wrote separate statements also provided by The Cut in response to Dolce & Gabbana's lawsuit.
Tony's statement touched on his identity and experiences as an Asian-American man and as a queer person of color living in a predominantly white town. He explains that Diet Prada has always been a platform where BIPOC are brought to the forefront. Tony also notes that the lawsuit arrived during a time when Donald Trump's xenophobia fueled more anti-Asian rhetoric and that Diet Prada would remain a platform that "speaks truth to power."
Lindsey Schuyler wrote her own statement that reiterated Tony's sentiments and added her disgust at the "caricatures of China and Chinese people, but also by the misogynistic images associated with them" that Dolce & Gabbana's ad campaign created.
She said it was important that media outlets could speak out about issues such as misogyny and racism without being denounced as "fake news."
Lindsey's final sentence of her statement read, "Now is the time for public figures and brands to respond to public opinion and media critiques with progressive action, not lawsuits." Currently, the pair is being represented by the nonprofit Fashion Law Institute at Fordham pro bono, in collaboration with Italian law firm AMSL Avvocati.
Diet Prada has also created a GoFundMe to cover their legal expenses.
A statement from Professor Susan Scafidi, founder and director of the Fashion Law Institute, read, "We are confident that Diet Prada is on the right side of both law and history. And we are honored to help them demonstrate that harmful stereotypes are never in style."
At this time, the lawsuit has not yet been resolved.