The managing editor of The Business of Fashion Vikram Alexei Kansara wrote a story today about how an open source project called Sourcemap could impact the the high-end fashion industry, among others.
Sourcemap is an MIT Media Lab project created by Leo Bonanni. The purpose of the project is to track where products and source materials come from. While a Louis Vuitton purse may cost $2,330, it’s not necessarily handmade by European artisans in France as their ads suggest.
“Indeed, earlier this year,” Kansara reported, “the UK’s Advertising Standards Agency banned two Louis Vuitton ads for misleading the public into thinking that the predominantly machine-made bags were handcrafted by European artisans.”
And that’s where Sourcemap comes into play.
“We believe,” the Sourcemap Web site states, “that people have the right to know where things come from and what they are made of.”
And according to Kansara, “As this kind of technology goes mainstream and we advance towards a radically transparent marketplace in which consumers come to expect products that carry and communicate data about their pasts, it’s clear that luxury companies will face increasing pressure to be more transparent about the provenance of their products too.”