I have a bit of a distaste hierarchy when it comes to made-in-China stuff. Are you a Chinese company, using your own brand and forthrightly discussing Chinese production? Then maybe we can do business — this article is being written on a Lenovo Y900. Are you an American company that makes some of your products in China, clearly labeling them as such? Okay, Pelican and SILCA… let’s give it a shot (although I just had an unpleasant experience with a Chinese SILCA product, more on that in the near future). Do you obscure the place of production in favor of long bullshit rants about American design and sustainability and being a force for good? Sorry, Patagonia, you can fuck off.
Ah, but there’s a level of Chinese obfuscation even below that of Patagonia et al — the level where you claim to make things in Western countries, or in Japan, only to send me Chinese products when I order them.
I’m not buying as much from Massdrop as I used to. They moved to a new referral system and caused 36 of my referral credits to effectively vanish in the process. More and more of their products are sourced directly from China, often under the guise of being Western brands like Boker. Still, every once in a while I see something they have that might work for me. Their Richer Poorer No Show sock drop seemed like a good idea. There was no country of origin mentioned so I looked on the Internet and read their sourcing information. USA, Korea, and Japan were the choices. So I ordered.
Well, if I’d bothered to look at the previous Massdrop I would have seen an explicit statement that these were made in China. Unfortunately for me, someone China-washed the newest iteration of the drop text. When the socks arrived, they boasted “Designed in California” on the packaging AND on the socks. What the socks don’t say: Made In China. For that, you have to consult the micro-sized text on the back of the bottom of the cardboard holding the socks together.
Not only are these made in China, they’re made of garbage fabric and they don’t work worth a damn. Avoid at all costs. Not recommended.