Allie Fritsch

Assignment 3-Crisis Management

Right away, I thought of the brand Wayfair. They are an online store, that sells home goods for a better price than most stores. Recently there has been a lot of controversy surrounding their website. Conspiracy theories started going around on social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok, that Wayfair was partaking in child trafficking. There were items like pillows and cabinets listed for insanely high prices, which were assumed to be a cover listing. The items were also listed under missing children’s names. “Samiyah” was one of the names listed for a product.

People started acting like detectives on social media and were posting screenshot after screenshot of the high-priced items. I am not going to lie, I fell into the trap and started looking the information up to see if it was real or not. But many people did not do that and continued to post about Wayfair’s part in child trafficking.

Wayfair came out and denied the allegations immediately. They started off by denying the claim and then proceeded to explain their pricing algorithm and how some items get jacked up due to their algorithm. Wayfair also explained that some of the products that were listed as examples were industrial grade cabinets, making the price comparable to other stores. Many critics did not accept their denial to the allegations, so Wayfair decided to temporarily removed some of the listed products from there website. They will be reposted with a better fitting description and name. Samiyah, the missing girl also came out on Facebook Live saying she was not missing. She previously was listed as a missing child for four days, but was then found.

I felt that Wayfair handled the situation pretty well. I think they gave the right amount of attention to the issue, but not too much where it could generate more attention. They did end up taking the products down and renaming them with a better description, but I think Wayfair could have explained why they were listed under a missing girls name. Overall, Wayfair approached this crisis head-on and answered the questions people were asking. People ended up forgetting about this and many sources have confirmed that it was all fake.