A shop on one of Turkey’s leading e-commerce sites, Trendyol, drew massive public anger for commercializing grief after it began selling mugs bearing a drawing of a heroic act in the wake of a 6.6-magntitude earthquake that hit the western province of İzmir last week.
The mugs bear the sketch of a three-year-old girl, Elif, holding on to her rescuer’s thumb after being rescued from the rubble 65 hours after the quake, with a writing that said: “Never lose your hope.”
Twitter users strongly criticized the account Hediyehanem, with one saying, “So, capitalism beat humanity?”
As anger against the mugs mounted, which were being sold for prices between 40.90 and 61.90 Turkish Liras ($4,8 and $7.3), Trendyol stepped in to save face.
“Thank you for the feedbacks and your sensitivity. We completely share your sensitivity. The account has been warned and the products have removed from sale,” said an official from Trendyol.
After banning the account from selling the mugs, Trendyol made a second statement.
“It is unacceptable for us to keep such products for sale. We immediately removed them.”
Hurriyet Daily News