The nice guy campaign

A few years ago my mate Jess Cameron-Wootten started making shoes. He got good at it – ridiculously good – and now he makes them (and other staggeringly brilliant things made from leather) for a living out of a shop called Wootten.

This, I promise, is not a shameless commercial plug. This is a classic Haught campaign involving the forces of good versus the forces of bitchy.

You see, Jess is the epitome of the nice guy. I can’t think of a better bloke I’ve ever met, and I once met myself (admittedly it was in a weird dream involving a dinner party hosted by a giant talking jar of Rosella pickle relish).

Recently, he made it through to the round of 10 in the The Modern Craft Project, a competition celebrating all things non-mass produced. To determine the winner, the people in charge have got some expert judges involved, but have also included a people’s choice component. Jess’ success in this latter category (so far) seems to have raised the ire of one of his competitors, a surfboard maker (of some substantial talent, it would appear).

On a surfboard web forum called Swaylock’s, the following conversation has taken place:

600 votes for a shoemaker?, damn, the foot fetish freaks are hardcore!!. Voted again, you’re second now josh. Did you mention this on Facebook???

Yeah beery I’m disgusted. I guess I just don’t hang with the right crowd. Y’know, I could be tweeting away over a latte…

Soy decaf I hope. Maybe you should post a pic of you with a cardigan, an old beret and a man bag. Then you might get the hipsters goin nuts. Oh and don’t forget in your bio to mention you only eat organic vegan food

What happened to the craft industry fraternity? What happened to a little bit of solidarity among the ever-diminishing group of people who put care into what they create? What happened to friendly rivalry?

Without this pettiness and casual anti-cardiganism, I would have kept my mega-powerful nose out of this stoush. But they had to get a bit catty.

True, they haven’t stooped to Kyle Sandilands, Alan Jones or Department of Transport levels. The problem I have, though, is that Jess would never have said anything like that about other creative people.

Now you can help demonstrate to them that a little bit of magnanimity goes a long long way.

This link takes you to the part of The Modern Craft Project website where you can vote for Jess.

Whether you like the idea of nice guys finishing first, have ever worn a cardigan or an old beret (what? That one didn’t even make sense), identify as a foot fetish freak or have ever drunk a cafe latte, soy or otherwise, I implore you to VOTE NOW!


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