Sneaker leaks have plagued the industry since man first discovered fire (’fits). Just last month, Nike SB called out prodigious leakers @prvt.selection and @masterchefian for sharing images of the upcoming Crenshaw Skate Club collaboration.
‘Imagine getting the opportunity to create a dunk only to have an account named masterchefian leak it with no context to the story,’ Nike SB commented.
So how do you stop a leaky faucet? Bring a wrench.
Introducing: Sneaker Freaker’s ultimate guide to stopping sneaker leaks.
What Happens in Beaverton Stays in Beaverton
The only way to prevent leaks is to stop them at the source. For too long, brands have been getting lost in the sauce of year-on-year profits by offshoring their production to faraway lands with minimal supervision. It’s this lack of surveillance that’s allowed sensitive information to leak out, so the most watertight way to retain intel is to keep things in-house.
Move production back to company headquarters and build mega complexes to keep all product and staff under one roof. Remove all windows and natural light to lower external distractions, raise morale and, most importantly, bring leaks to zero. Only totalitarian rule and the threat of severe punishment will ensure embargo dates are adhered to and respected.
Don’t Encourage Excitement for Upcoming Product. Detest it.
The basis, or motivation if you will, for a sneaker leak is the presumption or educated guess that there are people out there who are living in anticipation of your shoes. There’s nothing like that hit of dopamine you get when you see a horrendously shot photograph, most likely blurry and poorly lit, which also confirms the existence of said shoe. So one of the keys to stopping sneaker leaks is to ignite a major vibe shift. Instead of encouraging excitement around your product, detest it. Don’t celebrate your legacy, your latest product; don’t even bother giving it the launch it deserves. Your customers can’t be excited about a sneaker leak if they don’t give a shit in the first place.
Take Images Crisper than the James Webb Telescope
Nothing springs a leak like shitty images. So why not do the opposite? Completely flood social media with high-end, crisp photographs of whatever the hell NASA is using to take infrared images of our universe.
Think sultry images of laces overhanging free-flowing waterfalls, detailed undressings of insoles, and microscopic close-ups so intense you can see entire ecosystems living in the leather uppers.
When the eye-watering, TMZ-style pap photos arrive, sneakerheads will invariably diagnose them as illegitimate, and the leak will get screwed harder than Tom Wambsgans.
Yes, you may technically be leaking your own shoe (read: teaser), but at least you’re controlling the narrative! In other words: stop sitting on your releases and drop the damn shoe. The longer you wait, the more opportunity for leaks...
Close the Backdoor
This one may seem obvious, but sometimes you just have to slam that backdoor shut. Second cousins from Scotland, old food tech teachers, some kid that stole your bike in ninth grade – everyone comes out of the woodwork for a sneaker release. Now, unless you want the sordid headlines, put a hefty deadlock on that revolving door!
For more unsolicited advice, read up on how not to get sued by Nike.