“The future is private”
- Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook
Even the infamous Mark Zuckerberg has accepted that social media has changed the way we view privacy. Once a leading proponent of the movement to share as much information as possible online, Zuckerberg recently proclaimed that the future of social media is much more intimate.
Right now, though, social media is anything but intimate. On a day to day basis, it’s almost impossible to maintain a low profile and avoid being photographed and later tagged in unwanted photos online. With 1.8 billion+ photos being shared daily, and 3.4 billion social media users, both consensual and non-consensual photos are constantly being taken.
Until recently, celebrities and influencers famously struggled with the paparazzi taking unwanted pictures of them on a regular basis, some even fighting with paparazzi dangerously. Princess Diana was tragically killed trying to escape the paparazzi. But what was once a problem experienced only by the top 1% of the world, now is being experienced by almost everyone around the world, even people that try to avoid social media entirely. We all have that one friend that doesn’t use social media platforms, but still ends up in pictures posted online, whether they like it or not.
Today, companies, schools, journalists and more, research social media profiles as part of a deeper dive into a person’s life. Specific standards have even been created at some organizations, and if you don’t meet those standards, you might lose out on a job or admission to college. As we all have experienced in one way or another, this has a huge impact on personal brand and even professional reputation.
That’s where we come in.
ISHU produces fashion with a purpose: clothing and accessories with built-in nanotechnology designed to reflect camera flash and subsequently black out their photos, making the subject invisible. From phone cases to T-shirts to jackets and bags, ISHU lets you take back control of your privacy simply through your fashion choices.
It’s February in 2016. Saif Siddiqui, Founder and CEO of ISHU, looks down at his caller ID as his phone buzzes. It’s Cameron Diaz. She’s calling to tell him how incredible his new “Anti-Paparazzi” Scarf is. She loves it.
What brought Siddiqui to this exciting moment in his career was a unique opportunity that many people would kill for. He worked closely with a wide range of celebrities, athletes, models, and other high profile influencers on commercial and sponsorship deals. Through years of this work, Siddiqui discovered that despite how much financial and public access they had, the top 1% of the population all struggled with the same issue: their privacy. Because these high profile influencers are constantly in the public eye, maintaining their own confidentiality is a challenge.
In January of 2016, after years of creative development and direct exposure to the high profile and luxury markets, Siddiqui founded ISHU and launched its first commercially available product-innovation. The anti-flash scarf, also known as the “Anti-Paparazzi Scarf” blacks out pictures and videos taken with flash. This allows its wearers to deflect unwanted attention.
Following its launch at Soho House in Toronto, ISHU was a hit with numerous celebrities and influencers around the world. The anti-flash scarf gained instant recognition globally through major fashion and technology publications. ISHU went viral online, reaching over 1.2 billion people within the first 3 months of launching its first product, and sold directly to the 1% high profile influencers. The media and celebrity exposure generated high demand, but ISHU kept the brand exclusive and sold in limited numbers to select customers only.
Now that we know there is a market for ISHU products (celebrity success being our proof point), we’ve made the conscious decision to release our lifestyle vision to the masses.
While Zuckerberg works on a master plan to privatize the social media experience in the not-so-near future, right now, ISHU empowers everyone to protect themselves against privacy intrusion. Use your ISHU fashion technology decide whether or not you show up in photos online, make it your choice to share important hidden messages, and have the freedom to harness the power of the sun to charge your essential devices without anyone knowing. Choose to be invisible.
The Verge. "Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says the ‘future is private’". April 30, 2019. URL: https://www.theverge.com/2019/4/30/18524188/facebook-f8-keynote-mark-zuckerberg-privacy-future-2019