How Action Bronson and New Balance Are Making Their Sneaker Releases Fairer

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Scoring a limited-edition sneaker collaboration these days may be harder than ever. Not only is the subculture of footwear collecting becoming more mainstream, but resellers have also swooped in looking to make a quick buck. Often, some of the other “shoppers” you’re contending with aren’t even actual people, but scripted computer bots created to purchase the shoes the moment they appear on the website. It’s not a new problem, but it is one that persists, and rapper Action Bronson is taking steps to try to make the launch of his latest New Balance collaborations as fair as possible. Here’s how.

Action Bronson’s New Balance 1906R “Rosewater” collaboration, the first of three 1906R styles from the rapper, was released May 31 on his website. The launch was anything but smooth: the stock was fully sold through prior to the announced 11 a.m. EST drop, and fans on social media filled the rapper’s comments with complaints. Rather than ignore the vitriol, Action Bronson’s team appears to have taken the criticism as constructive, introducing a new release method for the most recent drop.

On Friday, June 7, the Action Bronson x New Balance 1906R “Scorpius” released via, a one-off website hosted specifically for this colorway. “They are too limited to release to the public in any fair capacity,” the rapper said of the collaboration on Instagram. He instructed followers to keep an eye on their emails, where select fans who had made prior purchases from his site received whitelisted access. To add another layer of protection, the site also required shoppers to purchase a $120 crewneck sweatshirt in order to access adult sizes of the sneakers.

Action Bronson x New Balance 1906R “Scorpius.” Credit: Action Bronson
Action Bronson x New Balance 1906R “Scorpius.” Credit: Action Bronson

While it’s impossible to make everyone happy — especially when it comes to making enough pairs of sneakers — the response to the “Scorpius” release method was met with appreciation from many fans. With a third and final release on the way, the Action Bronson x New Balance 1906R “Medusa Azul,” it sounds like there are more plans in place to make things go smoothly.

“The drops aren’t perfect but I am doing by best to make everything betrer [sic]…I can assure you I have made the proper adjustments to ensure the next drop ‘Medusa Azul’ will be smoother,” he wrote Sunday on X.

The Action Bronson x New Balance 1906R “Medusa Azul” is expected to launch on Friday, June 14 for a retail price of $185.

Action Bronson x New Balance 1906R “Medusa Azul.” Credit: Action Bronson
Action Bronson x New Balance 1906R “Medusa Azul.” Credit: Action Bronson

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