Protecting the environment with intelligence

Yahoo! stays silent as whaling protests get ever louder

It’s been a busy and exhilarating week for EIA’s cetaceans team since last Friday when we rolled out the second phase of our ongoing campaign to persuade Yahoo! to stop profiting from the sale of whale and dolphin meat via Yahoo! Japan.

We asked supporters to visit our Action Alerts page and use email, Facebook and Twitter to put pressure on the company and its recently appointed CEO Marissa Mayer to do the right thing.

Our rallying call met with astonishing success as thousands of people and organisations around the world answered the call and got directly involved. In less than a week, our news alerts and updates on Facebook had received scores of comments and hundreds of shares, and our Tweets on the issue were reTweeted to hundreds of thousands of people around the world, demonstrating the immediacy and vitality of social media as a key form of campaigning.

 

In the midst of the fresh wave of action against the internet giant profiting from the slaughter of endangered species, Yahoo! itself blundered badly on Saturday when it hypocritically posted a cute item on its official Facebook page about a rare white humpback whale spotted off Norway and invited its 10 million+ followers to suggest names for it – giving protestors an ideal forum in which to vent their outrage.

And protest you did – the post was effectively swamped with hundreds of angry messages, with many individuals warning that they were closing down their Yahoo! accounts and emails.

Yahoo!’s response? Silence.

EIA first launched its Yahoo! campaign in June this year, directing protests against the company and at then-CEO Ross Levinsohn, urging senior management to take meaningful action against the Japanese subsidiary in which it has a massive stake.

The company’s only response at that time was to issue a statement to the media to the effect that it did not allow the sale of dolphin, whale and elephant products in the countries in which it operates, including the United States and Europe.

“As Yahoo! is only a minority shareholder in Yahoo! Japan, however, we cannot unilaterally impose corporate policies on Yahoo! Japan. Any questions about Yahoo! Japan’s business should be directed to them,” it stated.

True, Yahoo! is only a minority shareholder in Yahoo! Japan – but with a 34.74 per cent stake, it is second only to top shareholder Softbank Corp, which has a 35.44 per cent holding.

This kind of corporate buck-passing is just not good enough.

A whale and calf being loaded aboard a factory ship, the Nisshin Maru (c) Customs and Border Protection Service, Commonwealth of Australia

As the second biggest shareholder in the Japanese firm, Yahoo! is more than capable of formally proposing a change in policy to ban all cetacean products; its refusal to do so can only be interpreted as a serious failure of will and, perhaps, a desire to avoid a potentially embarrassing spat in front of other shareholders.

So that’s it, then? Yahoo! feels that, despite the serious financial clout it wields, doing nothing meaningful to change the policy of Yahoo! Japan is good enough and it’s happy to continue banking what profits accrue to it from the sales of whale and dolphin meat?

Compare and contrast Yahoo!’s bid to duck the issue and stonewall critics with that of Amazon – when EIA exposed Amazon’s sales of cetacean products via its wholly owned subsidiary Amazon Japan in February, the company took down all such products within 24 hours and subsequently banned them for keeps. Since then it has demonstrated its commitment and vigilance to the new policy by promptly removing any cetacean products that slip through the net.

In fairness to Yahoo!, such a direct action is not available to it – but choosing to do nothing is irresponsible and unacceptable.

Does it honestly imagine people will stop caring, or that its indirect support of Japan’s crumbling yet lethal whaling industry won’t seriously harm its public image?

Does it really think its ongoing silence will be met with anything other than loud anger so long as it keeps lining its pockets with blood money?

 

Paul Newman, Press OfficerPaul Newman
Press & Communications Officer

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8 Responses

  1. toshio yashiro says:

    Dear,Mr,Paul Newman
    Press & Communications Officer

    Now’s the time !!

    Hi,
    you are the man !
    I am impressed very much by your action. The feeling of this gratitude cannot be expressed with words.
    You are shaking “3rd stone from the sun” truly !!

    The relation between yahoo japan, yahoo inc, and softbank is very complicated. I think that a risk and responsibility are probably avoided by subdividing shareholding.

    with a 34.74 per cent stake, (Now, the indication was refused. )

    Mr,masayoshi son
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masayoshi_Son

    He is the chairman of Yahoo! Japan
    He is the president of softbank.
    He was the largest stockholder of yahoo. inc.
    (He made big investment at the time of yahoo.inc commencement of business. )
    softbank and yahoo. inc hold the stock of yahoo Japan 70%.

    “As Yahoo! is only a minority shareholder in Yahoo! Japan, however, we cannot unilaterally impose corporate policies on Yahoo! Japan. Any questions about Yahoo! Japan’s business should be directed to them,” it stated.

    ok! so,Let’s ask Mr,masayoshi son.
    He surely has the decisive power of whale meat sale.

    He is a user of a Twitter and Facebook.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Masayoshi_Son
    http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%AD%AB%E6%AD%A3%E7%BE%A9

    He graduated from University of California at Berkeley in 1980.
    A degree is a university graduate (economics). Therefore, he can receive in English.

    He loves exchange of opinions with people very much. He loves talking with people by Twitter.
    Everybody knows.

    We got the greatest chance for which yahoo japan stops selling whale meat .
    Why ?
    Because Softbank purchased Sprint Nextel as a matter of fact the other day. He made the base of the U.S. advance from communication business.
    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/15/us-sprint-fcc-idUSBRE8AE1WQ20121115

    The U.S. media will contact Mr,masayoshi son.
    (npr radio freshair already took him up, introduced his profile. )

    * so, I ask from the bottom of my heart .
    US /UK/EU media should question him about the whale meat sale by Yahoo Japan.

    Since he advanced to the West, he must be scrutinized by European and American morals.

    Now’s the time !!

    thank you.
    Sincerely,

  2. toshio yashiro says:

    Dear,EIA

    I apologize for a severe comment from the bottom of my heart to eia.
    I was excited in order to certainly tell the world. Although eia gave the opportunity to post my comments, I was so rude. I am so sorry.

  3. toshio yashiro says:

    Hi,
    I want to apologize to the world for this situation (whaling Issue) as one of the Japanese. I wish sincerely to express my gratitude for the activity of NGO,NPO and the world.

    This cruel act that is in pain for a long time is never accepted until animals die.

    Then, the method of killing quickly? no way!
    This slaughter is unnecessary.

    http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2012/11/07/Japan-plans-wider-sales-of-whale-meat/UPI-70471352314575/#axzz2D7iaKvUO
    http://www.j-cast.com/2012/11/18153822.html (japanese)

    “Japan’s Fisheries Agency” is equivalent in having accepted as commercial whaling themselves .

    Their theory has whaling first.
    The reasons for affirming all the whalings are attached later.

    They have continued “commercial whaling “for ” research whaling” by the way of excuse for a long time.
    This act is a falsehood to the world .It must be judged by the international standard.

    People understood the theory of Japanese media after the Fukushima nuclear power plant crisis.

    Freedom to report.
    Freedom not to report.

    Japanese media have two Freedoms. Of course, since a whaling issue is a taboo, major media have not reported this news.

    The skillful manipulation of information for turning away one’s national eyes from this slaughter of the Japanese government was possible.However, it is different now for the Internet spread. The Japanese government cannot deceive the world any more.

    Australia accused whaling of this falsehood at the International Court of Justice.
    New Zealand joins Australia in court against Japanese whaling, too. !!!

    http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/23/us-newzealand-whaling-court-idUSBRE8AM02D20121123

    Ms.Julia Eileen Gillard (Prime Minister of Australia)
    Mr. Murray McCully (The Minister of Foreign Affairs New Zealand )

    I sent e-mail of gratitude to them with my theory.
    (” The indication of a whale meat stockpile / Doubt of war preparation ”
    Is these whale meat the stockpiles of emergency, such as war? Japan prepares for” the third World War “and is continuing whaling. )

    *A lot of stockpile is a big proof which shows the non-necessity for whaling more to the world.

    Or is war really prepared?
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    [Composition of whaling industry ]

    MAFF (Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries),
    The Institute of Cetacean Research ICR (Institute of Cetacean Research)
    The Fisheries Association JFA (Japan Fisheries Association).
    *Pro-whaling lobby

    [The coastal whaling in Japan has two kinds of permissions.]

    1) In small whaling, The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries gives permission to each prefecture.
    2) As for a dolphin, each prefecture governor gives permission.
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
    *pro-whaling lobby
    Includes the two ex-presidents Abe Shinzo and Aso Taro and many legislators.
    A possibility that the Liberal Democratic Party of ” Shinzo Abe “will turn into the governing party is high.”Shinzo Abe ”comes from Yamaguchi- prefecture and Yamaguchi-prefecture is a huge whaling promotion prefecture.
    The present governing party was mistaken in the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster processing, also,their policies are China and the South Korean protection too much. and lost people’s trust.
    Anyway, A new national election occurs. A near political party new in the future will turn into the governing party.

    I am going to send Petition e-mail to the government of USA ,EU, UK to support Australia at the International Court of Justice.

    once again, I wish sincerely to express my gratitude for the activity of NGO,NPO and the world.

    thank you.

    Sincerely,

  4. toshio yashiro says:

    Have you erased my other 2 comments?

  5. toshio yashiro says:

    ps

    http://www.j-cast.com/2012/11/18153822.html (japanese)

    it says the stockpile is 4000 t.

  6. toshio yashiro says:

    Hi,

    This slaughter is unnecessary.

    http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2012/11/07/Japan-plans-wider-sales-of-whale-meat/UPI-70471352314575/#axzz2D7iaKvUO (The report of Mainichi Newspapers to overseas is a basis report. )
    http://www.j-cast.com/2012/11/18153822.html (japanese)

    “Japan’s Fisheries Agency” is equivalent in having accepted as commercial whaling themselves .

    Skillful manipulation of information is performed here.
    The stock pile is not indicated for a report for a foreigner (The report of Mainichi Newspapers to overseas is a basis report).
    The stock pile is indicated in the Japanese report.
    http://www.j-cast.com/2012/11/18153822.html (japanese)

    It says, They have a 4000-ton stock pile.

    “Japan’s Fisheries Agency” are releasing a stock pile to the world, and it was afraid for their causing the blame from the world. An official announcement in the world of their huge stock pile is that the unnecessary nature of whaling is shown in the world.

    “Infanticide of a whale” is for protecting the fish which man consumes. They tell a lie to the world.
    Suppose temporarily that their opinion is right.

    However, the world has not entrusted the request of the serious missions to Japan.
    Everyone in the world has not made such a request Japan. The world knows that it is a reason of only own pocket of whaling industry.

    Their theory has whaling first.
    The reasons for affirming all the whaling are attached later.

    japan must be judged by the International Court of Justice.

    Japan got relief (was eased ? ) from the world by the amount of capture of a tuna, and import (Washington Convention) of eel fry.

    It is the turn that Japan stops whaling.

    *A lot of stockpile is a big proof which shows the non-necessity for whaling more to the world.
    Or is war really prepared ?

    Please tell that your country supports Australia in this trial.

    Once again, I wish sincerely to express my gratitude for the activity of NGO,NPO and the world.

    I pray for a victory of Australia at the International Court of Justice.

    thank you.

    Sincerely,

  7. toshio yashiro says:

    http://www.theage.com.au/environment/whale-watch/greenpeace-highlights-woes-of-japanese-whale-meat-industry-20121220-2bpfc.html
    [“Greenpeace highlights woes of Japanese whale meat industry “
    And with the return to power of the Liberal Democratic Party leader, Shinzo Abe, as next prime minister, observers see a strengthened pro-whaling lobby in Tokyo.]

    I have mailed as many “media, environmental groups, and overseas government organizations” as possible for my comment.

    Is it a very big turning point for a whale? A situation gets increasingly bad for them? Possibly it becomes good?

    “Japanese whalers under US justice protection” This was reported with surprise.
    The overwhelming victory of the Liberal Democratic Party was imagined.
    [An International Fund for Animal Welfare global whales campaigner, Patrick Ramage, said after a recent visit to Tokyo that Mr Abe's own electoral base was the whalers' port of Shimonoseki ]
    *”Shinzo Abe ”comes from Yamaguchi- prefecture and Yamaguchi-prefecture is a huge whaling promotion prefecture.( Shimonoseki is a city of the Yamaguchi prefecture. )

    However, the greatest enemy of anti -whaling was in fog until now.
    [Shinzo Abe, as next prime minister, observers see a strengthened pro-whaling lobby in Tokyo.]

    It is becoming famous that Shinzo Abe is the greatest whaling promoter.

    ["Japan's Fisheries Agency" and the government accepted research whaling as commercial whaling themselves from financial difficulties. "In 2009, it increased from 3,096 tonnes to 4,246 tonnes. In 2010, it exceeded 5,000 tonnes, before falling slightly to 4,284 tonnes in 2011" by Sir Ronald Sanders.
    A huge stockpile is a big proof which shows the non-necessity for whaling more to the world. A huge stockpile = "preparation of the third World War" ?
    Why nobody suspects? I do.
    "Although Japan has a 4000-ts stockpile, it continues whaling. " " why ?" "For what ? "
    “Infanticide of a whale” is for protecting the fish which man consumes. They tell a lie to the world. Suppose temporarily that their opinion is right. However, the world has not entrusted the request of the serious missions to Japan. Everyone in the world has not made such a request Japan. They have continued "commercial whaling "for " research whaling" by the way of excuse for a long time. Their theory has whaling first. The reasons for affirming all the whaling are attached later.
    The world knows that it is a reason of only own pocket of “whaling industry “. ] from my comment.

    I am sending “attention” and “cautions” to the world succeedingly.
    I conclude that the reason for firm whaling industrial protection of Japan is “a stockpile for war.”
    This firm protection is unusual.
    The world should look out to this stockpile.! ” why ?” “For what ? ”
    Why nobody suspects? I do.
    While, This doubt from the world will dull the speed of slaughter.
    This is hope.
    This slaughter is unnecessary.

    Happy holiday & Merry Christmas.

    thank you.

    Sincerely,

  8. toshio yashiro says:

    http://www.pacificfreepress.com/opinion/5575-japans-pyrate-whalers-ram-second-sea-shepherd-ship.html
    [Japan's Pyrate Whalers Ram Second Sea Shepherd Ship]

    “The Japanese whalers are far more aggressive this year than in past campaigns.”

    Because,

    1, “Shinzo Abe ” (new prime minister ), comes from Yamaguchi- prefecture and Yamaguchi-prefecture is a huge whaling promotion prefecture.( Shimonoseki is the city of the Yamaguchi
    prefecture. )
    2, “Yoshimasa Hayashi ” (as new minister of agriculture, forestry and fisheries-the position responsible for whaling policy).
    He also comes Yamaguchi -Prefecture.
    3, “Taro Aso ” ( vice Prime Minister minister) is also powerful “pro-whaling lobby.”

    I would like to name this Abe Cabinet the “whaling Cabinet.”
    [Shinzo Abe (new prime minister ), observers see a strengthened pro-whaling lobby in Tokyo.]

    Now It is becoming famous that “Shinzo Abe ” is the greatest whaling promoter.
    His wife advertizes a whale meat hamburger and enjoys a dolphin show.

    “In 2009, it increased from 3,096 tonnes to 4,246 tonnes. In 2010, it exceeded 5,000 tonnes, before falling slightly to 4,284 tonnes in 2011″ by Sir Ronald Sanders.A huge
    stockpile is a big proof which shows the non-necessity for whaling more to the
    world.A huge stockpile = “preparation of the third World War” ? Why nobody suspects? I do.

    Whaling industry continued telling the world a lie and made the whaling issue the taboo for the Japanese.
    So Japanese people seldom consider a whale.The government and media manipulate the blind spot skillfully, and use it, and it is making whaling industry continue.
    Australia is the country blessed very much with mineral resources. The future will not have Japan without Australia.
    “The Abe whaling Cabinet.” of a whaling group of promoters understands this.
    The Japanese government fears being negotiated by the immense
    mineral resources of Australia very much.
    The whole world is observing Australia and
    Japan in a whaling issue. Australia is the only justice and hope.

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