The Discovery Channel has gotten in touch with The Sharkman in reference to the letter that was sent by Ila (Shark Week 2007 lineup), read below...for now words, remains to be seen if these will turn into action - but it is nice to see they are listening and reaching out:
"Dear List members and Friends. As you all know, less than 48 hours ago, Ila sent out the Letter to Discovery Channel. Here is an update of the events that followed. Within 12 hours, I had the first response. I received an email from Katherine Nelson at Discovery. She thanked us for the letter and told me that Discovery would be very happy to discuss the issue and she asked me for my personal phone number.
I immediately wrote her back and thanked her for the fast response. A few hours later I received another email, this time from Jeff Hasler, Senior Vice President of Development and Production. He thanked me for my response to Katharine's letter and told me that he would like to call me later.
This afternoon at about 3.30pm my time, Jeff Hasler phoned me and we talked for around 45 minutes. He was very keen to discuss the issues we had raised in the letter and also agreed on quite a few of the points. We talked about the problems that sharks face as far as finning, habitat destruction...etc..... and we also talked about the media image in general. I told Jeff that we all understand that Discovery needs the ratings and for this you need the drama and the action, and that we do not have any problems with Discovery showing a few interviews with shark attack survivors, as long as these are balanced out with scientific research and conservation issues. Action does not always have to be in the form of human victims.
We all know that sharks are predators and their hunting techniques on their own are also awesome to watch. We also discussed shark finning and shark research issues in detail. Jeff is a guy with a hell of a personality and we both share the same views and we are both very confident that together we can come up with some great projects for future Shark Weeks.
Jeff promised me that Discovery Channel is there to listen to our views and he wants to take this to the next level. We will be having further discussions to find out what topics we can explore together and than we will also set up a meeting between a small select group from Shark-L and Discovery Channel. During our talk Jeff told me that I have already given him two great ideas to work on.... and...... oppsss better not let the proverbial cat out of the bag yet. Jeff and Discovery Channel made my day and I can promise that together, we are going to make a better future for the Sharks.
Thank you to everyone that was involved in this. please feel free to spread and publish this email.
Thank you Discovery Channel. Shark Powered The Sharkman (list dad)