Sunday, March 11, 2012

Alibaba - here is the good news.

I forwarded my last blog on Alibaba to Jack Ma, CEO, who immediately passed it on to John Spelich, Alibaba's VP in charge of their international corporate affairs.

Here is John's response:

Thanks for the note to Jack, which was forwarded to me.

Please help us get the word out. We do not permit the sale of manta rays on our site. But we found that our listing rules were not clear on that front so late last week we clarified that our listing rules also protect animals who are under UN protection.

We had a handful of listings of manta ray for sale on our site and those are either down or in process of coming down. As a user-generated site we cannot always know what listings are put up but we are pleased when members of the community point out things like this.

John W. Spelich
Alibaba Group
VP-Intl. Corporate Affairs

Oceana has already been notified with the request to call off their petition. I have not heard from them yet.

It was so easy to get through to Alibaba's top management and have their immediate reaction to this issue.

I wonder why the Oceana employees have not tried using that channel before starting a cumbersome petitioning campaign... Hmmmm....

Did they do that in order to show their donors, existing and potential, how "active" they are in the conservation business?

How ineffective was their approach in this case, and what a waste of time! Do they always work like that?....

Ila France-Porcher wrote to Oceana two days ago:

Dear Representative of Oceana,

I have been receiving letters from Elizabeth Griffin and Emily Fisher saying:

"Sign today to tell CEO Jack Ma to stop profiting from the deaths of threatened manta rays»
So I'm writing to let you know that one of our members, the same one who convinced Alibaba to stop selling shark fins at the beginning of The Year of the Shark (2009), has contacted the company about the matter, and Alibaba has accordingly removed manta ray products from its websites.

Therefore I would appreciate it if you would spread the word that Jack Ma has once again shown his determination NOT to support practices that threaten vulnerable wild animal species.

Thank you.

With good wishes,
Ila France Porcher
The Shark Group

So far, so good. I would now expect Oceana to set the record straight in their website.


Ila France Porcher said...

Thank you for posting this, Wolfie. The incident has shown why communication is so important.
I hope that Oceana sends its apologies to Mr. Jack Ma personally after deliberately connecting him with the manta ray profiteering. Jack Ma and people like him, who consistently make the moral choice, should be acknowledged and thanked, particularly in such a sensitive context as the Asian market and shark finning. Alibaba has become a beacon of hope to us who have had faith all along that if the Chinese people only learned the truth about shark finning, they would change the recipe for their special soup.

DaShark said...

Well said Ila.

But far from that, Oceana have instead decided to spin it & are currently busy engaging in public victory laps.

Seen that MO before & like there, I'm totally not impressed.