Shell blocks employees from learning about Kiobel v. Shell testing corporate personhood Supreme Court case
- Shell blocks 70,000 employees from learning about Supreme Court case Kiobel
v. Shell Testing Corporate Personhood
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: The Yes Lab <mailing@...>
Date: 2 October 2012 09:16
Subject: Shell blocks 70,000 employees from learning about Supreme Court
* Shell Blocks Employee Access to Activist Website http://murderisbad.com *
*71,010 employees blocked from tweeting Oprah about Supreme Court murder
Houston, TX (October 2, 2012) � Early Monday morning, 71,010 Shell
employees received an email from the company's "Grassroots Employee
Empowerment Division" providing information on Kiobel v. Royal Dutch
a pivotal human rights case being argued in the U.S. Supreme Court.
email contained links to news stories, as well as a tool to help employees
tweet their feelings about the case at key US news anchors (and Oprah
The only thing is, Shell has no "Grassroots Employee Empowerment Division,"
and they don't want publicity for the case. The email was in fact the work
of an activist group called People Against Legalizing Murder (PALM), who
received the list of Shell emails from what they believe to be a group of
disaffected employees. (A similar leak
two years ago.)
Within minutes of the email being sent out, Shell internally blocked
http://i.imgur.com/Q7AA1.jpg the site, preventing employees from accessing
it. "I would love to participate, but access is denied to all links you
sent out," wrote one employee among many. The 71,010 employees were
informed this morning http://murderisbad.com/email of the situation and the
site's new URL http://murderisbad.com/.
PALM intended the action to help shine a spotlight on the case, brought by
the widow of Dr. Barinem Kiobel, who was hanged along with novelist Ken
Saro-Wiwa for opposition to Shell's drilling plans in West Africa. Shell is
alleged to have aided paramilitary forces that raided more than 60
villages, killed over 800 people, and displaced 30,000 more.
To prevail, Shell lawyers must overturn a 200-year-old law, the Alien Tort
Statute (ATS), that compensates victims of international crimes. (The law
has been used to compensate Holocaust survivors
sued for restitution from corporations that profited from slavery and
forced labor during World War II.) Shell's lawyers are arguing
their corporation is not subject to the ATS because it is not a
"When it comes to things like election spending, Shell and other
to have all the rights of people," said Sean Dagohoy from PALM. "But when
accused of murder, Shell conveniently argues that they aren't a person
A ruling in their favor would be a very dangerous precedent, and would
the United States' reputation as a place that cares about human rights.
That's why we attempted to reach out to Shell employees to help get the
"Surely most Shell employees, like most people, don't want multinationals
to get away with murder just because murder's convenient," said Andy
Bichlbaum of the Yes Labhttp://yeslab.org/ , which provided technical
assistance for the action.
"Shell needs to let its employees speak," said Mike Bonanno of the Yes Lab.
"They can prevent it for a day, but in the long run they have no choice."
Sean Dagohoy sean.dagohoy@...
People Against Legalizing Murder (PALM)
Andy Bichlbaum or Mike Bonanno murderisbad@...
The Yes Lab
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]