I received an email today, as happens on a very frequent basis, from Sum Of Us. I was invited many moons ago to participate in a petition signing, and since then I’ve had issue after issue parade through my inbox. I’m not opposed to the principle. In fact I appreciate the fact that passionate people, with more time on their hands than I do, research issues and bring them to the forefront, motivating people to speak up. It’s the very mission of Sum Of Us, OpenMedia.ca, and several other organizations that I follow.
I don’t respond to all requests for participation. I like to read about the issue, research the ones that interest me to see if they have real merit, and act according to my conviction to either participate, or not, in a petition, demonstration, or other process.
Today’s email though, had my interest from the start: Google has blood on its hands!
I was shocked. I mean Google is supposed to not be evil, right?
Reading on, I found that Google is set to take the fall for people posting ads for ivory products through its websites. While I agree that the ivory trade is at best reprehensible, and at worst idiotic, and would campaign to see the senseless killing of elephants stopped, I really think Sum Of Us goes too far blaming Google for the ivory trade. You can’t blame the platform for the actions of users any more than you can blame WordPress for enabling shitty websites, or Craigslist because This guy tried to sell his baby on Craigslist.
I’ve listened, I’ve signed when I agreed, but I’m starting to think that the folks setting the agenda, i.e. Sum Of Us, may not be qualified to determine which issues to raise into public awareness, if they can’t even discriminate between those whose responsibility it really is: elephant killers and ivory merchants, those whose responsibility it is to prevent and prosecute crime, and those supplying an apolitical service.
It is up to regional law enforcement to act upon this illegal trade. It is up to African governments to clean up their act, their corruption and put an end to the destruction of their own natural resources. Google’s “hands” are not stained with blood.
You don’t blame the car manufacturer because someone ran over a cyclist in a car they manufactured.
Please keep in mind that comments are moderated and
rel="nofollow" is in use. So, please do not use a spammy keyword or a domain as your name, or it will be deleted. Let us have a personal and meaningful conversation instead.