The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) recently launched its 2019 Dirty Dozen List of companies and entities that facilitate sexual exploitation in the U.S. Four of the companies on the list tout their sustainability programs. Those companies are Amazon, Google, Twitter, and United Airlines.
There is a serious disconnect with these companies between their sustainability efforts and their efforts to curb their company’s hand in sexual exploitation. The most quoted definition of sustainable development comes from the UN World Commission on Environment and Development: “Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” Based on that definition, how sustainable is it for companies to facilitate sexual exploitation?
Read the following comparisons of the four companies’ facilitation of sexual exploitation with the sustainability efforts they promote and answer that question for yourself:
Amazon promotes its sustainability measures while promoting material that sexually exploits children
Amazon is the world’s largest online retailer. While their corporate policy prohibits selling pornography, they promote “material that sexualizes children and normalizes the dehumanization and sexual commodification of women,” according to the list. That material includes child-like sex dolls, photography books with eroticized child nudity, and pornographic magazines. The Kindle e-reader has sexually explicit content that contains incest, babysitter and group-sex themes.
Amazon is proud of the fact it was is the “leading corporate purchaser of renewable energy in the United States in 2016.” And it should be proud. The company has a long-term goal to power its infrastructure using 100 percent renewable energy. It also has a goal for 50 percent of all of its shipments to be net zero carbon by 2030, and it calls that project “Shipment Zero.”
Google promotes renewable energy use while allowing the exploitation of children on YouTube
A list of companies are suspending advertising on YouTube over concerns that the video platform is being used for pedophile networking and the eroticization of children. Those companies include the Walt Disney Co., Nestle, and Epic Games, Inc. Google claimed to be solving the problem, but two days after the claim, Haley Halverson from the NCSE researched the allegations and “found alarming results” which confirmed the claims. The reason that Google has made the list this year is because of its failure to “proactively address” the problems.
Google declares that it strives “to build sustainability into everything we do.” Part of its sustainability measures includes transitioning to renewable energy and making its data centers more efficient. Its data centers use, on average, 50 percent less energy than a typical data center does. In 2017, Google reached 100 percent renewable energy use for its global operations. Those are wonderful achievements.
United Airlines invests in low-carbon aviation fuels but lacks sufficient policies for sexual harassment
United Airlines makes the list because of its insufficient policies and training for aircrew to deal with sexual harassment on their airplanes. The incidents of sexual harassment include viewing pornography in-flight, and unwanted sexual advances and attention. The NCSE is asking United to update the language on their website and other places to make clear that they prohibit viewing pornographic content of any kind during a United flight.
United declares on its website that it is “committed to operating sustainably and responsibly.” Its sustainability initiatives include investing in low-carbon aviation fuels, a fuel-efficient fleet, and onboard recycling. It became the first airline in 2016 to partner with Clean the World, an organization that recycles partially used soap and other hygiene products. United’s employees collect the unused amenity kits from its flights and donate them to the organization where they are refurbished into hygiene kits.
Twitter promotes its philanthropic efforts while allowing prostitution and sex trafficking posts
There may be 10 million Twitter accounts that include sexually explicit content, according to media reports. Twitter is used for advertising sex trafficking victims and prostituted persons through webcamming or pornographic images.
Twitter touts its commitment to “make the world a better place by harnessing the positive power of Twitter.” It is proud of its philanthropic efforts in San Francisco, which is home base for the company. The social networking giant also touts its work with non-profits around the world “to help them with best practices to develop a more effective and engaging presence on Twitter.”
What can you do to help
If you are disgusted and ready to do something, you can start by sharing the Dirty Dozen list on social media. Mention and tag the four companies cited in this article. Help get the word out that these companies facilitate sexual exploitation while touting their sustainability credentials.