The ivory trade is slaughtering elephants by the hundreds in horrific massacres that rip apart herds and leave orphaned calves to starve. But despite an official policy against selling products from endangered animals, Google still traffics ivory — taking money from ivory sellers to promote their products. Google offers thousands of ivory items on its shopping sites around the world. Its lax enforcement of its own policies allows unscrupulous sellers to find easy markets for illegal ivory. Google needs to stop this horrific practice today.
Elephants are some of the most intelligent and social animals on the planet. They develop lifelong friendships, spend years raising their young, mourn their dead and weep at rejection. They’re also at enormous risk: the population of African forest elephants has plummeted 62% in the past decade. We must stop the ivory trade if we wish to save this species.
Studies show that a robust legal trade swells overall demand for ivory, resulting in poaching, more deaths, and increased risk of extinction. Google claims that it “takes down ads as soon as they are detected”, but the ivory trade has been a chronic issue on the website. The same ads appear day after day after day. Google is simply not taking its own role in the ivory trade seriously.
Google is only paying lip service to the idea of stamping it out, because Google doesn’t want the world to know that it has blood on its hands. If we, as its customers, can raise enough of an outcry, Google will dedicate itself to eradicating the ivory trade on its own site.
After years of declining elephant populations, the global ban on new ivory in 1989 caused elephant populations to surge back. But the short reprieve has ended, and in many countries elephant populations are once more dropping drastically. We need to end trade in all ivory, including older products, in order to ensure elephants remain here for our grandchildren.
Thanks for all you do,
Claiborne and the team at SumOfUs.org
CCTV: Kenya urges world to impose moratorium on ivory trading to save wildlife 6 September, 2013
The Guardian: Google shopping adverts fuel ivory trade, conservation group warns 5 March, 2013