Southern California environment news and trends

Greenpeace viral video spoof: the new school of environmental protest

As reported by the L.A. Times, when a slickly produced video (above) that purportedly showed a Royal Dutch Shell event going horribly wrong ignited a media firestorm last week, it heralded the latest weapon environmentalists are using to protest their corporate targets: social media.

The video, which depicts a woman being doused in Diet Coke from a malfunctioning ice sculpture bearing the Shell corporate logo, was realistic enough that some media outlets, including Gizmodo, were compelled to report on it as though it actually happened.

The Funny or Die-style parody produced by Greenpeace in conjunction with anti-corporate activists the Yes Men was in response to a very serious preliminary injunction recently issued by U.S. District Judge Sharon Gleason after Shell filed a series of motions looking to keep Greenpeace away from two Arctic drilling sites. With the injunction, potential protestors who stray within a kilometer of either site or half a kilometer of any accompanying Shell vessel would face serious federal penalties, far beyond the usual trespassing charges.