From: John Donovan [mailto:[email protected]]
Sent: 23 February 2009 11:59
To: Wiseman, Richard RM SI-RDS-CCO
Cc: Brandjes, Michiel CM SI-LC
Subject: Shell to censor pornography, gambling and nudity at all Shell offices
Dear Mr Wiseman
I have printed below a self-explanatory draft article.
If you had no involvement in the leaked email I will delete the entire paragraph in which you are currently mentioned.
If you wish to make any comments, including correcting any untrue information, I will publish it unedited.
If I hear nothing from you by 4pm UK time today, I will assume that the leaked email is authentic and that you have had an involvement in the leaked email.
If you need more time to respond, kindly let me know but please appreciate that we do wish to publish ASAP bearing in mind the date of 26 February stated in the email.
DRAFT ARTICLE: Shell to censor pornography, gambling and nudity at all Shell offices
By John Donovan
Printed below is an email received from a Shell insider. It includes the content of a leaked Shell email. To protect the source, some information has been deleted from it. The reference to “the good Baptists” relates to the comments (published with a health warning) on Saturday.
Do I detect the hand of Richard Wiseman, the hypocritical Chief Ethics & Compliance Officer of Royal Dutch Shell Plc? Former Shell Legal Director Mr Wiseman in his new guise preaches honesty, integrity and transparency, but has a track record (in my experience) of endorsing corrupt practices, deceit, forgery and sleazy undercover activity, all carried out on behalf of Shell.
We understand the Internet censorship policy has for some reason already been applied against this website.
EMAIL RECEIVED FROM A TRUSTED SHELL INSIDER
Please read the message below and I would appreciate if you would publish it.
The outside world has become so evil that the good people who lead Shell have taken appropriate steps to protect the souls of the hardworking and honest Shell staff.
It means the poor Shell people still have to anxiously wait 3 more days before they get protected by the good people of IT in Shell and keep all the evil things of this bad world outside.
Thereafter it once more will become a nice and cosy Shell family. Thanks to the good Baptists who try very hard to root out all evil.
If you decide to publish this, the news spreads that much quicker and the Baptists and other good people in Shell will be indebted to you forever.
From my little house on the prairie, a tormented soul!
LEAKED SHELL INTERNAL EMAIL
Internet Content Filtering (ICF) is expanded to all internet access points globally as part of a global program to upgrade Shell’s networks. This enhancement will protect you from web-based security threats, and assist in your compliance with the Code of Conduct.
Effective as of 26 February 2009 12:00:00GMT, filtering will be done on categories explicitly banned by the Code of Conduct, such as pornography, gambling, nudity etc; and is implemented anonymously and in aggregate. Only WWW traffic is checked – Shell Wide Web (SWW) sites remain unaffected.
This message is only for your information only.
No action is required of you and there should be no impact to your internet access. This service will not slow down your browsing experience. However, if you experience problems accessing sites on the internet (WWW) please:
Shell Sex, Drugs & Oil
Forbes.com: Sex, Drugs and Oil: 10 September 2008
The Denver Post: Interior Dept, scandal: Sex, Drugs alleged in oil deals: 10 September 2008
Reuters: US gov’t workers in oil industry sex, drug scandal: 10 September 2008
BBC News: US oil agency rapped over conduct: 11 Sept 2008
USAToday: Oil brokers sex scandal may affect drilling debate: 11 September 2008
CBS News: Sex Scandal Taints Oil Drilling Debate: 11 September 2008
Reuters: US Interior Secy ‘outraged’ by oil-sex scandal: 11 September 2008
On 24/02/2009 09:32, “[email protected]” wrote:
Dear Mr Donovan,
As usual I will ignore the gratuitous, libellous and insulting language you use about me.
The email is genuine and is completely consistent with the Shell Code of Conduct (page 67), which you can find at:
The fact that your informant feels he should have unlimited access to pornography through Shell computers (presumably while at the office) says as much about him, as it does about you for supporting him.
Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer
Royal Dutch Shell plc
Shell Centre, London SE1 7NA
Registered in England and Wales number 4366849
Registered Office: Shell Centre, London, SE1
Headquarters: Carel van Bylandtlaan 30, 2596 HR
The Hague, The Netherlands
Email: [email protected]
RESPONSE FROM JOHN DONOVAN, 25 FEBRUARY 2009
From: John Donovan
Date: Wed, 25 Feb 2009 15:06:12 +0000
Conversation: Shell to censor pornography, gambling and nudity at all Shell offices
Subject: Re: Shell to censor pornography, gambling and nudity at all Shell offices
Dear Mr Wiseman
As you are well aware, there is no libel if what is stated as fact is true. That is why you choose to ignore the relevant comments. I am fully prepared to prove in court that your track record at Shell, as described in my email, is true.
Under the circumstances it was unwise and inappropriate for you to become the Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer of Royal Dutch Shell Plc. It must be an uncomfortable position being open to accusations of hypocrisy, as you are.
If you or your colleagues in Shell senior management take issue with my comments, then you are of course free to take legal action. Indeed, it would be wrong for Shell to fail to defend such a senior officer of the company bearing in mind your job title and the serious nature of the comments.
Of course if Shell did take action there would be some embarrassment caused by the Shell magazine article authored by you, explaining to Shell employees why it would be counterproductive for Shell to sue us for libel.
I described the pending move by Shell as censorship because that seems an appropriate description. I suspected that you had a role because you have form. You confirmed in previous correspondence that our postings on the Tell Shell Internet forum for open lively debate had in fact been secretly censored by Shell. The devious deletions were not only at odds with Shell claims about the uncensored nature of the forum, but also in contravention of Shells claimed support for freedom of expression under the UN Declaration of Universal Human Rights.
With regards to the Shell censorship process coming into force on 26 February, contrary to the implication of your assertion, I have made no comment supporting the informant whose own comments were very much tongue-in-cheek which would be obvious to anyone possessing a sense of humour. Your use of the term informant is unfortunate as it conjures up all manner of unpleasant connotations connected with crime and war.
Shell has the right to stop Shell employees using Shell equipment in Shell facilities to view pornography or participate in online gambling. I do however believe that it would be in Shells interest to allow its employees to visit our website which provides a genuinely uncensored Live Chat forum attracting distinguished retired Shell employees such as Paddy Briggs, Bill Campbell and Iain Percival, who all speak with the benefit of great experience and expertise.
In this connection are you not concerned by the recent postings on Live Chat relating to religion being apparently zealously promoted inside Shell? I draw your attention in particular to the posting by Promise Keepers alleging religious arm twisting by supervisors and scripture quotations attached to company e-mails.
Returning to the question of your integrity, I have stated on a number of occasions that I do not believe you would tell any lies on behalf of Shell. Instead you simply ignore questions on supersensitive matters e.g.
1. Shells key roll in the Al-Yamamah/BAE oil-for-arms corruption scandal.
2. Shells close association with the Hakluyt spy firm used in many sinister undercover operations for Shell on an international basis.
3. The recent shamefully low ethical rating of for Shell (510) compared with BP (145) out of 541 multinationals.
Although misplaced loyalty may have led you astray, you have been rewarded with an imposing title and no doubt enjoy the perks and status which has included making an anti-corruption speech in an exotic location. The subject was ironic in view of the support you and senior Shell management, including Malcolm Brinded, gave for the corrupt business practices of a Shell UK manager AJL and his equally dishonest managerial colleagues. Shells own internal documents provided absolute proof of a plot to deceive and steal, under false pretences, intellectual property from a number of third parties who thought they were participating in a fair tender process guaranteed by Shells General Business Principles. In fact, the tender process was rigged. Shells ethical code of conduct stood for as little back then as it does today.
That astonishing episode is one of many which ensures that Shell will never sue us for libel. The prospect of such a huge pile of Shell dirty laundry being aired in open court is just too frightening for Shell management to contemplate. That is why our website continues to exist despite costing Shell billions of dollars (Sakhalin 2) as a result of the flow of insider information and leaked internal emails, including the one in this case, which you have confirmed as being authentic.
Leak after leak, embarrassment after embarrassment, Shell remains impotent and humiliated. Shells predicament is obvious to Shell employees, the global oil and gas industry, and the news media.
Sadly many small companies and individuals have fallen victim to Shells predatory business practices including intellectual property theft. Some small companies have not survived the experience. Lives of individuals have been destroyed with loss of employment. Small companies and individuals cannot afford to fight Shell in the courts and Shell takes full advantage of its overwhelmingly financial might and its wide-ranging pernicious influence.
I note from the recent Cold Wind Rules leaked internal email sent on behalf of a Shell Vice President, that nothing has changed. Shell is still following the same ruthless policy against third party contractors/businesses.
Our lives have been ruined by Shells unethical business practices against third parties. It brings me no pleasure to see that Shell as a company has not changed, showing no signs of improvement or repentance.
Frankly, I would much prefer to be busy, as I was for many decades, operating a very successful business on an international basis with a host of major clients including BP, Texaco and Conoco. However, that life was brought to an end by Shells blatant dishonesty, followed by intimidation, threats, undercover activity and outright trickery in the subsequent litigation which was under your direct control as Shell UK Legal Director. Under the circumstances, your appointment as Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer is a shameful joke.
I now devote my time to a good cause, namely giving publicity and help to other third parties who have also suffered injustice at the hands of a greedy, mendacious, hypocritical and ruthless Shell management.
The most disgusting aspect of all is that Shell continues to promote the Shell General Business Principles when in fact they are a sham. Or, as I have previously described them, a confidence tricksters charter.