Dear Democracy Now! Visitor: We are an independent, ad-free daily news program that serves millions of viewers and listeners each month. Our show is special because we make it our priority to go where the silence is. We put a spotlight on corporate and government abuses of power and lift up the stories of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. We do all of this with just a fraction of the budget and staff of a commercial news show. We do it without ads, corporate sponsorship or government funding. How is this possible? Only with your support. If everyone who visited our website in the next week donated just $15, we would cover all of our operating costs for the year. We can't do it without you. Please donate today. It takes just a couple of minutes to do your part to make sure Democracy Now! is there for you and everybody else.

Your Donation: $
Wednesday, May 8, 2002 FULL SHOW | HEADLINES | NEXT: On the Thirtieth Anniversary of the Draconian...
2002-05-08

The California Supreme Court Rules Nike Can Be Sued for Lying About Its Labor Practices, But the Aclu Sides with Nike: A Debate

download:   Video Get CD/DVD More Formats
This is viewer supported news

The California Supreme Court has ruled Nike is liable for deceptive advertising and misleading public statements about labor conditions in the company’s factories in Asia.

The court declared that Nike and other corporations are not protected by the First Amendment when they make false statements about their labor policies or company operations in ads, press releases, or public statements.

Nike became a major target of labor and global justice campaigners in the mid-1990s. In 1996, CorpWatch got a hold of Nike’s own audit of a factory in Vietnam which showed that workers were exposed to toxic chemicals without protection or safety training and were forced to work illegal excess overtime. The story found its way to the front page of the New York Times.

Nike responded with a wide-ranging public relations campaign. It hired Goodworks International, a consultancy firm owned by former United Nations Ambassador Andrew Young, to audit some of its factories. Nike then advertised Goodworks’ more favorable conclusions in full-page newspaper ads and letters to university presidents and athletic directors.

California environmental activist Marc Kasky sued Nike in 1998 for false advertising. The ACLU filed briefs in support of Nike. Today, we will have a debate.

Guests:

  • Medea Benjamin, Founding Director, Global Exchange.
  • Ann Brick, Staff Attorney, American Civil Liberties Union. She worked on the case Kasky v. Nike.

Related links:

Music:

  • Every City, Every Ghetto–Lauren Hill, The Miseducdation of Lauryn Hill (Ruffhouse CD).

Creative Commons License The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

This is viewer supported news