A closed Mango store in a shopping mall in St. Petersburg, Russia. The company temporarily suspended operations in Russia in March to protest the invasion of Ukraine, joining a global corporate boycott against the country.
We should demand greater social responsibility from businesses, but pressuring them to undertake responsibilities that only governments can address is the wrong way to get there.
Cardiff Philharmonic came under fire for removing the Russian composer Tchaikovsky from its performance schedule, in response to the Ukraine war.
IanDagnall Computing | Alamy Stock Photo
Russian citizens in the west are being targeted in much the same way Germans, Italians, and Japanese were during the second world war.
AAP Image/Brendon Thorne
The Sydney Festival boycott was a vibrant example of engaged citizens taking foreign policy into their own hands.
The enslaved people who produced sugar before the Civil War did dangerous and grueling work.
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Before the Civil War, US activists sought to combat slavery through sugar boycotts. Instead, consumption grew.
Israelis have long had a sweet tooth for Ben & Jerry’s.
AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov
Ben & Jerry’s decision to no longer sell ice cream in the occupied territories comes as Israel continues to lose the support of a group of Americans who once were stalwart allies.
Oil palm fruit in North Aceh, Indonesia.
Fachrul Reza / Barcroft Media via Getty Images
Palm oil is responsible for widespread deforestation and labor abuses, but it’s also cheap and incredibly useful. That’s why many advocates call for reforming the industry, not replacing it.
An illustration of a sugar plantation in Antigua.
The British Library
A scholar of slavery in the British Empire describes the first boycott against sugar made with slave labor in the West Indies.
It’s a hard sell to pretend banks are the playthings of activist groups.
AAP Image/Darren England
Laws on boycotts already exist, but their aim was never to target consumer groups.
Brunei’s Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah has long been known as a party boy. Now, he’s imposing strict Islamic religious rule on the people of Brunei.
Brunei’s new anti-gay Sharia laws are the harshest in the world. Yet few countries have publicly condemned them, and an international boycott could backfire.
In this 2015 photo, Ensaf Haidar, wife of the jailed Saudi Arabian blogger Raif Badawi, shows a portrait of her husband in France. The arrest of Badawi’s sister is at the heart of a diplomatic spat between Canada and Saudi Arabia that will significantly affect trade between the two countries.
(AP Photo/Christian Lutz)
The diplomatic spat between Canada and Saudi Arabia could have serious economic ramifications as well. When diplomatic ties are cut, research shows trade suffers significantly.
China hopes to make more microprocessor chips in China, which makes it a great industry to lead a boycott.
If companies in key industries collectively shunned the Chinese market, that would force China’s leaders to take notice, with less risk of blowback.
Students who walked out of school protest against gun violence in front of the White House.
The lightning-quick corporate response to demands for a boycott against the NRA shows that companies can’t escape politics in an age saturated with social media.
Boycotts can bring backlashes – and back tracking.
Liverpool fans campaigning for a boycott of The Sun at the FA Cup semi-final in 2012.
Liverpool FC has imposed a complete ban on The Sun but it cannot prevent the tabloid newspaper from continuing to cover the club.
Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA
Musicians have largely greeted Trump with the sound of silence – and in doing so, they check the normalisation of the current administration.
His example appears to be living on in corporate America these days.
Che Guevera via www.shutterstock.com
Companies, which in the past tended to stay neutral on divisive social and political issues, are increasingly taking a stand. What’s behind the change?
Both major parties have a platform that could ultimately facilitate same-sex marriage in Australia.
Experience in the US serves to highlight the potential long-term economic consequences if Australia fails to legalise same-sex marriage.
A woman holds a picture of her relative missing in the Rana Plaza collapse.
The horrific collapse of a factory in Bangladesh that killed hundreds sent American scrambling for ways to ensure this doesn’t happen again. A professor explains why boycotts are not the answer.
Mamma mia …
Daniel Dal Zennaro/EPA
If Elton was to take a look through fashion boycotts in the past, he wouldn’t find a great track record (not that he seems too set on this one anyway).
Boycotters need to be careful about the comparisons they draw.
The Q Speaks
Russell Brand is the latest to muscle in on the Israel-Palestine conflict, calling for big businesses to pull funding from the country. But the issue of boycotts is a fraught one. For many Jews, the word…