Dillard’s is the third largest department store chain in the United States. The company operates more than 330 department stores in 29 states. Founded in 1938 in Little Rock, Ark., the company has compiled a long list of ethical problems, including poor business practices regarding sweatshops, disputes over not paying store suppliers, and the racial profiling of customers.
The world’s largest oil company, ExxonMobil has faced intense criticism for years. Oil spills, support of campaigns to deny climate change, major political donations to block regulation of oil industry, a dismal human rights record... The question is: How does one successfully boycott ExxonMobil?
GE ended its involvement with the nuclear weapons, but remains a military contractor. The company continues to face charges regarding environmental harm, fraud, employment discrimination, and poor safety conditions. GE’s extensive holding include NBC and the company has been condemned by activists for contributing to the consolidation of media at the expense of the freedom of the press.
Not long ago, video games were considered a harmless distraction for young people. In recent years, however, adults have increasingly become the most prevalent video gamers with industry magazines, web sites, and even tournaments rapidly spreading. One company stands out as a purveyor of violent video game content.
Probably best known for SPAM (the king of processed food), Hormel is a giant in the meat and poultry industry and had net sales of $5.4 billion in 2006. A multi-national corporation, Hormel has been repeatedly criticized for its opposition to strict federal guidelines and regulations of its industry. More Americans have clamored for a change, especially after the 2003 publication of Fast Food Nation, which illustrated the often dangerous conditions in which cows, chickens, pigs, and other animals are raised and slaughtered. Hormel is a notorious union-buster.
You may not have heard of Altria, but you likely know what it used to be called—Philip Morris, the largest cigarette maker in the world. According to many activists, Altria is among the worst corporate offenders in a number of areas. For years, the company refused to admit that cigarette smoking is addictive. It has not fully disclosed its political contributions, and has broadened its marketing into developing countries, often with devastating results.
Beginning in the 1970s, activists charged Nestle with unethical means in marketing its formula. INFACT led the challenge against Nestle and worked with countless other organizations an an internal boycott movement. The boycott put pressure on Nestle to change its policies. The company markets formula to women in poor countries, resulting in the deaths of thousands, or even millions, of babies. Four years after the initial boycott ended, activists renewed their opposition to Nestle.
Proctor and Gamble, the largest manufacturer of household products in the U.S., conducts inhumane animal testing for many of its products. Activists charge the company with spending only a fraction of the billions they use toward advertising on finding humane ways to test their products. According to studies, the company spent $3 billion (with a "B") on advertising in 2004—compared to the $64 million spent over a 14 year period on alternative testing methods.
Monsanto is the maker of Roundup and numerous other herbicide products. Roundup is used approximately 25 million times a year in the United States. The product's chief ingredient is glyphosphate, marketed as "benign," yet it has been shown to cause short-term breathing problems and long-term issues including genetic damage to blood cells. And that's just the beginning of the ethical questions regarding Monsanto.