Second Life Briefing on the Seal Hunt

Today, we held a virtual public briefing at IFAW’s virtual information center in Second Life to give an update on our Stop the Seal Hunt campaign.  This is the second event we have held in Second Life in as many months. A number of people were in attendance including a representative of Lynda Waltho, MP (Labour member for Stourbridge,), who wrote to the British Department of Trade and Industry calling to a ban on the seal hunt and stop the importation of Canadian seal products into the United Kingdom.

Here are a few photos:




We are actively seeking new ways to take our message to people around the world, and engaging the residents of Second Life is yet another way to educate people about animal welfare issues.

Here is the transcript of today's briefing presented by Daisey Meadowbrook, IFAW virtual representative in Second Life:

Welcome to the IFAW 2007 seal hunt debrief. Thank you so much for coming. My name is Daisey Meadowbrook and I’ll be your host.  We had a couple of enforcers around, you never know who might show up.

I’m available for questions at any time - send me a friend invite and I’ll be happy to accept and respond both in world and out via IM/email. 

There are links to press materials on our Internet campaign site, and in world, including position papers, videos and fact sheets.

The 2007 Seal Hunt Campaign video scheduled to be in this presentation is unavailable, however we do have an example from last year hooked up.  Please feel free to view this video after today’s presentation.  Additionally you can view all of our current work at

To date, almost 200,000 seals have been killed.  The Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans declared a total allowable catch or TAC at 270,000 for 2007. 

During our campaign we have employed both offline and online tactics with the goal of ending the commercial seal hunting industry around the world.  Examples of offline tactics include national spots on television, on the ground materials gathering and research and print advertising.

Examples of the online tactics including podcasts, blogs, picture streams and our homepage flash which can all be reached from our campaign web site.

Since 1969 when IFAW was founded on this issue, the hunt has resumed in large scale due to Canadian government subsidies supporting the markets for seal products. 

Canada has allowed nearly a million seals to be killed over the past three years, during the largest marine mammal hunt in the world. 

As many seals are killed today as during the 1950s and 60s when the hunt caused the seal population to decline by as much as two thirds. 

Today, IFAW still leads the worldwide fight to save harp seals from unsustainable commercial exploitation through monitoring the hunt from the ice, conservation research, political advocacy and public education.  We maintain that the core differentiating factor here is cruelty.

Even with cruelty aside, poor ice conditions are now making it very difficult for the harp seal herd to breed and wean their pups successfully. 

These conditions were observed in 2007 and if you visit Green.TV and play the video provided on the IFAW channel available there, you’ll see there simply isn’t anywhere for the pups to survive until they are old enough to swim.

For 2007, IFAW revamped its microsite to offer new ways for activists, supporters and anyone interested in stopping this cruelty to take action. 

The site features an interactive Flash element with the goal of driving 300,000 actions to save 300,000 seals. 

The site will allow those who take action to become a part of the creative, by posting a picture, voice mail and their name and location…supporters can see how one person can truly make a difference.

We are also launching a truly unique seal hunt debate site for civil discourse on the issues surrounding the hunt.  This site will be live by end of week.

Again, if I can be of any further service, please don’t hesitate to call on me.  Additionally, IFAW will continue it’s presence here on Progressive Island throughout our campaign year, with the next iteration focused on our upcoming Whale Campaign.

We hope you’ll join us in our space directly behind this venue for some socializing…

Many thanks for your attention…I’m happy to try and answer any questions you may have.

Comments: 8

10 years ago

i think people should stop this what in the world did the do to you just stop this pleeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaase

10 years ago

Ditto again. What a bunch of drivel. You apparently have been trained to believe that all the problems facing Canada, like depletion of fish stock has been caused by everyone other than yourselves. Your government is to blame for failing to implement proper conservation. Your fishermen depleted the fish stock - not the Europeans and not the seals. Stop and take responsibility for your actions!

10 years ago

HUNTING OF SEALS FOR PROFIT....there's not much on a seal to sell for profit when they are 4 weeks old,mostly guts,blood,fat and skin.The best parts are kept for food, the fat & pelts are sold.The other 30% goes back to nature to sustain the food supply in the ocean unlike the toxic waste from factory farms.What profit ?? sealers make is well spent on nessary things(like food & clothing)....Newfoundland IS one of the most econimacially depressed areas in the canada....AND it's through no fault of their's mostly the europeans who raped the fish stocks from their shores....

10 years ago

IFAW speaks out against all forms of animal cruelty, 365 days a year. This happens to be a blog about the seal hunt, so it contains information about IFAW's campaign against the seal hunt. That seems quite logical to me. Also, IFAW is opposed to the commercial seal hunt, i.e., the hunting of seals for profit only. IFAW does not oppose Native and Inuit hunting of the seal for food, clothing, tools, etc.
As someone brought up the issue of canned hunts, IFAW is also opposed to canned hunts, and you can read about that and many other IFAW campaigns by visiting the main website at

10 years ago

A "CULTURAL HUNT" would be hunting penned animals on hunting ranches with bow & arrow I guess ??? it continues year after year without any bother from animal rights groups anyway....maybe sealers will have to use bow & arrow next year...then maybe the hunters would be left alone like the hunters on hunting ranches ???

10 years ago

Dear Nadine: Do you live in a vacuum? The seal hunt is no longer a "cultural" activity; and very few, if any of the sealers actually "use" the meat of the seals -- they are after one thing and one thing only - the fur. Otherwise, why would the ice pans be littered with the bloody carcasses of the seal pups? Most of the sealers aren't "native" aborigines, they are fishermen who supplement their income with the sale of the pelts. Furthermore, the hunt is inhumane; the sealers do not follow the established guidelines for verifying the animal is dead before they hook, gaff, and drag it over the ice and even before skinning them. Sealers do not recognize these creatures as sentient. The "hunt" is barbaric; not "cultural."

10 years ago

Seal Hunting Is Part Of Peoples Culture. They Dont Just Use It For The Fur, They Also Use It For Food. Its Like White People Killing Chickens, Cows And Pigs. White People Have Been Doing That For Generations. What If Natives Started Protesting Against White People Killing Cows, Chickens And Pigs? People Survive On Meat And Natives Like Seal, Like We Like Our Beef. Dont You Think Pigs And Other Cute Animals Are Getting Slautered. If Your Going To Be Against Seal Hunting, You Should Also Be Against Killing Other Animals.

10 years ago

Saving Seals in Second Life

Kevin Reid with IDI wrote in yesterday to highlight an ongoing series of Second Life events that the International Fund for Animal Welfare is holding to try to mobilize public opinion against Arctic seal hunting. Im normally a bit of a Second L...

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