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By Will Copeland
Jan 24, 2011
view off the 4th belay

So yeah, nobody wants to drag themselves through another David Lama Cerro Torre thread.

BUT the one thing lacking in these threads (as far as I can tell) is a motivation for action against Lama, Red Bull, etc to stop the actions, lies, and stupidity of what's happening. I feel as if the majority of the climbing & mountaineering community is against Red Bull & Lama, so there must be something we can do.

So my question is, what can we do to get a real ball rolling in stopping the horrors that I can only imagine are taking place in SA as we speak. Does the access fund have any power here? AAC? AMGA?


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By climber pat
From Las Cruces, NM
Jan 24, 2011

Probably the most effective thing to do is let Red Bull know that you have stopped buying their product because of Lama's activities in Patagonia.


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By Erik W
From Bay Area, CA
Jan 24, 2011
North face of Ama Dablam - taken on approach to Kongma La.

I doubt Red Bull gives a shit that a handful of climbers - who likely weren't buying their product to begin with - won't buy any in the future because of their [our] objection to Lama's actions. For RB it's all about press and buzz, especially in the EXTREME teen market... and for them, ethics aren't even on the radar. Only place where our voice has any weight is with the climbing companies that sponsor Lama. Tell them that you will not buy their ropes and shoes as long as they continue to sponsor Lama and his actions in Patagonia (and add that you'll be telling everyone you know about the horseshit Lama is up to and the companies that are supporting his actions via their sponsorship). Mammut, Sportiva.... who else?


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By JonnyC
From Boulder, CO
Jan 24, 2011
petit

Which begs the question: have any of Lama's sponsored dropped him and if not, why not?


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By Aaron M
From Westminster, CO
Jan 24, 2011
Me

Aren’t there websites that do online petitions for things like this? Maybe we could put one of those together?

Here is his “Links” page: www.david-lama.com/en/servicenavigation/links.html

Since he can handle the heat, lets poor it on!


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By aed
From Jackson, WY
Jan 24, 2011
aed

Aaron M wrote:
Aren’t there websites that do online petitions for things like this? Maybe we could put one of those together? Here is his “Links” page: www.david-lama.com/en/servicenavigation/links.html Since he can handle the heat, lets poor it on!


And write in his guest book too.

www.david-lama.com/en/servicenavigation/gaestebuch.html


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By J. Fox
From Black Hawk, CO
Jan 24, 2011
Me too!

Isn't Will Gadd sponsored by Red-Bull too? I wonder if he could chime in and spell it out for them?


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By jmeizis
From Colorado Springs, CO
Jan 24, 2011
The Beginning of Mr. Clean (5.8) at the Barkeater Cliffs in Adirondack Park NY.

Did anyone notice he's twenty? He's barely out high school. The "I can take it." thing is likely posturing that, as the rest of us matured, we grew out of and forgot about. The kid feels like a badass and in reality he's a good climber but he acts like someone who hasn't had anyone in the climbing community to give him boundaries and teach him when to be humble or apologize.

Someone like a coach, mentor, older friend, sponsor, maybe dad, who was apparently a mountain guide, whoever, needs to pull him aside in private and let him know the consequences of his actions. He's a Euro with a gym climbing background it sounds like. He may not quite understand why he's pissing people off so much. He may not feel comfortable, with all that sponsor backing, to step down from where he's gotten himself. I don't know the guy so I don't want to presume that he's giving a large part of the climbing community the finger. Maybe I'm giving him too much credit but I don't believe that trying to get his sponsors to drop him and starting a petition will have the desired effect. More likely it would cause a back lash. A sort of "I do what I want" retort.

The guy needs a talking to at the very least.


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By Scotty P
Jan 24, 2011

So yeah, nobody wants to drag themselves through another David Lama Cerro Torre thread. BUT the one thing lacking in these threads (as far as I can tell) is a motivation for action against Lama, Red Bull, etc to stop the actions, lies, and stupidity of what's happening. quote>

From Mammut's Social Responsibility web page:
"Our aim is to offer the very best alpine products, assume our social responsibility, including social responsibility towards our partners, and leave behind the best possible ecological footprint. So that future generations can be mountaineers as well."

It seems that David Lama's actions, particularly as an Ambassador for Mammut, are in direct conflict with their stated goals. I contacted Mammut to let them know their athlete does not meet these standards, and that since Mammut will not adhere to their advertised "Social Responsibility" objectives, I will no longer be purchasing or recommending their gear.

While I'm certain that it's just a drop in the bucket, more drops might actually cause some good to happen.


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By cjdrover
From Somerville, MA
Jan 24, 2011
Taken at MWV Icefest 2014.

jmeizis wrote:
The guy needs a talking to at the very least.

I think he's had that...
Colin Haley, in his blog wrote:
I tried to convince Lama that he might place the bolts on lead, hanging from hooks, but he insisted that rap-bolting was his intention. Zack Smith chimed in with, "You know that people will be very upset if you place your bolts on rappel, right?" Lama's response was "I can take it."


His age is not an excuse. I'm only a few years older and I can see plain as daylight that what he's up to is BS. Plus, as his website is so proud of pointing out, he's been climbing since he was 5. How long does he need?

Anyways,

lasportiva@lasportiva.com

and

www.mammut.ch/en/apps/contact.html

Take 5 minutes to let them know, in a civil manner, how you all feel. I just did - who's next?

-Chris


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By Jace Mullen
From Oceanside, Ca
Jan 24, 2011

His age is in no way an excuse for any of the crap that he is pulling.

I'm 16 and can see why what is is doing is ridiculous.

Sponsors emailed.


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By Scott McMahon
From Boulder, CO
Jan 24, 2011
Bocan

This kid seems to be racking up quite the resume of douchebaggery. Nice legacacy you're building.


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By Mike Anderson
From Dayton, OH
Jan 24, 2011

Will Copeland wrote:
So my question is, what can we do to get a real ball rolling in stopping the horrors that I can only imagine are taking place in SA as we speak.


emphasis added by me

This is the problem with internet witch hunts. You don't know what is or isn't going on. Prior restraint (which is what you are suggesting) is one of the worst forms of oppression. The angry mobs need to disperse until you have something to be angry about. Continue to be outraged by the past, if it makes you feel better, but censoring people for "what you imagine they are gonna do" is abhorrent and you should be ashamed of yourselves.

And seriously, "horrors"? Aren't you exaggerating a little bit?


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By Scott O
From California
Jan 24, 2011
Batman Pinnacle

I've now written both Mammut and LaSportiva. I encourage others to do the same.


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By Scott O
From California
Jan 24, 2011
Batman Pinnacle

Mike Anderson wrote:
emphasis added by me This is the problem with internet witch hunts. You don't know what is or isn't going on. Prior restraint (which is what you are suggesting) is one of the worst forms of oppression. The angry mobs need to disperse until you have something to be angry about. Continue to be outraged by the past, if it makes you feel better, but censoring people for "what you imagine they are gonna do" is abhorrent and you should be ashamed of yourselves. And seriously, "horrors"? Aren't you exaggerating a little bit?


We already know what he did, and he has stated openly his intention to continue his actions with this trip. No imagination is necessary.


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By Mike Anderson
From Dayton, OH
Jan 24, 2011

Colin Haley wrote:
I tried to convince Lama that he might place the bolts on lead, hanging from hooks, but he insisted that rap-bolting was his intention.


Lead-bolting from hooks is a technicality loop-hole that is stylistically no different from rap bolting, other than that the rap bolter is at least honest about his transgressions, while the lead-aid-bolter is obsessed with what other people will think of him.

Anyone notice that the previous post on Haley's blog is a story about climbing with known rap-bolter, Tommy Caldwell?

This issue is dripping with hypocrisy, but it's not just from Red Bull.

I also like this angle: Numerous so-called badass alpinists have "climbed" the bolt ladders of the compressor route, but the mere possibility of a handful of new bolts being added so that the mountain might be climbed properly is a travesty. I understand that Maestri's bolting of one of the world's greatest peaks doesn't make it OK, but the hundreds of people following after to climb the route sort of does make it OK.

Now I think Red Bull tastes like urine (not that I know what urine tastes like) and I don't have an opinion about David Lama, but the frenzy about this is getting out of control, and IMO, unjustifiably one-sided.


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By jmeizis
From Colorado Springs, CO
Jan 24, 2011
The Beginning of Mr. Clean (5.8) at the Barkeater Cliffs in Adirondack Park NY.

Chris Drover wrote:
I think he's had that... His age is not an excuse. I'm only a few years older and I can see plain as daylight that what he's up to is BS.


I don't think any of what he's doing has an excuse but it might explain why he's not mature enough to take criticism and back off. That and his background. A lot of younger people who climb don't understand ethics. To them climbing is just a fun activity. That and Europe isn't exactly known for being the bastion of bolting ethics.

I don't excuse murder, the sex trade, or hacking off peoples limbs for stealing, but I understand the up bringing and circumstances that encourage such behavior and realize that while a petition and getting dropped by sponsors might prevent one action, it doesn't change the mentality of the person perpetrating the actions and they'll simply repeat the same action somewhere else.

Do you want to stop Cerro Torre from getting bolted irresponsibly or do you want David Lama to understand that the way he's doing things is irresponsible. Just preventing him from doing it on Cerro Torre isn't going to probably make him any less inclined to do it somewhere else. It's sort of a teach a man to fish thing.

I share the sentiment that what happened before was messed up and what he plans to do isn't any better. I just think there's a more effective way of getting the desired result. Maybe ignoring him until he gets his act together is better than bringing loads of attention to what he's doing. Maybe he just needs an old fashioned ass whooping. I dunno.


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By Ryan Williams
Administrator
From London (sort of)
Jan 24, 2011
El Chorro

Erik W wrote:
I doubt Red Bull gives a shit that a handful of climbers - who likely weren't buying their product to begin with - won't buy any in the future because of their [our] objection to Lama's actions. For RB it's all about press and buzz, especially in the EXTREME teen market... and for them, ethics aren't even on the radar. Only place where our voice has any weight is with the climbing companies that sponsor Lama. Tell them that you will not buy their ropes and shoes as long as they continue to sponsor Lama and his actions in Patagonia (and add that you'll be telling everyone you know about the horseshit Lama is up to and the companies that are supporting his actions via their sponsorship). Mammut, Sportiva.... who else?


Sorry to say that the sponsors don't give a shit either. I went as high up on the food chain as I could with Mammut over the expedition they sponsored for Lama and others in Malaysia. I won't go into it here, but I was thoroughly disappointed with how they handled their business in SE Asia and called Mammut to tell them how I felt. They blew me off over and over, always claiming that they had no responsibility over Lama or his actions in Malaysia. It ended with me politely explaining that I did not contact them with the intention of boycotting their products, but after the way they had treated me that I would never again by a Mammut product and that I would be telling this story every time I got the chance. At the time, I was managing a popular climbing shop in SE Asia, an area where Mammut shares a large part of the market. They didn't seem to care one bit.

For companies this size, it's all about the numbers. The number of people that would have to boycott Mammut for them to be hurt enough to drop Lama is huge... and it would never happen. That's the way the world works. And that's why I buy from Misty Mountain, Wired Bliss, etc.


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By Monomaniac
Administrator
From Morrison, CO
Jan 24, 2011
Pulling a small roof at 2/3 height on Mission Impossible.  Adam Sanders photo.

I'm sorry, I haven't followed the whole story. What exactly are Lama's crimes again?

It all sounds much lower-impact than Alex Lowe's et al's 1999 Great Trango Tower expedition:


"We all agreed on the need for a major sponsor...I found myself in a meeting at the San Francisco headquarters of an internet company called Quokka...The North Face accepted our proposal to make a film of the expedition."

"We arrived in basecamp June 22 with close to 10,000 pounds in porterage "

"We'd fixed close to 3400 feet of rope"

"Tonight we had three interviews with radio stations back home. Our Yaesu radio actually had a phone patch through our satellite phone in basecamp, enabling us to send and receive calls right from the wall"

"The supply of 100 rivets was also getting down to the scraps."

"one of the batteries for the power drill was dead."


"In addition to producing the material for the web site, we were working closely with Mike and Jimmy to get film footage. We needed the string of fixed lines so that the two of them could move up and down the wall freely. We also dedicated two days for filming re-leads on some of the most photogenic pitches."

"Our power drill is dead, and I'm too tired to hand-drill the 3/8-inch holes needed to hold us and our bags."


Bolts on Great Trango Tower, placed by Alex Lowe, Jared Ogden & Mark Synnot, paid for by anyone who owns The North Face apparel.
Bolts on Great Trango Tower, placed by Alex Lowe, Jared Ogden & Mark Synnot, paid for by anyone who owns The North Face apparel.


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By Dave Swink
From Boulder, Co
Jan 24, 2011

Mike,

I learn a lot from threads on ethics when they are civil, so I am interested to see you presenting another view. However, I don't completely understand some of your points.

Mike Anderson wrote:
Lead-bolting from hooks is a technicality loop-hole that is stylistically no different from rap bolting


Really? I have not done either, but climbing above the last bolt, placing hooks and hanging from them to drill sounds a lot harder than just rappeling to hang securely while drilling. Certainly, you could fall while on lead but the same skill requirement/risk doesn't seem to be there on rappel. Can you explain why they are equivalent?

Mike Anderson wrote:
Anyone notice that the previous post on Haley's blog is a story about climbing with known rap-bolter, Tommy Caldwell? This issue is dripping with hypocrisy, but it's not just from Red Bull.


I don't follow the source of the hypocrisy. Are you suggesting that Colin is hypocritical when he disparages rap-bolting if he climbs with someone who has done it? The article does not seem to suggest that Colin and Tommy did any rap-bolting while climbing together.


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By Erik W
From Bay Area, CA
Jan 24, 2011
North face of Ama Dablam - taken on approach to Kongma La.

Created an online petition to ask Lama's sponsors to stop their support of his bolting actions in Patagonia. Signing the petition will automatically send emails to the CEO of Mammut Sports Group AG (that was a doozy to find), La Sportiva S.p.A. (Italy), Red Bull GmbH, Red Bull Media House GmbH, and Lama's promotion agent. Figured time is of the essence on this one, so better to get something out ASAP than nothing out at all.

www.change.org/petitions/view/tell_david_lamas_sponsors_to_s>>>


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By Peter Franzen
Administrator
From Phoenix, AZ
Jan 24, 2011
Belay

Erik W wrote:
I doubt Red Bull gives a shit that a handful of climbers - who likely weren't buying their product to begin with - won't buy any in the future because of their [our] objection to Lama's actions. For RB it's all about press and buzz, especially in the EXTREME teen market... and for them, ethics aren't even on the radar. Only place where our voice has any weight is with the climbing companies that sponsor Lama. Tell them that you will not buy their ropes and shoes as long as they continue to sponsor Lama and his actions in Patagonia (and add that you'll be telling everyone you know about the horseshit Lama is up to and the companies that are supporting his actions via their sponsorship). Mammut, Sportiva.... who else?


For every serious climber who decides to boycott Sportiva over this, there are a few dozen people who will buy their shoes and boots from REI unaware of these transgressions.

And besides, we'd just be one more whining group for them to deal with. I'm sure Red Bull gets a handful of complaints every time they film some mountain biker ripping down a fragile Utah hillside, but it's not worth their time to properly address it or acknowledge that a handful of people don't like it.


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By Erik W
From Bay Area, CA
Jan 24, 2011
North face of Ama Dablam - taken on approach to Kongma La.

Regarding the petition, if any of you are on other climbing sites as well (especially EU, UK and USA ones), maybe start a thread there and post the link. Here's a shortened link for tweets etc:

bit.ly/foXVJd


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By rgold
From Poughkeepsie, NY
Jan 24, 2011
The traverse out to the Yellow Ridge on the Dogstick Ridge link-up.  Photo by Myriam Bouchard

I think the climbing world asked for this one. The Maestri route has got to be among the worst places in the world to take some kind of "ethical" stance. It should have been chopped as soon as it was put up. Then we could have a meaningful conversation about appropriate style.

Instead, legions of climbers, many of them well-known and highly respected, climbed the route while complaining about what an abomination it is. Yes, they did it in a better "style," but they still clipped a bunch of Maestri's bolts.

The route basically became a classic, and all those who did it and wrote about it and promoted their own ascents of it legitimized the whole sorry enterprise and set the stage for the logical next step in a process of degradation already well under way.

Don't get me wrong, I think that there may be some value in marshaling as much protest as possible, late in the game though it may be. But the real issue, going forward, is going to be whether we manage to keep a bright sharp line separating sport climbing and traditional climbing on our small home crags, because it is there that attitudes are bred and perspectives lost.


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By cjdrover
From Somerville, MA
Jan 24, 2011
Taken at MWV Icefest 2014.

There have been a lot of good points raised here. Here's my $0.02:

- There have certainly been far worse ethical and stylistic transgressions in the history of climbing. But, isn't the point to keep moving forward? To keep improving? David Lama's Cerro Torre project, has, IMHO, been a step backward.

- His new plan of rap-bolting the headwall, in and of itself, is probably not worthy of protest. However, he should realize that now that he is under the spotlight of public scrutiny every small misstep becomes a big deal. People are looking for evidence that he learned his lesson - obviously, he hasn't.

- The thing that bugs me more than anything is that all the bolts last year were there so that the film crew could get great shots. Sorry, but bolting so you can make a new movie is lame. Many, many photographers have managed to capture amazing footage and videos without retrobolting, and many of them, climbers themselves, have managed to do so while actually participating in the climb.

Anyways I'm not arguing that this is the biggest problem going on right now, but it is a visible and public step backwards, and deserves attention. You can be sure Red Bull will be publicizing the hell out of it when he's done.


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By John Maguire
From Boulder, CO
Jan 25, 2011
Bastille Crack Final Pitch

Mike Anderson wrote:
emphasis added by me This is the problem with internet witch hunts. You don't know what is or isn't going on. Prior restraint (which is what you are suggesting) is one of the worst forms of oppression. The angry mobs need to disperse until you have something to be angry about. Continue to be outraged by the past, if it makes you feel better, but censoring people for "what you imagine they are gonna do" is abhorrent and you should be ashamed of yourselves. And seriously, "horrors"? Aren't you exaggerating a little bit?


+1


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