Pink Pearls Magazine Issue Nr. 5
presents the European lesbian scene
Anonymous slander campaigns in the European lesbian communities must be stopped!
Press Statement by Pink Pearls Amsterdam
Since December 3rd, 2010, an anonymous group of Amsterdam based young lesbian businesswomen has been executing a slander campaign on social media against newcomers in the lesbian market. They called themselves ‘De Moraalprincessen’ (The Morale Princesses).
On Facebook they named their Facebook group ‘Stop Namaak Garbo’ (Stop Fake Garbo). Their objective was to keep the lesbian market, which in the Netherlands has a potential of about 450.000 customers, closed for newcomers protecting the monopoly of only a few businesses that dominate this niche market. They tried to ban competition. Which is illegal.
One of these newcomers was ‘Garbo Amsterdam’ (recently renamed to ‘Pink Pearls Amsterdam’). The anonymous ‘Moraalprincessen’ used all available means to slander against Garbo Amsterdam’s founder Annelies Hintjes. Apart from the fact that she and her company were labelled as copycats of the so called ‘real Garbo’ (Garbo for Women led by a former business partner), lies and other false rumors were spread aggressively on Facebook and Hyves, the two major social networks in the Netherlands. They did not check their sources nor did they allow Garbo Amsterdam to counter their false accusations.
The information about ‘Garbo Amsterdam’ and later ‘Pink Pearls’ spread by the ‘Moraalprincessen’ was incorrect, falsified and based on false information from Taetske Linting, founder of ‘Garbo for Women’ and former business partner of Annelies Hintjes.
In June 2011 another, also anonymous, group formed itself at Skala Eressos on the Greek island of Lesbos. This group (the ‘Lesbian Veterans of Skala Eressos’) threatened Miss Hintjes and her company Pink Pearls through anonymous e-mails. By public slandering and the publication of a press statement by a German company an attempt was made to frustrate the upcoming travels organized by Pink Pearls Travel (Pink Pearl Amsterdam’s sister company).
The yearly ‘Skala Eressos Women Festival’, which was the goal of these organized travels has been organized by the Greek company ‘Sappho Women’ for over eleven years and founded by Joanna Savva who happens to be the owner of the travel company Sappho Travel.
Sappho Travel too has become a victim of this slander campaign with the objective to push them out of business too.
The connection in all this is that Sappho Women has been supported by Pink Pearls Amsterdam for the last one and a half years with the aim to keep the organizing responsibility of the festival in Greek hands. The companies work together on this and business wise.
On Lesbos lesbian women live and stay for many years now. They come from all over Europe and they see themselves as (and in effect are) the real veterans of the lesbian community based at Skala Eressos. They have been supporting and promoting tourism amongst lesbian women to the island in a positive manner for many years.
Because of the continuing threats and intimidations Pink Pearls went to Lesbos during the September festival period to get in touch with them and local businesses personally. We found that they too want to see the conflict between travel companies on Lesbos resolved as soon as possible. They assured us that Pink Pearls is more than welcome on their island.
A difference of opinion or strategy may never be the cause for businesses to be illegally pushed out of the market by spreading false accusations and slandering. That is the message that we now back up strongly.
Current state of affairs.
Currently a number of investigations are taking place regarding these anonymous slander groups, both in the Netherlands as in Germany. In the Lesbos capitol Mytilini a court case is filed against the German business that is active on Lesbos and that is the perceived brain behind the slander campaign of the ‘Lesbian Veterans of Skala Eressos’.
A lawyer, commissioned by Pink Pearls, has repeatedly requested Taetske Linting to reveal the truth about the previous business relation between ‘Garbo for Women’ and ‘Garbo Amsterdam’ to the public and to declare that she herself has given permission to Annelies Hintjes to use the businessname ‘Garbo Amsterdam’ thereby countering the false accusations that have been made.
It is regarded important that Miss Linting now finally clarifies this to the lesbian community. She is, by staying silent, partially responsible for the current situation in the lesbian market and it would at least be decent to admit how the situation was before the slander campaign started in 2010. This image destruction of the lesbian community has to stop.
Pink Pearls Amsterdam is actively working on stopping the activities of the slander groups. For over 9 months Annelies Hintjes of Pink Pearls is battling for a positive image of the European lesbian sector and for her business Pink Pearls. Anonymous groups are not wanted and the cause of a lot of business and social damage for lesbian businesses and their customers.
Recently ‘De Moraalprincessen’ removed their FaceBook and Hyves accounts. But the damage is done.
Pink Pearls goes public in this story in much more detail as soon as the current investigation is completed.
Pink Pearls Amsterdam.
What else is in this issue?
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