TECH in AMERICA (TiA)

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‘Mario Bros.’ Parody Urges Nintendo to Ensure ‘Slavery’-Free Products (Video)

by Aaron Couch, courtesy HollywoodReportermario_parody_video_a_l[1]

A parody video featuring the famous video game brothers is urging Nintendo to ensure “slave-mined minerals” from the Democratic Republic of Congo are not used in the company’s products.

The video comes from Walk Free, a movement seeking to end modern slavery.

In the video, two men dressed as Mario and Luigi tell a news reporter they’ve discovered 400,000 letters to Nintendo asking the company to audit its supply chain to ensure conflict minerals are not used in its products. The video ends with the plumbers jumping from their virtual world into our real world, with the goal of delivering the letters to Nintendo.

Walk Free has also launched an online game in which the player’s goal is to deliver the letters to Nintendo.

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According to a recent report from the nonprofit group The Enough Project, Nintendo ranks last of 24 major electronic companies when it comes to “making progress in eliminating conflict minerals from their supply chains.”

The report praised Intel, Motorola Solutions, HP and Apple as “pioneers of progress” for taking actions such as tracing the origins of their minerals and supporting aid projects to help the Congo set up a clean mineral trade.

The same report slammed Nintendo, saying the company “has made no known effort to trace or audit its supply chain.”

“Nintendo—as the world’s largest maker of video game machines—should be leading other consumer electronics companies, not lagging behind all of them, in showing the public that they are cleaning up their supply chain,” said Debra Rosen, movement director at Walk Free.

War has plagued Democratic of Congo since 1996 and claimed millions of lives. According to a report this week from Amnesty International, mining in the country has been linked to fighting and human rights abuses.

The campaign, which kicks of Wednesday, is pegged to Nintendo’s shareholders meeting on June 27.

Nintendo has not responded to The Hollywood Reporter’s request for comment. We will update if it does.

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