The Johns Hopkins University series on Entrepreneurship
Edited by Gideon D. Markman and Phillip H. Phan
Chapter 7: Non-market Players’ Disruptive Campaigns Against Firms
Theodore L. Waldron Over the last few years, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) campaigned against the producers and consumers of Australian wool. This campaign pushed premier clothing manufacturers and Australian wool producers to alter their wool harvesting technique. A series of advertisements and protests also affected several large clothing manufacturers – including Timberland, Abercrombie & Fitch, and Adidas. PETA also contacted Australian wool farmers, and demanded the development of more humane wool harvesting practices. During the course of this campaign, the industry association for Australian wool producers initiated a costly public relations campaign to counteract negative public perceptions of its activities, and funded intensive research and development (R&D) efforts to replace its harvesting practice. Increasingly, non-market players, such as PETA, act against firms to shape corporate competitive practices (Baron, 2001, 2003; Doh, 2002; Guay et al., 2004; Yaziji & Doh, 2009). Non-market players are labeled differently by different scholars; activists (Baron & Diermeier, 2007; den Hond & de Bakker, 2007), secondary stakeholders (Savage et al., 1991), stakeholder groups (Rowley, 1997), non-governmental organizations (Teegen et al., 2004), and social movement organizations (McCarthy & Zald, 1977). I refer to these entities as non-market players, and focus on those that operate as independent organizations with social objectives, ideologies, and identities (den Hond & de Bakker, 2007; Rehbein et al., 2004; Rowley & Moldoveanu, 2003). Other examples of non-market players include Greenpeace, Earth First, ACT UP, and the Rainforest Action Network. Competitive dynamics research specifies the antecedents, mechanisms, and consequences of inter-firm rivalry in product markets (Chen, 1996;...