A Koi Sues Kelp; Protests Run Rampant
For the past two days, much controversy has circled around the infamous restaurant Kelp. The group "Neopets against Kelp " (NAK) has rapidly gained momentum, and has had a large impact on the businesses earnings. It has sparked such a large boycott that Kelp's owner, Mono Scorpiochi, will be holding a press conference sometime in the next two to six weeks. The biggest question for all onlookers is: why? What would cause such a harsh backlash?
It began with a married Koi couple on their big night out. Allegedly, the duo sat down at clothed table and began the meal the way anyone else would: appetizer and drinks. As always, Kelp readily provided them with their orders with good service and a smile. Then, conflict arose while ordering their meals.
According to NAK's website, NAKmovement, "Mr. Koiski, the husband, politely asked what was contained in the 'Fish Special.' The waiter simply laughed and said that the type of fish was part of the secret ingredient. As Mr. Koiski insisted, he was given the same answer every time. Mrs. Koiski joined in at this point, stating it was a valid question needing a valid answer. The waiter began raising his voice, and said that the ingredients were a company secret and that the couple needed to order something. The couple continue to insist for the type of fish, and they were eventually kicked out."
Although the event happened last month, it did not get attention until Mr. Koiski began filing a lawsuit against Kelp two weeks after the incident. Neopian Times did manage to get a short interview with him while he was on his way to negotiate with the owner of Kelp.
Neopian Times: Many questions have arisen about the details of the incident. One of which asks why you, a fish, were considering the fish special. Would you please clarify?
Mr. Koiski: Gladly. I was NOT going to order the fish special. I simply wanted to know its contents. Many fish petpets have been subject to being cooked by unethical restaurants in the past. Not only are many of these petpets becoming endangered, but they think just as cognitively as any Warf or Kadoatie. Basically, they're cooking animals that are Warfs in a fish bodies! Sadly, they aren't as protected as dog or cat petpets, so their vices go unannounced.
NT: Many Neopians eat their catches after fishing. Do you find this unethical?
MK: Of course not. In fact, if they didn't look so much like me, I myself might eat them. The fish found in the whirlpools are a step below petpets on the evolutionary ladder, and are much less intelligent than fish petpets or Koi's. Everyone needs protein, and fish is a great way to get that. But once you involve fish petpets, animals capable of compassion and love, then it becomes a horrible thing.
NT: Have you ever considered that the fish special might contain. . .
MK: Koi?! No; That's absolutely disgusting and sickens me to think about. Sloth himself wouldn't do something so evil. I'm only concerned that they are hurting innocent animals that aren't being unprotected enough.
NT: Why do you feel so passionate about protecting these fish petpets?
MK: Because no one else is. Many just assume that because you eat fish you catch out of the pond that all small fish are like that. Maybe it's because I am a fish Neopet, but it really angers me that people don't think that this is a big deal.
NT: What would you like to say to everyone reading this article?
MK: First of all, know that I am NOT suing for ANY money- Neopoints, Neocash, Dubloons, or any other kind of currency. I just want the ingredients of the Fish Special to be released to the public. We have a right to know what we're eating! But above all, understand that fish petpet trafficking is a big deal. In fact, it's a huge deal. These animals are just like YOUR petpet. If you have a heart, you'll try to help with this issue in any way you can.
Fish petpet trafficking has been on a steady rise ever since petpets have been sold more and more from all different kinds of stores. Getting fish in bulk from a fishing hole requires large and expensive equipment requiring constant upkeep, as well as well paid staff. Buying petpet fish is seen as the easy way out. Additionally, laws against serving petpets consists of small fines- many criticize this as a slap on the wrist for petpet cruelty. (On the other end of the spectrum, Warf and Kadoatie trafficking is practically nonexistent. )
Although Kelp has not held any interviews, they have made one statement: "We are insulted that Neopians would think we would drop to such a low level as to cook a petpet. We pride ourselves with having the best ingredients in all of Neopia. The reason we do not- and will not- release our secret recipe is because we don't want it stolen. It is our right to protect our restaurant, and we will continue to exercise that right. "
We managed to get some statements from one of the most well known and profitable predictors: Kantroni the Techo, the head analyst at Eastern Data Analysis. He told us, "This is a fight between the rights of an individual vs. the rights of a business. Does a person deserve to know what they are being given, or does the business have the right to withhold that information? It's too early for correct conclusions, but the outcomes for this are going to have a big impact on both parties involved, no matter what happens."
As for what is currently happening, Mr. Koiski has not withdrawn his lawsuit, and there have been many picketers around Kelp that have reportedly driven away customers. Rumors are circulating that Kelp might hire some of the Neoforce to remove the protesters, but these have in no way been confirmed. Neopian Times will continue to report on this important issue.