Thursday, June 18, 2015

IBJJF takes a stand to protect .... what exactly?

Here's an email exchange I had with IBJJF staff. Read from the bottom up.

On Jun 17, 2015 6:49 PM, Rebecca Silva <> wrote:

Hi Georgette,

we never had a problem with you at the event. You are definately right about that. You were always professional with while working for us and I appreciate that.
However, its our police that people who have an active voice/take stands (i'm sorry for the language barrier) should not be added to our staff. Our staff should ne neutral.
I wrote you that because I believe its best to be honest. I agree that you have the right to have your opnions and we have the right to have our polices.

Thank you,


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On Wed, Jun 17, 2015 at 4:12 PM, Georgette Oden <> wrote:

By the way, there were no issues at Seattle Open. And if it helps, of course I will always behave, as I have always in the past, with complete professionalism. My rights to free speech stop at the door of the workplace, which of course includes the IBJJF. Thanks :-)

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On Jun 17, 2015 5:52 PM, Rebecca Silva <> wrote:
Hi Georette,

Thank you for your interest on helping us out.

You do work very well in our events. However, you are a very active blogger in our community.
IBJJF avoids as much as possible to take sides on controversial situations that are not our business. Because of this reason, we may not have in our staff team a person who may or may not like one of our athletes.

I hope you understand my situation, but I cannot add you to the staff team at this point.

Thank you,

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Georgette Oden <>
Date: Thu, Jun 11, 2015 at 2:14 PM
Subject: Austin Open
To: Jacob Vasquez <>, Event Staff <>

Need staff? I moved back and happy to work the open....




Orlando Fussioso said...

God forbid the world of martial arts have members who demonstrate the courage to "take stands" and "voice" their opinions. That courage should run from the top down but sadly, it doesn't. It's amazing, well maybe it isn't, the effect money can have on how people rationalize.

If Helio Gracie were still alive would they even let him enter the building? Just read his 2001 Playboy interview; he wasn't shy about giving his opinions. His views on women and homosexuality were far from what is considered tolerable in the US today (though understandable given his age and cultural upbringing).

J.B. said...

I wish that I could get banned in solidarity with you, but I'd never give my time to the IBJJF in the first place.

Bobby and Amanda said...

That's too bad. Maybe they're trying to avoid an ugly situation where a participant or coach decides they're going to make a scene in front of everyone about something they don't agree with that you wrote in your blogs. Do you know who else is getting/has been banned due to being "outspoken" in the BJJ community?

Georgette said...

None to my knowledge. Nor has William Burkhardt.