By John Donovan
On 4 June I wrote to Shell GameChanger advising I had been contacted by a gentlemen who claims to have disclosed a variety of potentially highly lucrative innovative ideas to Shell GameChanger over more than 15 years.
The person in question who does not wish to disclose his identity at the moment has made a number of allegations and supplied examples of his email correspondence with Shell GameChanger as proof that he has been in contact with the organisation.
I supplied Shell with examples of his email correspondence with Shell GameChanger.
I asked Shell if the correspondence is authentic? There was no response.
The inventor in question believes that his innovative proposals may have revolutionised the shale oil and gas industry and if that is the case, would obviously like to receive due credit and compensation.
He believes that Dr. Harold Vinegar (no longer with Shell) may have confirmatory information about one gamechanger idea he submitted.
He is concerned that other innovations he disclosed to Shell may also emerge without credit or payment to him and instead patents and plaudits will wrongly be credited to Shell GameChanger employees and/or the GameChanger organisation.
The gentlemen approached me because he says that he has tried to contact Gamechanger in a genuine attempt to try to resolve the situation amicably, but his correspondence is being ignored.
I asked Shell to kindly let me know by today if the company intended to either respond to my email, or intended to contact the inventor direct to resolve the matter without further involvement on my part.
Since Michiel Brandjes is supposedly my designated contact at Royal Dutch Shell Plc I sent him a copy of my email to Shell GameChanger.
There was no response from Shell GameChanger or Royal Dutch Shell Plc.
I do not have the expertise or the information from Shell files to make any judgement on the merits of the claims made.
It is however less than confidence inspiring that Shell encourages people to submit ideas and then ignores representations made when an inventor has concerns over whether his ideas have been exploited without due credit or payment.
Below is an email the inventor received in December 2012 that appears to provide proof that he has submitted ideas to the organisation.
It appears that the warning I have displayed on royaldutchshellplc.com is well-founded.
From: Hans.H.Haringa <Hans.H.Haringa@shell.com>
Sent: Mon, Dec 3, 2012 6:39 am
Subject: <FYI> Shell GameChanger request for your help
Dear Madam / Sir:
You have received two personalized e-mails (23 Nov. and 30 Nov.) from Meijling & Sarneel Notaries [firstname.lastname@example.org] requesting your help in testing a radical new technology under development by a USA based Company called Knack ( http://www.knack.it/ ).
I would like to assure you that this is a genuine request for help by Shell GameChanger and not some sort of dubious phishing attempt. In the next couple of paragraphs I hope to answer what it is we are trying to do, the approach we take and why we think it is important.
The role of Shell GameChanger is to identify and work with idea proponents who come forward with potential disruptive innovations. A disruptive innovation is an innovation that helps create a new market and value network, and eventually goes on to disrupt an existing market and value network (over a few years or decades) displacing an earlier technology. In this particular instance we work with Knack, who have developed technology that ‘measures’ personality traits. Numerous applications can be envisaged for their technology in for example how we recruit, develop and deploy human capital.
How does the Knack technology work?
Knack technology combines behavioral science, gaming technology, and data analytics to build predictive signatures of performance. Knack games capture rich behavioral data-streams. Game methodology removes socially desirable answering and is intrinsically motivating. Games stand in stark contradistinction to shallow and data-poor self-report or task-assessments of traits and abilities. The rich data from Knack games can be used to predict a wide range of traits and abilities, from social intelligence and personality to creativity and fluid intelligence, and to build outcome-specific behavioral signatures.
Why is Shell GameChanger interested?
Shell GameChanger is collaborating with Knack to discover a so called ‘innovation signature’. If such an ‘innovation signature’ exists it could help us in the identification of innovators and the triaging of submitted ideas at a scale previously unattainable. Such capability, once in place, could be a real differentiator in a world where the ability to identify and unleash innovation provides real competitive advantage.
Why would we like your help?
At some stage during the past 15+ years you have been involved with Shell GameChanger. Involvement means that you have submitted one or more ideas to Shell GameChanger. The last majority of the ideas submitted did not get progressed further, some of them successfully graduated from GameChanger when so called Proof of Concept was reached. But all 1400+ recipients of our request for help have something in common: you all ‘fit’ into the broad category of innovator. And this allows us assuming that the theory works in practice, to calibrate the Knack technology and derive such an innovation signature.
I hope the above explains somewhat better what we try to achieve and why we ask for your help. If you decide to participate, please use the personalized link that you can find in the e-mail from Meijling & Sarneel Notaries [email@example.com].
Thank You for your help!
PERMANENT WARNING POSTED ON MY WEBSITE: DO NOT DISCLOSE YOUR IDEAS TO SHELL GAMECHANGER WITHOUT TAKING EVERY POSSIBLE PRECAUTION. Shell management has ample funds to pay for intellectual property but prefers to steal it from small businesses and in our experience, gives its full backing to dishonest managers willing to do its bidding. We have sued Shell repeatedly in the High Court for the theft of our Intellectual Property. It is doubtful if anyone can match our dire experience in dealing with this ruthless unscrupulous serial poacher of other parties ideas. Expect threats, legal machinations and sinister action from Shell and its spooks if you object to having your ideas stolen.