Talk:John Browne, Baron Browne of Madingley

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Family details[edit]

John Browne was born in Hamburg, Germany. His father was a BP employee serving as an officer because of the recent war. (http://www.bp.com/genericarticle.do?categoryId=98&contentId=2002278) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 2005 62.245.82.16 (talkcontribs) 10:22, 20 April (UTC)

Speculation[edit]

What is the purpose speculating about Browne's sexual orientation in this stub? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by 216.193.23.3 (talkcontribs) 19:42, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Height[edit]

I see that 'He is a short man' has just been added. He is undoubtedly a short man, but I wonder whether his height needs to be included. roundhouse 07:51, 12 September 2006 (UTC)

I've searched, but can't find his height given anywhere. While this might seem to be trivia, in a profile on him on BBC radio, they mentioned that he was a small, impeccably-dressed man. I hadn't realised he was below average height before I saw the reports on his resignation. I think his height would be a valid piece of information to include, if we can find it. JRawle (Talk) 13:43, 5 May 2007 (UTC)

Lord Browne is 5'6". (Chunda18 19:32, 13 May 2007 (UTC))

Clarification[edit]

What is the position the last paragraph states he will be abandoning? Philbradley 22:01, 19 December 2006 (UTC)

BP or Browne?[edit]

A lot of the information in this article seems to relate to BP's activities rather than Browne himself. Of course there is a degree of overlap, but I think there's a little too much here... 128.62.90.140 19:11, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

I agree, we also need a heading 'Legacy'. For example in the light of the current 'mishap' off the Louisiana coast, the legacy of lord Browne has been called into question. For example by the author John Bower ("Oil")on the website 'Daily beast'. He attests that it was Lord Browne's zealous cost cutting and outsourcing of even vital technical knowledge that lead to the many accidents that occurred. I dont know if these statements are correct or not. But indeed the career description is a too bland. What did the man stand for? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Depotz (talkcontribs) 11:30, 2 July 2010 (UTC)

LGBT:Directors[edit]

Removed category LGBT:Directors, which is for film and theatre directors (not corporate directors). Myc2001 16:40, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

Gay website[edit]

Great job on the immediate update. See the unsigned comment above, from 29 July 2006, regarding the speculation. As it turns out, the speculation was quite relevant! Bearian 20:09, 1 May 2007 (UTC)

Let us not call www.suitedandbooted.com a "gay dating website". Let's be clear: IT IS A GAY "ESCORT"/RENT BOY WEBSITE. You have to PAY to get any of the young men advertised on that site to come meet you. That is a PROSTITUTE, NOT a "date".
I think we've got to include that it was more than a "gay website", that it was in fact a prostitute site. It is key to understanding why he committed perjury. He obviously lied and said that he met Jeff while exercising in Battersea Park because he did not want it known that he had taken a prostitute as a lover. It's very common in the gay scene and the rent boys in such situations usually view the whole thing as a job and someone like Lord Browne as a "john". Thus the whole thing revolves around: (1) Browne lied/committed perjury, (2) he did so to hide the fact that his lover was a prostitute (and might therefore have been a prostitute all along). To simply say that he met Jeff via a "gay website" leaves a reader wondering why Browne committed perjury and just didn't tell the truth. It's because Jeff was a prostitute. The proof is that you have to pay money to meet any of the boys that advertise on that site. Thus, prostitution is key to understanding what happened and thus must be mentioned. The fact that Jeff was a prostitute specialising in bondage and fetish sex only increased the pressure for Browne to lie/perjure himself. It explains what happened, why he did it.
You have a point here; I had myself wondered why he lied on this rather minor matter (and still do wonder - avoiding a minor embarrassment at the risk of a major one). Can you find some less sensationalist way of putting it (eg what does the BBC site say)? Also, I don't think the article should include the website address. -- roundhouse 16:16, 3 May 2007 (UTC)
Could somebody tell me the difference between (sexual) relationship and prostitution. Formerly I hat girlfriends or boyfriends and made gifts to them or invited them for dinner, I always paid the bill, even for holidays... Then I was married for 2 years; my wife got divorced from me and I had to pay her 250'000 CHF. For four years now I have lovers whom I pay for sex only (no other gifts, no holidays etc.) I have more fun, and it is much efficient than anything I had before. My recent lover relationship lasts longer than 2 years now it is much ceaper than maintaining a marriage... Wo, what's the difference??? I don't get the point. 84.75.210.113 00:48, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

I don't think it "leaves the reader wondering" at all. He lied in court because he had been lying all along about how he met Chevalier. The reasons for the lie at this point are speculation. Encyclopedias are about facts. Whatever the intial method of introduction, the relationship obviously became a long term one and went beyond prostitution. If Browne says he lied because he was embarrassed because he met Chevalier through a fetish and bondage prostitution website, then that should be included in the article. The speculations and sensationalism of The Sun are just that, not facts. Quakerman 16:02, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

Quakerman, I am not saying in my edit that Browne did it because he was embarassed that he met Jeff in a john-prostitute relationship. I am simply noting that and letting the reader speculate. My post is not speculation, just a recitation of the facts. I mean, if we follow your reasoning, then we should not note anywhere in the entire entry on Browne that it was a gay relationship. Why not just refer to "his lover" and leave out that it that he is gay? No, it has to stay in, in order to even begin to understand why such a prominent man perjured himself on how he met Jeff. But, again, my edit does not include speculation - that is simply on this Discussion page, and in the reader's mind.

Quakerman: Also, would you please not delete the link to The Sun article. That is vandalism, and you should know better than to do that.

Please sign your comments. Your edit does include speculation, because you are giving the reasons that Browne lied. How do you know? Has he told you? Has he told anyone? No, of course not. So everything you say above is your speculation as to why he might of lied. When and if he comes out and says why he lied, it should be included in the article. Until he does, none of what you say can be substantiated. I would draw your attention to the warning about living persons at the top of this page. 16:15, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

Quakerman: Okay, I will allow that it is The Sun that says that it is a "bondage and fetish sex site". I mean, the site has never said, "This is a bondage and fetish sex website". But if you had ever seen the site, you would agree that it is a bondage and fetish sex website. I mean, why do you think they named it "suitedandbooted.com"??? But as for it being a prostitute site and not a dating site, I'm sorry but that isn't The Sun saying that. THE RENT BOYS HAVE THEIR HOURLY RATES LISTED ON THE SITE!!!!!! What more proof do you want than that???? Do you want the site to say, "This is a prostitution site"???? No, they claim they are an "escort" service and they list charge rates in the hundreds of pounds per hour. When was the last time you went out on a date and agreed a per hour rate before you met the girl? Duh? Duh??? The bottom line is, Jeff is a prostitute, and was a prostitute when Browne met him. Browne met him as a prostitute. He paid Jeff hundreds of pounds an hour to meet him (and do who knows what).Betathetapi545

Prostitution is paying for sex. Paying for a date by the hour is just that. It may include sex (probably does in many cases) but does not necessarily. Therefore, the word "prostitution" is inflamatory in this context as it implies that Browne went to the website looking for a prostitute. Can you say for certain that Browne ever paid Chevalier for sex? If not, the reference to prostitution in this context is not factual. Escort website is acceptable. Quakerman 16:42, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

Quakerman, your assertion is laughable. Nobody pays for a date. And certainly not £400 per hour. LOL. And dates don't show up in bondage gear. LOL. If Browne was looking for a long-term relationship from the get-go, he would have gone to someplace like Yahoo and looked for gay men. That's what gay men do. You do not look for a date on "escort service" websites. They don't "escort" anybody anywhere. Their photos on www.suitedandbooted.com shows them in bondage gear. Do you think Lord Browne was looking to be escorted to some function by a guy wearing bondage gear??? LOL. There is no such thing as an "escort" - it's a euphamism for "prostitute" - that way, they can advertise in places like the International Herald Tribune. It may have evolved into a "relationship", but it started out as a john-prostitute relationship. That's probably why he went to such lengths - spent money on lawyers - even perjured himself - to keep it out of print. The casual reader has to know this in order to understand why a man in his position would commit perjury over what, on the surface, is a relatively minor issue, i.e. where he met the guy. I mean, if you met your wife at a sorority dance, you probably wouldn't mind this being known . . . . but if you met her when you ordered a prostitute, you wouldn't want ANYBODY to know this. Now do you understand?Betathetapi545

I have also taken out "The Sun" referring to varoius things. It's not The Sun that is doing that, it's www.suitedandbooted.com. The Sun does not say that it is a prostitution website. But if you go to Suitedandbooted.com, you will see that each of the bondage dates costs hundreds of pounds per hour.Betathetapi545

Obviously you have a great deal of experience with escort agencies! LOL. I said that in many cases, it can involve prostitution, but it doesn't in all cases. People do pay a lot of money to have a good looking young lady (or man) on their arm at an event. The point is that in this case, there is no evidence that Browne engaged in prostitution with Chevalier or anyone else. You have no evidence to back up the use of the word prostitute in the article. You and others are free to draw your own conclusions, but your speculation has no place in an encyclopedia which is by definition factual. Quakerman 17:55, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

I never said that Browne engaged in paid sex with Jeff. All I am doing is stating fact that the website (suitedandbooted.com) is a prostitution website. That is fact. You (and any readers) are free to draw any conclusions that you want to as to what Browne and Jeff did or did not do on their £400/hour "date". LOL. Also, please do not engage in vandalism by deleting the link to www.suitedandbooted.com. That has to stay in. I have warned you before about vandalising this entry by deleting links (when you deleted link to The Sun article). Please do not delete either of these links again. Finally, you are reverting the entry back to incorrect statements - that The Sun says that it is a prostitution site - The Sun didn't bother to point the obvious out - that is done by the Suitedandbooted.com website itself where it advertises the "escorts" at hundreds of pounds an hour. More to the point - a date is obtained from a site like Yahoo where you pay the website to be a member (and it is a nominal fee). Prostitution is where you agree beforehand to pay the date (not the website), and you do it by the hour, and it is in the hundreds of pounds an hour. Thank you.Betathetapi545

You are drawing conclusions and implying guilt by association. If Browne did not pay for prostitution, the reference is irrelevant. Until we know the facts, let's stick with what the Sun actually reported. The link to suitedandbooted.com is redunant as it is linked from the Sun article. Please keep your speculation and POV out of the article, and stick to facts. Quakerman 18:18, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

I am not drawing conclusions. If you read my comment above, I am leaving the speculation to the reader. All we know is that he met Jeff through a gay prostitution website. The Sun is not be-all and end-all for this entry. Suitedadnbooted.com is also a very relevant link - it's where he met Jeff. For some reason, you don't want the entry to have that link. Maybe it's because it is embarassing to Browne??? As for your stating "Please keep your speculation and POV out of the article, and stick to facts", I would say the same to you. Just because you state that in a comment, that does not make it true. This is a comment tactic on Wikipedia. It is unfortunate that you have stooped to using it. Again, please do not vandalise the entry by deleting relevant links. Thanks in advance. Betathetapi545

The website is referenced in the Sun article, so anyone who is interested in what it offers can follow the link. What is or is not embarrassing to Browne is not the point. The facts are the point. You are the one who seems intent in painting Browne's actions in the worst possible light. Wikipedia is about neutral POV. You refuse to accept that Browne could have used the site for other than finding a prostitute. The fact that he had a four year relationship with Chevalier indicates that he was looking for a relationship, not prostitution. Yes, the site may offer all kinds of things, but unless you have evidence that Browne went to the site looking for a prostitute (and the long term nature of the relationship as I say tends to indicate he didn't) then highlighting that aspect of what the site offers amounts to innuendo and character assasination, not facts. Yes, let's leave it to the readers to decide for themselves without using loaded words in the article. Quakerman 19:40, 3 May 2007 (UTC)

Quakerman, again you are pushing your POV. You write, "The fact that he had a four year relationship with Chevalier indicates that he was looking for a relationship, not prostitution." Says who? We don't know that. Perhaps he was, perhaps he wasn't. It could just as easily have been a 4-year rent-boy relationship, i.e. never progressed beyond simply being a relationship strictly based on sex. We don't know. All we can do is state the facts and let readers speculate/make their own conclusions. However, the vast majority of people visit "personals" sites in order to find a companion, not prostitute sites. Do you know ANYBODY that finds dates on prostitute sites? When you were dating and looking for a wife, did you find your dates by ordering prostitutes??? Do you know ANYBODY that has done that??? I think you have watched the film "Pretty Girl" too many times. But if you (or any reader) wants to think that Browne ordered a rent boy in order to try to find a companion rather than use a gay personals site, then that is your prerogative. As for "painting Browne's actions in the worst possible light", I am doing no such thing. Browne did that. You simply don't want the sordid things he did (ordered a rent boy less than half his age) shown to the public. Personally, I think we should put a picture of Jeff up on Browne's Wikipedia entry. I will search for a photo that Wikipedia can legally put up.Betathetapi545

I am not putting my POV. I am putting an alternative interpretation on what we know, something that you seem incapable of doing, simply to make the point that we don't know all the facts in this case and to make a definitive statement one way or another about Browne's intentions or motives is premature, especially as we are dealing with living people who could sue Wikipedia (and us) for libel. As for the rest of your comments, using words like "sordid" proves my point I'm afraid. You are simply trying to besmirch Browne and judge him before all the facts are in, and that has no place in an encyclopedia. Quakerman 07:25, 4 May 2007 (UTC)

I object strongly to the website being in the article at all, and the clause re its activities. It is alleged (by the Sun, occasionally known to err) that this website has something to do with it. The Sun alleges many things. Even if true it is not material suitable for an encyclopedia. A link to the article in the Sun is sufficient. (I would much prefer a link to a more authoritative source such as the bbc.) -- roundhouse 12:36, 5 May 2007 (UTC)

House of Lords[edit]

Peterlewis (talk · contribs) added the comment that Browne "has not apparently attended any debates in the House [of Lords]". This is incorrect as TheyWorkForYou.com shows him speaking on at least three occasions [1] (admittedly not since 2005), and that doesn't mean he didn't attend debates on other occasions without speaking. Therefore I've removed this statement. A differently-worded sentence about his attending infrequently might be in order, although it should be backed up with attendance figures, if someone can find them. JRawle (Talk) 22:09, 6 May 2007 (UTC)


Legal questions[edit]

In the text we read: "It is possible that Browne will face charges of perjury for lying to the court over how he met Chevalier." Could anybody tell us what is wrong about not telling the court that his lover was a callboy? What was he accused for? Where is the missing link between his private love affair aund the court? I mean, if my wife asks me whether I have a lover I will surely not admit it. And if I am asked in court in a totally unrelated case whether I have a lover and if so how I met him, I would advise the judge to read books with sexual content if he is interested in this kind of topic and not to specualte about my private life. The fact that I like Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte is my own business, too... 84.75.210.113 00:28, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

And more: Could somebody tell me the difference between (sexual) relationship and prostitution. Formerly I hat girlfriends or boyfriends and made gifts to them or invited them for dinner, I always paid the bill, even for holidays... Then I was married for 2 years; my wife got divorced from me and I had to pay her 250'000 CHF. For four years now I have lovers whom I pay for sex only (no other gifts, no holidays etc.) I have more fun, and it is much efficient than anything I had before. My recent lover relationship lasts longer than 2 years now it is much ceaper than maintaining a marriage... Wo, what's the difference??? I don't get the point. 84.75.210.113 18:00, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

He wasn't "asked in court". The lie (to which Browne has admitted) was contained in a written deposition. This could constitute perjury. The case was about what the Mail on Sunday wanted to publish. Part of the MOS story was that Browne had consistently lied about how he met Chevalier. Browne repeated that lie in his submission to the court as part of his attempt to prevent publication. By saying he did not meet Chevalier the way the MOS said he did he was attempting to discredit the story. Quakerman 18:17, 8 May 2007 (UTC)

Thanks for the reply. I still do not understand the thing about the lie. Let's take an easy example: If MOS writes that I like to spend me week-end with watching TV and I say the is not true in a written deposition (but it is true that I spend me weekens by watching TV), can anybody sue me for this according to british law? 84.75.210.113 11:58, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
Basically the MoS was going to report that Browne met Chevalier on Suited and Booted. Browne had always said they met while jogging in the park. Browne repeated that lie in an effort to discredit the MoS article in an effort to prevent it from being published. In other words, he claimed the MoS was lying about him and therefore the article was libellous. That could be perjury, because what the MoS said was in fact true, by Browne's own later admission. Browne isn't being sued. It is possible he could be charged with perjury. The outcome of the original case was that the MoS was allowed to publish its article. Quakerman 10:29, 15 May 2007 (UTC)

That fact that Brown met this young fellow through an escort website is not, perhaps, a crime in itself. It was simply something that might be misunderstood and judged.Many people who call escorts up do, from what I've read, want sex but not only. They often want a companion as well:someone to talk to before and/or after things get physical. Perhaps this Jeff was a male courtisan: a paid-for lover who provided emotional satisfaction as well as physical.~~ —Preceding unsigned comment added by 132.156.43.8 (talk) 16:01, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

Engineering degree[edit]

This article states that John Browne received an honorary Doctor of Engineering, but does not say he has an earned engineering degree. Does anybody know if he has an earned engineering degree ? H Padleckas (talk) 06:23, 5 November 2009 (UTC)

The article says (I think correctly) that his first degree was in Physics. It seems to me likely that he never made an undergraduate study in Engineering. Physics or Chemistry was quite enough to succeed at BP in those days. Thincat (talk) 19:56, 6 November 2009 (UTC)

Safety Record[edit]

Browne is described by journalist and author Tom Bower as irresponsible for a "ruthless" programme of cost-cutting at BP that compromised safety, and thus the man most responsible for a string of major accidents including the Texas City Refinery explosion (2005) and the Deepwater Horizon explosion (2010).

Complete and utter garbage. I worked for BP between 1999 and 2004 when Browne was Chief Executive. Rather than cutting back on safety, BP actually increased the spend on safety during this period - in fact, I would say that virtually everyone at BP at the time said that the amount of risk reduction and the safety culture was, if anything, too extreme, rather than being insufficient. Texas City and Deepwater Horizon were both symptoms of BP USA's safety culture; it continued to see itself as Amoco, and never took the safety culture of BP seriously. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 85.210.152.67 (talk) 01:22, 15 January 2012 (UTC)

Safety Record[edit]

I work for Browne now, and wanted to raise once again the point made in this Wikipedia entry about Tom Bower's claims and Browne's safety record. In the interests of fairness and balance, would it be fair to add a line saying that "the Baker Panel report found evidence to link cost cutting to safety risks or accidents". That was the conclusion of the Baker Report[1] ("During the course of its review, the Panel did not develop or identify sufficient information to conclude whether BP ever intentionally withheld resources on any safety-related assets or projects for budgetary or cost reasons”). That evidence directly contradicts the claim made in the preceding sentence, and would seem to be a fair addition to this entry. 217.156.180.66 (talk) 16:11, 28 February 2014 (UTC)

  1. ^ http://www.bp.com/liveassets/bp_internet/globalbp/globalbp_uk_english/SP/STAGING/local_assets/assets/pdfs/Baker_panel_report.pdf