PETA Names Godaddy.com Bob Parsons With “First-Ever Scummiest CEO of the Year Award”

According to TMZ.com, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has just named the CEO of Godaddy.com with the First-Ever “Scummiest CEO of the Year Award”.

Bob Parsons triggered the controversy after posting an Internet video chronicling his elephant slaying during a trip to Zimbabwe“.

In a copy of a letter that TMZ obtained from PETA sent to Parsons, they “presenting him with its “first-ever Scummiest CEO of the Year Award (Your certificate is on the way)”

PETA “Will be ending our account with Godaddy.com and taking our domain-name business elsewhere and encouraging others to do the same.”

Parsons told TMZ, “I understand PETA has an agenda, but I refuse to go along with their extortion-style practice.”

Parsons claims he was only hunting “problem elephants”  ones that destroy the villagers’ crops … adding, “I stand by my decision to help African villagers.”

You can read PETA’s letter here.

Other publications have attacked Parsons for his elephant kill as well.

Time.com on its blog entitled Why Godaddys CEO Was Wrong:

“Now, there are so many things wrong with this video that it’s hard to know where to start. ”

“First off: is it really appropriate to score a scene of hungry villagers in Zimbabwe tearing apart a dead elephant to the tunes of AC/DC’s “Hells Bells”?”

“And I can’t be the only one who found it creepy that Parsons had outfitted nearly everyone in the area with bright orange GoDaddy baseball caps.”

“Not to mention the fact that this is all taking place in Zimbabwe, a broken country oppressed by the tyrannical Robert Mugabe, where 64% of the population lives under the poverty line and nearly 100% live in fear. This is one step up from taking spring break in North Korea.”

“It’s been a long time since shooting an elephant has been considered fashionable.”

Even on Parsons own blog people are calling him out:

One person Roanna Martin writes:

“I have to tell you, Mr. Parsons, your attempts to excuse your behavior are lean.”

“You are traveling around the world to give money to one of the most corrupt, violent regimes in the world but you excuse that by saying that you are helping people.”

“Instead of shooting wild elephants with a gun (really brave of you by the way) why not do a man vs. elephant hand to hand combat kind of thing? That could bring money to the locals with the right promotion.”

“Tell me this, if your concern is with the people of Zimbabwe, what charitable acts have you performed there?”

Another person a Gene Taylor commented on his blog:

“I am a fan of Mr. Parsons. I am a fan and customer of Go Daddy! ”

“I have been to Zimbabwe. The elephants are NOT killing the crops and family’s that run the farms, Robert Mugabe is.”

“He is a ruthless dictator.”

“He took a prosperous country that use to have the second highest literacy rate in all of Africa and turned it into a killing field for not only it’s wildlife population, but it’s human population as well. It it not the elephant herds that need culling, it is uninformed trophy hunting tourists who pay huge sums of money just for the thrill of the kill.”

Personally, having listened to Mr. Parsons’ speech at DomainFest I walked away knowing he had a take no prisoners , and do whatever the hell I want, kind of attitude.

But when your the head and sold shareholder of a Billion dollar plus company with thousands of employees, its probably an attitude that needs some adjustment.

Comments

  1. says

    Better phrased, godaddy’s bottom line next year:

    A) Higher than now
    B) Lower than now
    C) Same as now

    I guess you could argue higher than now but not as high as it could have been. The different probably wont make a dent for the CEO though.

  2. Steve M says

    … and where will Bob place this sad yet well-deserved testament to his abhorrent killing of one of the most magnificent of God’s creatures to ever grace our Earth.

  3. John Berryhill says

    I agree that PETA is over the top on a lot of stuff, but a stopped clock is right once a day.

    The entire discussion of this issue is based on the PR spin of those with a financial interest in the program. Somehow, there are other countries which manage elephant/human problems without turning it into a commercial venture that, ultimately, incentivizes the creation of new “problems” which happen to bring in rich outsiders…

    Problem Animal Control Strategies in Human-Elephant Conflict Areas of Dande Communal Lands, Zimbabwe: A Study in Sustainability.
    By Mupangwa, J.F., Nyabadza, T., Mberengwa, I. and Chaipa, I.

    Now, I agree, that actually STUDYING the elephant migration routes and leaving them corridors for access to rivers isn’t very sexy. If you can block their migration with crops, and then make a buck shooting them, that’s a much better idea.

    I also agree that PLANTING CHILI PEPPERS around the crops isn’t as interesting as watching a YouTube video of a guy shooting a really big thing.

    So be it.

    There are people called “scientists” who actually manage to figure things out every now and then. It has become so popular to buy into commercially-interested spin and conspiracy theories that we have developed this perverse culture of actually discounting the input of people who have put in the work to study the causes and effects of things.

    I’m pretty much at the point where it has become apparent to me that the simple-minded are going to win. “Hey, there’s a problem here that can be solved with a gun! Yee-haw!”

  4. Don says

    So this dude wants to help i get it he wants to help feed them. I am sure they can get by without his help. They for years. But why take a video of this. Just compensating for something I guess.

    D-bag vs elephant, lets have them go out in the wild without the gun like I said before. You’re not a hunter unless your using a bow and arrow. This guy has all this money and he probably spent 100k on this trip. Why not save that pregnant elephant in which it probably was, doubt that he could tell if it was or not. Probably figured he could kill two at once. It will hurt his business but nothing to the point that he will lose to much sleep over. Even 10 percent would be nothing to him.

    Don

  5. M says

    What he did was 100% legal.
    He has every right to spend his money however he wants!

    I don’t know what peta’s real agenda is, but caring for animals is the last thing those evil people are about.

  6. John Berryhill says

    “What he did was 100% legal.”

    Nobody said otherwise.

    Next year, he is going to Saudi Arabia, to pay for the 100% legal beheading of a woman convicted of adultery.

    How do other countries with elephants manage? Not all of them permit this. Fortunately, the Mugabe government of Zimbabwe, who received money from Parsons for this, is the kind of enlightened law making body that we can all admire.

  7. M says

    “Next year, he is going to Saudi Arabia, to pay for the 100% legal beheading of a woman convicted of adultery”

    John, very funny, you left me without words

  8. says

    “What he did was 100% legal.”
    “who received money”
    ====

    And people wonder why governments are concerned about giving INDIVIDUALS a License.to.Print.Cash with their own Top Level Domains ?

    He who has the PESOS has the Say.Sos ?
    The richest man in the world is in Mexico – one of the lowest standards of living on earth

  9. says

    I love the fact that Parsons has a fair amount of PT Barnum in him, but he went too far here. Put hot girls in a adv and the majority of hot blooded American males will fiercely stand behind you when some group tries to condemn it as sexist or too risque.

    However, this was different and Parsons crossed a line. Yes, we all know that PETA can be over the top, but most people who saw this video had a gnawing feeling in their stomach that this wasn’t cool. And no matter how much Parsons tries to demonize PETA or claim that he was only protecting starving Africans, his Midas touch just lost a lot of shine.

  10. cm says

    As from another blog,

    Its ironic that killing one elephant may end up saving a lot of others.
    Not Bob’s plan…but may get more people involved in finding alternate solutions.

  11. eric rice says

    What about the total disrespect of his customers and employees. He is a CEO with thousands of employees and millions of customers, he has some responsibility to both.

    I have seen several polls now showing about 80% saying they are against the CEO of Go Daddy shooting and videotaping the hunt (these were on news sites and not animal rights sites).

    It would stand that at least 50 percent of his employees are against it and can not speak out at all (for fear of being hunted down by a Marine hit squad).

    “The customer is always right” and it is apparent that instead of saying “hey I will take some of the reaction under advisement” he is instead fighting tooth and nail to disregard any opinion but his own on such a controversial subject.

    Why take on such a controversial subject when you know it is going to offend many of your customers and employees putting many in a really bad decision.

    Why? Because egomaniacs must always do highly controversial things so they are constantly put into a position of “assumed authority.”

    He should spend another $50,000 and his great motivation to help this elephant who has been abused for years in the circus and lives a miserable life:

    Video of Anne the elephant being beaten…

    http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/305092

    A hidden camera has recorded footage of circus workers in the UK kicking a 57-year-old elephant, and striking her with a metal pitchfork.
    Animal Defenders International (ADI) released footage from behind the scenes at the winter quarters of Bobby Roberts Super Circus, (in Polebrook, Northamptonshire) showing Anne, an Asian elephant, being repeatedly struck while tethered to the floor by a short chain. During a three-and-a-half week period 48 strikes were recorded.

    Buy this Elephant Bob since you have such a kind heart.

  12. Don says

    Give it another few weeks. He will forever known as the guy that killed an elephant. Does not matter what he does or gives from this point forward.

    The more money people make the more brighter they think they are. In some cases that is true in this case it is just a guy that has no common sense or empathy towards anything. Which may be ok because people are what they are I guess.

    Yea it’s legal so what, one thing he can’t buy is common sense. It’s also legalto fry up cat shit and eat it, but why would you do that?

    Don

  13. says

    @Eric
    I saw that video last week and it really ticked me off.

    There is an article I read over a year ago and cannot locate. It is about a circus elephant that became enraged and rampaged through a town over a hundered years ago. What caught my eye was an interview with the sheriff years later who shot the elephant and killed it. The locals were overjoyed and considered the sheriff a hero. Surprisingly, the sheriff was upset. He said than when he cornered the animal and looked it in the eye he could feel the elephant’s anger and frustration. There was an intelligence that unnerved him and the killing haunted him ever since.

  14. Mr.T says

    As a result of this mindless stupidity by the CEO himself we will move all our domains away from Godaddy and tell our partners to do the same.

    I always thought Parsons was ok, but this time he’s gone too far.

  15. Mr.T says

    I just received this e-mail from namecheap – I love the initiative!

    Hi **********,

    It’s not often that we would disagree publicly with a competitor, but we at Namecheap are very disturbed by this video of a competitor killing an elephant for sport. Check out the ABC News Report (Warning: Very Graphic!)
    We’ve decided to throw our support behind our Elephant friends by offering domain transfers at a price where we actually lose money.

    Show your protest by saying BYEBYEGD again and transfer your domains to Namecheap for $4.99 for the next 24 hours through 11:59pm EST on 3/31/11 (limit 10 per user, valid for all com/net/org domains).

    On top of that, we’ll donate $1 for each transfer to Save The Elephants at http://www.savetheelephants.org/

    Use coupon code BYEBYEGD and let’s help the Elephants together!

    Regards,
    Team Namecheap
    ——————————————————————————————————————

  16. BrianWick says

    As a city boy – the first think I learned when I saw a gun – was run the other way as fast as you can – and duck, dont look back – and dont say anything.

    Then I married into an incredible sportsmans family – not to mentioned one of the largest meat processors in Southern Colorado – add to that they were italians and my daughter got a hot pink 22 rifle from her grandfather and the “family” for her first birthday – no worries – it has not been shot yet.

    The message is that for several years PETA and all the rest have influenced many hunting areas in Colorado to the point where no tags are issued the animals die of starvation – over population, etc. and the forest service (andcontractors) late at nite are dragging out dead animals under the radar.

    There are two side to the story – even this city boy sides with Bob Parsons. PETA may find themselves in a similar situation as ACORN – in fact likely will.

  17. Johnny says

    I’m seriously considering a move of my x,xxx domains from GoDaddy to Fabulous. I also spend six figures in their auctions also every year for many years now.

    Not sure what to think anymore. I’m really not very happy with Bob Parsons and GoDaddy right now.

    BTW…..the video is no longer there. He got rid of it it seems.

    It’s still on YouTube though, but bad audio.

    What I want to know is, “Why are there people like this in the world?”

    .

  18. Don says

    @brianwick

    The difference is he is showboating the kill of the elephant and trying to get exposure for his company, but it backfired. Plenty of CEO’s do the same thing and go on these high profile hunts for elephants and or other animals. But they don’t post it or facebook it to the world.

    Southern Colorado is in a drought, snowpack is down 50% and animals are dying because of lack of water and all the fires. Overpopulation I doubt that. When you have less water everything dies around it.

  19. Elephant Gun says

    @Brian….I’m no scientist, and I suspect you are not either, but common sense tells us starvation is part of the process of natural selection.

    Should the be shot b/c they are hungry? No.

    BTW…..I’m a BIG sportsman with the largest collection of fishing and hunting domains in the world….thousands.

    What you speak of is the same mentality as the clear cutting forests argument. I’ve read both sides and I don’t believe what they are selling when they say clear cutting is better for regrowth. I don’t buy that, and I don’t buy that we need to control populations.

    Anyhow, I’d agree to having a beer with you though. :)

    .

  20. Elephant Gun says

    Hey, Bungalow Bill
    What did you kill
    Bungalow Bill?
    He went out tiger hunting with his elephant and gun.
    In case of accidents he always took his mom.
    He’s the all American bullet-headed saxon mother’s son.
    All the children sing
    Hey, Bungalow Bill
    What did you kill
    Bungalow Bill?
    Deep in the jungle where the mighty tiger lies
    Bill and his elephants were taken by surprise.
    So Captain Marvel zapped in right between the eyes.
    All the children sing
    Hey, Bungalow Bill
    What did you kill
    Bungalow Bill?
    The children asked him if to kill was not a sin.
    Not when he looked so fierce, his mother butted in.
    If looks could kill it would have been us
    Instead of him.
    All the children sing
    Hey, Bungalow Bill
    What did you kill
    Bungalow Bill?

    THE BEATLES !!! :)

  21. MHB says

    Brian

    When you are a CEO of a company claiming a billion + market value and thousands of employees that depend on you to support themselves and their families they have a special duty in my opinion to not engage and certainly not brag about certain activities even arguable if they are perfectly legal.

    For example what if woman CEO decided to have an abortion, within the legal limits and then tape the procedure and place it on her companies website.

    Wouldn’t be smart.

    And if the only reason to do so was to feed that person’s ego, that’s again in my opinion, is a lack of respect for all those workers whose livelihoods could be great effected by such actions.

  22. BrianWick says

    Hypocracy – the PETA.org case essentially was the last case prior to ACPA being passed – and provided more of a framework for the law itself than some realize.

    Bob Parsons did not break any law as John Berryhill indicates- yet – he as a US MARINE who lives and breaths by GUNS – is being scrutinized by many of us who are in a similar circumstance with our use of domains – where we are not doing the right thing with our domains (or GUNS) – so we lose our domains – or our speech – or our right to use GUNS in a forest.

    If that is the case with Nameview – shame on them and the names we all know behind that business – for bottom feeding off this.

    My business has no use for GoDaddy and the tire kickers it generates that clutter up my email and voice – I am not sure if I even like the guy – but he has dont NOTHING against any laws.

    Bring it on hypocrits….

  23. MHB says

    Brian

    As I said above legal or not, the filming of the kill and putting it up on your company’s site is stupid and a lack of respect for all other employee’s in the company who many I’m sure are unhappy with the activity as well.

    As my example above regarding abortion demonstrates, as a CEO of a company you have an obligation to your thousands of employees and their families not to put your ego ahead of your company.

  24. says

    Enjoyed your write-up Michael. While the elephant hunt debate could go on forever, Bob Parson’s has always had a bit of an image problem and this just makes it worse. I won’t be transferring my names out of GoDaddy immediately, but Bob really needs to understand that GoDaddy is bigger than him and that he needs to start acting professionally. By putting the video on the COMPANY’S website, he is not only hurting his own image now, but also the image of GoDaddy.

    Besides, the general public does not know who Bob Parson’s is, but GoDaddy is a recognizable brand and now his actions are being tied to GoDaddy in mainstream media. This is going to hurt them.

  25. Dave Zan says

    I think one thing BrianWick is essentially touching on is our outrage over this because that’s “our” standard? I wonder about the standard in that African village where Bob eventually shot the elephant.

    I mean, if that village honestly thinks having the elephant killed is for their own good, who are exactly to tell them that? If anything, it so happens a rich, white foreigner “happened” to be around (or arranged with any local government agency there or so) to do them a so-called favor. (if that’s what that village sincerely believes it to be…)

    Then again, how about those roaches some folks love to stomp on…

  26. Mr.T says

    Parsons is a prime example of the human mentality – show off the superior power through caveman’ish behaviour. It’s nothing more and nothing less.

    Where wildlife and man collide, mankind unfortunately has the edge with their primitive weapons. I don’t buy it for one second that Parsons was trying to help the village. If anything at all he was just feeding his own, ex-marine ego. Once a marine, always a marine eh?

  27. Hunter Crow says

    To all of the people who think that Bob Parsons is a bad guy, realize that our country is over 10 trillion dollars in debt, oil is about to go to a record time high, and there are many many issues in the Middle East and yall are worried about a guy killing an elephant and even donated the meat to starving villagers? Also, African Elephants are not even close to being instinct, in fact in many places in Africa they are over populating and destroying crops and peoples property and habitat for other wild life. Think about it. PETA needs to realize that people have been eating meat since the beginning. We need it to survive and live healthily. Supplements shorten life expectancies.

  28. MHB says

    Hunter

    And I guess it’s also since the beginning of time that man has felt a need to video tape themselves killing the animals & eating the meat, & posting it on the official corporate website showing what a manly man we are that we can kill an animal with our bare hands, holding a gun & firing away

  29. Gazzip says

    “To all of the people who think that Bob Parsons is a bad guy, realize that our country is over 10 trillion dollars in debt.”

    @ HunterCrow

    Hmmm, more like over 14 trillion not counting health care & pensions that have been “promised” to millions of baby boomers which would bring it up to over 40 trillion or more…but don’t panic, they’ll just raise the debt ceiling again and keep on printing shit loads of money lol

    Most bean counters would say they are already Bankrupt.

    Check it today and see what it is a month from now…eeek usdebtclock.org/

    However you look at the overall picture of the worlds economy great white hunter GoSicko Bob did’nt kill it for charitable reasons.

    It was done to stroke his HUGE ego….moron behaviour.

  30. Sammich says

    Wow, people are actually angry that this man killed a crop-destroying elephant and helped feed tons of hungry people? If he had killed a bunch of rats eating the crops, would people care? Rats are highly intelligent too. And because Zimbabwe’s government is corrupt, that means it would have been better if these people’s crops were destroyed and people starved rather than one elephant being shot?

    “Instead of shooting wild elephants with a gun (really brave of you by the way) why not do a man vs. elephant hand to hand combat kind of thing? That could bring money to the locals with the right promotion.”

    I wonder if Roann Martin (and every other person who uses moronic arguments like this) kills the cows made into her Big Macs with her bare hands too. Afterall, having some worker kill the cow with a bolt gun for you isn’t very brave, right?

    Did you know that in the U.S., countless rats, mice, deer, raccoons and other creatures are killed to protect our crops? And their bodies are not even used for food! Where is the outrage over this? Why is it okay for billions of those creatures to die, but not one elephant? Why is your food source more important than these people’s?

  31. BrianWick says

    Bob Parsons makes his millions by convincing folks to see things his way and ask them to reserve / renew a $15 domain and he gets a percentage of it.

    Hollywood gadfys make their millions by convincing folks to see things their way and ask them buy a $15 movie ticket and union members get a percentage of that.

    If you don’t like the movie – dont go – if you don’t like the registrar – do go there – B F D as “Dave” states – It is all about the bottom line as BigLie concludes like myself.

    Maybe registar employees need to be unionized – so they can control how a registrar sells and REGULATES domains.

    Everything else on this thread is Envy, Denial, Drama and Frustration – and for me – pure entertainment

  32. says

    “renew a $15 domain and he gets a percentage of it”
    ===

    One surprising thing, since 1998, is that the Registrars have not “Collectively” objected to getting such a small percent of the pie.

    It has also been surprising that the U.S. Government has not taken .COM back and put it out for competitive bid, or operated it in-house. Maybe the 9 vendors the FCC has recently selected will be doing that? Time will tell.

  33. says

    You know, I’m sick of people sticking up for Parsons actions to bolster his already small P***s by killing a hungry elephant.

    Here’s what Bob can do to make himself a hero instead of a zero:

    •Give $100,000 to the villagers to build a 10 ft barbed wire fence around their crops to keep the elephants out.
    •Give $100,000 to place large metal bins all around the villages and fill them with food the elephants love. Keep the bins full to keep the elephants happy.
    •Give $100,000 to the villagers to buy more pigs, goats, cattle, chickens and other meat sources they can raise.

    Learn that posturing as a macho man (demeaning women, killing big animals with big guns) doesn’t make his genitals any larger, but actually brings attention to the fact that his manhood is actually a short “extension”.

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