Go Daddy founder and CEO Bob Parsons is not one to back down from a little controversy. The outspoken entrepreneur helped make his company a household name -- and the largest Internet domain registrar in the world -- with edgy Super Bowl commercials that have become perennial water-cooler fodder. Now, he finds himself in the crosshairs of the equally outspoken PETA and other animal-rights advocates over a graphic video he posted online, which depicts him shooting and killing an elephant in Zimbabwe. The video has already been viewed more than 300,000 times.
Parsons, a member of the AOL Small Business Board of Directors, says he was working with tribal authorities to prevent "problem elephant" from decimating crops, legally, and that the slain elephant provided food for impoverished villagers. PETA is leading the charge against Parsons, branding him the "Scummiest CEO of the Year," canceling its Go Daddy account and encouraging others to do the same. "Instead of coming up with flimsy excuses for killing these highly intelligent and social animals, Parsons should use his wealth to fund humane solutions to human/elephant conflicts," PETA said on its website.