Huffpost Green
The Blog

Featuring fresh takes and real-time analysis from HuffPost's signature lineup of contributors

Ingrid Newkirk Headshot

An App That's Not Fit for a Dog

Posted: Updated:

By now, unless you were in Osama bin Laden's cave throughout April, you know all about how badly GoDaddy's CEO miscalculated when he challenged the boundaries of how mean to animals a CEO can be and still get away with it. He shot an elephant in cold blood while on some expensive boys' night out and then tried to blame it on the elephant and his own charitable urges. In a matter of hours, Mr. CEO went from self-proclaimed hero to publicly acclaimed zero -- no, make that less than zero -- and shot an elephant-sized hole in his company's reputation and profits in the process.

Comes now Google and the anonymous CEO of the Android app, Dog Wars -- yes, anonymous, as in, will not put his or her name to anything about this. Said CEO is trying to justify another amazing atrocity against somewhat smaller animals. Apparently oblivious to any problems with this bright idea, he has come up with an app that allows anyone who downloads it to vicariously fight dogs. Yes, players can enter that trash-strewn inner city back alley or walk into the woods behind that Deliverance-style country lane that they would otherwise not dare to get near and illegally gamble virtual money on... dogfights!

Says the anonymous CEO:

This is a cultural/generational gap misunderstanding in the shift of modern media and our effort at new age advocacy. This is our groundbreaking way to raise money/awareness to aid REAL dogs in need, execute freedom of expression, and serve a demonstration to the competing platform that will not allow us as developers to release software without prejudgement. The selling of electrons and fields in a database can raise real money for real causes and if executed properly raise awareness for this terrible blood sport at the same time.

I beg your pardon? My favorite part of this statement is, just as with Hunters for the Hungry, we are expected to forgive the blatant inappropriateness of the endeavor because the organizers/producers will give a percentage of their cut to charity! Even Michael Vick thinks this is cockamamie nonsense. The former dog-fighter has thrown his hat into the ring, which beats what else he used to throw into it, and denounced the app outright. And Hollywood is hot on it too. Alicia Silverstone, on behalf of PETA, wrote, "When I read about the new game Dog Wars, I couldn't believe my eyes. As a mom-to-be and someone who has adopted and loved rescued pit bulls, If one dog dies as a result of this game, you will not forgive yourself." And now everyone, from your grandmother to your corner grocer to Kevin Spacey, is asking Mr. Anonymous: "What planet are you on?" and demanding that the app be pulled.

Meanwhile, PETA is releasing a brand-new free iPhone app that allows you to send letters to companies in seconds. If you have an iPhone, go get it now and send your letter to Google, or go to PETA's website to take action at this very moment. Let them know that some games are beyond the pale, and Dog Wars is at the top of the list.

From Our Partners