SeaWorld Calls Blackfish Petitions "Digital Harassment" in Statement Over Artist Cancellations

Categories: Animal Planet

seaworld-trainers-orcas.jpg
Flickr CC / Stig Nygaard
Classic rock artists and country music acts have been bailing on SeaWorld's Bands, Brew & Barbecue music fest left and right ever since several Change.org petitions were launched in response to the documentary, Blackfish.

And now, the park has finally issued a statement about the petitions and cancellations, calling the whole thing "a campaign of digital harassment," while insisting that those who put together the petition, and the artists who are fleeing the festival, are not representative of the rest of the population, who are still coming to the park in droves to watch killer whales rock out to hits of the 80s -- just like they do in the wild!

SeaWorld sent the statement to CBS News.

"This is a coordinated campaign of digital harassment and does not in any sense represent the opinions of the American public," the statement reads. "A far better measure is the number of people actually coming to SeaWorld."

Tourists are still coming to the park? Sick burn, bros.

But that's kind of the whole idea behind the petitions (or, any petition, really).

Get a musical act that will attract thousands of their fans to cancel their show in order to bring awareness. And, so far, more people are becoming aware of Blackfish thanks to these artists taking to social media and announcing their reasons for cancelling a performance.

And acts are dropping out left and right.

It started with the Barenaked Ladies, followed by Willie Nelson, and then Heart. REO Speedwagon has reportedly also cancelled on SeaWorld, while country music artist Martina McBride took to her Facebook page to announce her cancellation:

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Even acts who aren't scheduled to be a part of the festival are expressing their disdain, such as Joan Jett, who demanded that SeaWorld stop playing her hit "I Love Rock 'n Roll" during their killer whale shows.

The backlash and the ensuing Change.org petitions came after CNN aired Blackfish, which exposes the dangers of keeping orcas in captivity and interviews former SeaWorld trainers who speak of their regret over harming the animals.

In all, there are nine separate petitions totalling more than 56,000 signatures.

Last month, Animal Rights Florida members held a protest outside of SeaWorld Orlando.

The documentary also inspired a 12-year-old girl to crash the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and stage a solo protest of the SeaWorld float as she chanted "Boycott SeaWorld" and waved around a sign.

Before this recent "digital harassment" statement, SeaWorld had been saying that they respect the artists' decision to cancel but expressed disappointment that they would be influenced to do so by "animal extremist groups."

"The bands and artists have a standing invitation to visit any of our parks to see firsthand or to speak to any of our animal experts to learn for themselves how we care for animals and how little truth there is to the allegations made by animal extremist groups opposed to the zoological display of marine mammals," an earlier statement said.


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5 comments
kittycats
kittycats

I have to say that I am proud of the artists to stand up and cancel their performances




Freeforlife
Freeforlife

The FAA guy and SeaWorld PR people really need to wake up. They are not helping, since when does denial, delusional insults, and name-calling help? It only turns people off.

I am not an animal activist or extremist never have been. But since I watched blackfish it awakened me to start thinking about the entire situation. I even tried to disprove blackfish because I didn't want to think that humans or any corporation was mistreat animals and such a huge way for so many years right in front of our very eyes. It has been to SeaWorlds advantage as they have hidden behind the illusion of purity and that illusion hid SeaWorlds cruelty, for long enough. I have news, we are the "majority" of the worlds public and we have had enough of the greed and animal abuse that SeaWorld is content with. Check SeaWorlds public records on how much they actually spend on conservation and how much profit goes anywhere except to their execs. I understand it's a business but not one we want to support any longer, unless they release the dolphins and orcas that are well enough and retire the others to sea-pens, "responsibly" . SeaWorld do your self a favor and stop your arrogant denials that we are a small group of extremist, we are many, and will be your demise if you do not change. Just saying!

Ouch
Ouch

Blackfish is now on Netflix streaming.  Watch it!   F Seaworld.

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