Animal rights group PETA, which long ago mastered the art of using video game criticism to garner publicity for its cause, is at it again.
Kotaku reports today that PETA has targeted an upcoming 2K series based on the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. A new campaign urges PETA supporters to petition publisher Take-Two to cancel planned circus games for the DS and Wii.
We've told Take-Two about Ringling Bros.' real-life, lengthy history of animal abuse and neglect and shown it undercover video footage of a standard industry training session, in which animal handlers used electric prods and bullhooks to gouge elephants in the most sensitive parts of their bodies.
Even though it knows that circuses are no fun for animals, Take-Two is still moving forward with its plan to create a Ringling Bros. Wii game. Please send a message to Take-Two CEO Ben Feder urging him to sever ties with Ringling Bros. Let him know that you'd rather play a game featuring a circus that does not beat animals for "entertainment."
In a follow-up report, Kotaku offers comment from Take-Two exec Alan Lewis:
As a matter of company policy, we don't comment on the business affairs of our licensors. We fully stand behind all of our products.
A Ringling Bros. spokesman contested PETA's allegations of animal abuse.