Remember the puppy ad GoDaddy was excited to share with the world on Super Bowl Sunday? Turns out its worse than anyone could have ever imagined.
The web hosting giant released the ad early Tuesday morning and found itself in a world of criticism over the content. The 30-second spot features a golden retriever puppy named Buddy who is thrown from the back of a truck and struggles through harsh conditions to find his way home. The reunion is short-lived, however, as the owner quickly announces that she's sold Buddy thanks to a new website from GoDaddy. "Ship 'em out," she yells as the door shuts on a despondent Buddy.
Que the Internet reaction they had to know was coming...
A change.org petition petitioning GoDaddy to remove the ad immediately garnered tens of thousands of signatures. In a post on its website Tuesday evening titled "We're Listening, Message Received," GoDaddy CEO Blake Irving decided to do just that.
"This morning we previewed GoDaddy's Super Bowl spot on a popular talk show, and shortly after a controversy started to swirl about Buddy, our puppy, being sold online," writes Irving. "The responses were emotional and direct. Many people urged us not to run the ad…. The net result? We are pulling the ad from the Super Bowl. You'll still see us in the Big Game this year, and we hope it makes you laugh. Finally, rest assured, Buddy came to us from a reputable and loving breeder in California. He's now part of the GoDaddy family as our Chief Companion Officer and he's been adopted permanently by one of our longtime employees."
Animal advocates quickly cheered the move, with PETA director Colleen O'Brien saying the company did the right thing.
"The sale of animals online and from pet stores and breeders should be roundly condemned, and it was today," she said in a statement to AdWeek. "GoDaddy did the right thing by swiftly promoting adoption. PETA's message is that when you buy a dog from a pet store or a breeder, a dog in an animal shelter dies."
While it's been pulled from YouTube, you can still see the ad below.