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Go Daddy CEO to ABC News: Elephant Hunt 'Nothing to Be Ashamed Of'

Michael Buckner/Getty Images for Celebrity Fight Night(SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.) -- Go Daddy CEO Bob Parsons has a message for those outraged by a four-minute video of an elephant hunt in Zimbabwe on his Go Daddy video site.

"I think if you had all the facts and you knew exactly what was going on and the difference it makes in these people's lives there," he told ABC News Radio, "you'd feel completely different."

Parsons has said he participated in the hunt because the elephants were a nuisance destroying crops the local population depended upon for sustenance and even threatening the lives of villagers. Therefore, his hunt solved two problems, he suggested.

"First they have their crops," he told ABC News Radio, "and they get to eat the elephant."

Parsons always has welcomed buzz and controversy around his racy Super Bowl commercials. But backlash against his recent video could damage his company's place as the number-one Internet domain name company.

This week, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) said it will close its account with Go Daddy and is encouraging other account holders to do the same.

Parsons has defended the hunt in the media. He said that a local farmer asked him to hunt the elephants that were destroying crops on his farm and leading to growing hunger in the area. He added that critics misunderstood his intent in posting the video.

"It's certainly nothing to be ashamed of," he told ABC News Radio. "And I think it just should be recorded, for nothing else, for people to see what goes on over there."

"This is not the kind [of elephant] that you see on Disney," he added. "I mean, these are not gentle creatures. I mean, these are wild animals."

Go Daddy, based in Scottsdale, Ariz., says it manages half the websites in the country and has 2,950 employees.

A Go Daddy competitor, Namecheap, is inviting attention to the elephant controversy and has launched a promotion in which you can transfer your account for $4.99. Namecheap added that it will donate $1 to Save the Elephants.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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