SeaWorld employees attempt to sway poll in its favor

By Marie Blake,

A poll released by the Orlando Business Journal appeared to be swayed, as 54 percent of its votes came from a single SeaWorld IP address.

The Wrap reports that the results of a poll — asking readers if the documentary Blackfish had changed their opinions of the park — had been altered, because approximately 180 out of the 328 votes had come from a single SeaWorld IP address.

When confronted about this situation, spokesman Nick Gollattscheck defended their actions.

"We have three parks and our corporate offices in Orlando. You would expect that we would have a lot of team members in Orlando -- and throughout our company -- who would vote," Gollattscheck said. "If a poll goes up regarding SeaWorld, our team members have as much a right to vote as anyone else, and vote they did."

Blackfish tells the story of multiple trainer deaths at SeaWorld, and brings to light the dangers of keeping orcas in captivity.

Numerous performers have cancelled their performances at SeaWorld in light of the documentary.

A SeaWorld float at the Rose Parade was recently the target of angry members of the animal rights organization, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA).

The Huffington Post reported that about 100 PETA supporters attempted to stop the SeaWorld float that depicted a family of orcas swimming together in the sea, calling it a "mockery" because the whales are actually kept in captivity, away from their families.

18 adults and one minor were arrested after trying to sit in front of the float.

SeaWorld called PETA an "extremist organization," and claimed that the real advocates for the whales are their own trainers and staff.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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