Tell Groupon to Stop Endorsing Animal Abusers


Target: Groupon CEO Rich Williams

Goal: Stop partnering with SeaWorld, UniverSoul Circus and Ringling Bros., all of which exploit animals for profit.

Online deal marketplace Groupon continues to promote notorious, animal-abusing companies like SeaWorld, UniverSoul Circus and Ringling Bros. There is only one reason for this: Groupon has decided that its profits are more significant than the welfare of innocent, sentient beings.

SeaWorld is a nefarious company that profits from the exploitation of highly intelligent animals like orcas and dolphins. As the documentary film Blackfish exposed, the conditions in which these animals are forced to live and perform are deplorable and completely unnatural, causing them emotional and psychological distress as well as significantly shortening their lifespans.

UniverSoul Circus has a history of mistreating animals and working with well-known animal abusers. For example, the circus employs Mitchel Kalmanson, who was cited by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for keeping big cats confined in cages that did not allow them to stretch to their full height and length. He also neglected to properly address a female tiger’s leg injury despite the fact that she was limping.

Ringling Bros. Circus has a long and sordid track record when it comes to animal abuse. The circus has been cited numerous times by the USDA for violating the Animal Welfare Act, paying a $270,000 fine in 2011. Animals have died in the circus’ care from lack of water and neglect. While Ringling Bros. has retired its elephant act, it still exploits big cats and other animals.

To promote these companies is to promote all the suffering endured by the animals in their possession. Please sign the below petition, urging Groupon to stand up for non-human life by disavowing these cruel establishments.


Dear Mr. Williams,

It disturbs me that you continue to support and promote SeaWorld, UniverSoul Circus and Ringling Bros. These companies are all infamous for their exploitation and abuse of animals.

The documentary film Blackfish exposed SeaWorld for what it is: a cruel prison for marine life. Public backlash against the so-called amusement park has been massive. As a result, the park has vowed to end their orca breeding program. However, it has no plans to liberate the thousands of animals held captive there.

UniverSoul Circus does not have an exhibitor license from the USDA. This means that is has to rent animals from licensed exhibitors. Dozens of exhibitors contracted by UniverSoul Circus have been cited for failing to meet minimum federal standards for the care of animals used in entertainment. Clearly, the owners of UniverSoul Circus are not vigilant about ensuring that the animals used for their shows are treated properly.

Ringling Bros. is perhaps the most notorious circus of all. Trainers have been torturing, abusing and neglecting animals, including big cats and elephants, for nearly a century. Due to public outrage, the circus has agreed to stop featuring elephants in its shows. However, like SeaWorld, it continues to exploit other animals and has no plans to retire them.

By promoting these companies, Groupon endorses the exploitation of innocent animals. Until you cease doing so, I will never use Groupon’s services.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Groupon

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  1. What is WRONG with you, Groupon admin.?!! You’re as bad as TripAdvisor! You know where you can stick your stupid coupons…

  2. Sorry groupon, I won’t b using u anymore, bye bye till u stop.

  3. I use groupon all the time… I mean I Will NOT use groupon anymore, who does not know about the greed of universal soul circus and ringling bros?? They have exploited and abused these animals for decades. Please do Not let it continue. Sick watching the today show talk about the retiring elephants ? would think those college educated commentators would choke on the stupid commentary… Like these co. Are helping animals?, get your educated heads out of the sand. It makes me so sick!

  4. boycott groupon spread the word

  5. Beth Knalfa says:

    Mr. WILLIAMS lost quite a few customers whom I have informed. So sad Groupon condones and supports this horrible abuse to these animals for the sake of greed! Goodbye Groupon.

  6. Lisa Zarafonetis says:

    Signed & Shared. ?

  7. I am writing today to express my disgust that Groupon would take up a partnership with SeaWorld to give discounts to the inhumane park. As you may know, SeaWorld persists in endangering humans & animals even in the light of a number of tragedies, which include the death of three people and many orcas.

    SeaWorld is realized as a cruel environment for orcas by numerous former trainers as well as marine animal experts. There were also a number of musicians who were scheduled to perform at SeaWorld—including Willie Nelson, Trisha Yearwood, & Martina McBride–, however, they canceled their performances after viewing the documentary Blackfish and discovering for themselves how confinement to tanks leads orcas to become neurotic, self-destructive, and extremely dangerous.

    I ask that Groupon please follow the lead of millions of families and the many public figures who refuse to endorse the abuse of marine mammals. Until then, I will no longer use Groupon until it discontinues its relationship with any captive any shows you work with, to include circuses.

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