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PETA Is Not Happy That Google Used a Camel To Get a Desert "StreetView" 367

First time accepted submitter flopwich writes Google used a camel-mounted camera to get a 'street view' of a stretch of desert in the United Arab Emirates. PETA's director Ingrid E. Newkirk is upset about it, saying they should have used jeeps. "These days, jeeps are in common use in the desert, as are light planes and even dune buggies, and satellite images could also easily have been taken instead," she said. "(Google) should leave camels out of its activites altogether."
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PETA Is Not Happy That Google Used a Camel To Get a Desert "StreetView"

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  • And? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Hartree ( 191324 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:36AM (#48130049)

    It's Ingrid Newkirk. What did you expect?

    • Re: And? (Score:4, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:41AM (#48130089)

      Would someone please think of the camels?!?!?!?

      • Re: And? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by NEDHead ( 1651195 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @11:11AM (#48131107)

        Hey! Camels gotta earn a living too. Think of their families!

        • Re: And? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Firethorn ( 177587 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @12:43PM (#48132419) Homepage Journal

          That was pretty much my thought. A camel that's truly pissed off isn't going to be helping you. They're big ornery creatures, after all. Meanwhile in getting the camera view the camel was provided with fodder, water, medical care, as well as all the other help that a domestic camel gets in exchange for walking around.

          • Re: And? (Score:5, Insightful)

            by painandgreed ( 692585 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @06:23PM (#48135757)

            That was pretty much my thought. A camel that's truly pissed off isn't going to be helping you. They're big ornery creatures, after all. Meanwhile in getting the camera view the camel was provided with fodder, water, medical care, as well as all the other help that a domestic camel gets in exchange for walking around.

            It's been said before, might as well say it again: Stop thinking of PETA as a pro-animal group, and rather think of them as an anti-human one.

    • Re:And? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by MickyTheIdiot ( 1032226 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:50AM (#48130201) Homepage Journal

      Seriously. If the Camel wasn't hurt shut the fuck up.

      • Re:And? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:05AM (#48130385)

        PETA never shuts the fuck up, ever. Even if you cave to them on something, they just start screaming at you about something else. You see PETA isn't in it for the animals, they're not in it for winning victories, they're not in it to make the world a better place. They're in it for one reason and one reason only: To promote PETA.

        • Re:And? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:15AM (#48130529)

          Doesn't PETA have a horrible track record of killing most of the animals it "saves"?
          When will someone really stop and think of the animals, and I mean Think about them, like oh hey Camels are pack Animals that have been doing hard labor in the desert for thousands of years.

          If PETA were truly concerned about animals they would have done something about the stray problem here in America first before moving to other areas.
          That or maybe protected the White Rhino or any other animal that is or has been poached to death.

          Fuck PETA and their so called Agenda. They cause more harm than good.

          • Re:And? (Score:5, Interesting)

            by gman003 ( 1693318 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @11:59AM (#48131713)

            Several of their "animal shelters" were closed because the government was going to force them to call themselves "euthanasia clinics" because they killed so many animals. PETA closed them rather than accept the more accurate name.

      • Re:And? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by jedidiah ( 1196 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:08AM (#48130419) Homepage

        It's the animal's native environment.

        They have been roaming those desserts long before man came along to pollute air or spoil the environment just to support internal combustion vehicles.

      • Re:And? (Score:5, Informative)

        by Dishevel ( 1105119 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:15AM (#48130515)
        Just came here to say .... "Fuck PETA"
        • Re:And? (Score:5, Funny)

          by bondsbw ( 888959 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @11:32AM (#48131383)

          I worked at a Chick-fil-A about 15 years ago. A man walked up to me and asked for the corporate office number.

          Me:

          Sure thing, can I ask what this is in regards to?

          Him, holding up a table-top display:

          I am a member of PETA. I do not like what you are doing to these cows, making them stand up and hold signs while wearing costumes.

          I'm pretty sure I started laughing, until I noticed the guy was completely straight-faced.

      • Re:And? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by SQLGuru ( 980662 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:45AM (#48130815) Journal

        Can't we sick Greenpeace on PETA -- get two of most polarizing groups fighting each other? The camel wasn't injured (was probably well taken care of) and was more environmentally friendly than a Jeep.

        • Funny, just before I read this comment I was thinking, "someone should send a letter to Greenpeace about PETA's lack of regard for the environment."

          Nothing like sicking 2 terrorist organizations on each other and watching the fun unfold.

  • dolphin? (Score:5, Funny)

    by leomekenkamp ( 566309 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:37AM (#48130053)
    If Google had used a dolphin, I would say that the PETA would have a point.
  • Summary (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:38AM (#48130059)

    PETA is never happy. Ever.

    Then again, they are a bunch of hypocrites that kill healthy animals that need new homes because they'd rather see them dead than as pets.

    So yeah....PETA can stuff it.

  • by Grantbridge ( 1377621 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:38AM (#48130061)

    PETA don't like animals having any relationship with humans. They put down the vast majority of dogs they recieve rather than re-home them because they think that's more "humane" (and it's cheaper..)

    They would rather you killed the camel and used a jeep to travel across the desert.

    They are scum, and they won't be happy until there are no animals left on planet Earth except mankind.

    • by i kan reed ( 749298 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:44AM (#48130137) Homepage Journal

      It's not so much that they're scum, it's that they mistake "ethical" with "imaginary line-in-the-sand absolutist moral law based". Ethics are difficult and nuanced, and sometimes raise questions you don't have the answer to. Those sorts of things aren't especially convenient for large groups united for the sake of ad campaigns and political lobbying.

      If you actually asked the question of "what does ethical corporate usage of beasts of burden look like?", you'd end up with a very complicated answer.

      You'll see this symptom with every political group that's actually genuinely grassroots and purpose oriented.

      • by delt0r ( 999393 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:49AM (#48130189)
        There is nothing even that consistent with their thought process. They are closer to a terrorist group looking for reasons to justify violence. At least at the top.
      • I was skeptical about the claim that PETA euthanizes so many animals, but studies say it's true [time.com], and may even understate the situation.

        The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services report on their investigation [huffingtonpost.com] found that 94% of the animals given to PETA for adoption were instead euthanized, 90% within one day.

        This is not ethical treatment of animals [huffingtonpost.com]. There's no "nuance" here. Putting the vast majority of healthy pets to death rather than trying to find homes for them is cruel and highly unusual.

        Of course, with $35 million in annual revenue, who can afford to take care of the animals, what with paying all the salaries for the people working for PETA to exploit them? PETA's job is to raise funds to pay PETA salaries. The animals are just raw material to be exploited, then tossed in a dumpster

        • Of course, with $35 million in annual revenue, who can afford to take care of the animals, what with paying all the salaries for the people working for PETA to exploit them? PETA's job is to raise funds to pay PETA salaries.

          Reminds me of the Westboro Baptist Church...

          • A lot of people are noticing the similarities between the two. Crazy over-the-top behavior and a holier-than-everyone-else attitude.
            • Put both groups in a sealed room with a puppy, a gay baby, and enough cudgels to go around.

              The problem will solve itself.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by macs4all ( 973270 )

          The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services report on their investigation [huffingtonpost.com] found that 94% of the animals given to PETA for adoption were instead euthanized, 90% within one day.

          Are you kidding me, Barbara???

          Yow!!! As someone who still has nightmares about the two pets (dogs) I have had to have euthanized, one with Osteosarcoma at 17 years old in 2009, and the other with Cronic Renal Failure and Adrenal Gland Cancer at age 13 just last July, something like that makes me insane...

          At the risk of getting flamed for "Godwin-ing", I just thought they were a way-over-the-top animal protection group; not the ones who had the "Final Solution" to animal cruelty...

        • by sudon't ( 580652 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @11:59AM (#48131703)

          They remind me of a certain person I know who, rather than give away a pair of cats she could no longer keep, had them euthanized. Her logic was along the lines of: No one could love them, or give them a better home than me, so they're better off dead.

          In terms of what they do with their funding, i.e., pay out very nice salaries, PETA is no different from other charities. The biggest beneficiaries of most charities are the executives of that charity.

          • They remind me of a certain person I know who, rather than give away a pair of cats she could no longer keep, had them euthanized. Her logic was along the lines of: No one could love them, or give them a better home than me, so they're better off dead.

            ^ THIS.

            We were discussing the killing of his two children by cardiologist Guy Turcotte yesterday (found not criminally responsible, now under appeal). I was arguing with my sister, saying that you'd pretty much *have* to have something wrong in the head to kill your own kids - even if it doesn't rise to the level of insanity. She was saying, No, she could see how some people just get really pissed off and kill.

            I guess if people can think this way about defenseless pets, it might be the same for their ch

      • Holy shit, man... I believe that might very well have been the most astute, intelligent and objective I've seen you post yet.
      • If you actually asked the question of "what does ethical corporate usage of beasts of burden look like?", you'd end up with a very complicated answer.

        On the other hand, why should there even be the concept of a "beast of burden"? The real question is "what does ethical interaction with animals look like?", and PETA seems to have taken the position that there is practically no such thing. To the PETA fanatics, any deviation from an animal's natural life is cruel. To an extent, they have a point - where mankind once relied on animals to provide capabilities humans do not possess, technology has now progressed to the point where there is little need for dom

    • by Sigma 7 ( 266129 )

      PETA don't like animals having any relationship with humans.

      Not quite true - PETA is okay with using animals as long as VP MaryBets Sweetland can get the insulin shot. Everyone else should avoid anything to do with animals.

      • Is animal-sourced insulin even used anymore? I was under the impression that it was cheaper to produce it using modified bacteria.

        • by Major Blud ( 789630 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:53AM (#48130243) Homepage

          Please think of the bacteria!

        • by Andy Dodd ( 701 )

          Nope, it hasn't been used in ages. It was largely obsolete even back when I was diagnosed with Type I diabetes close to 2 decades ago.

          I'm not sure if it's cheaper, but human insulin IS more effective than pork/beef insulin. Also, pork/beef consumption was going down and insulin demand was rising decades ago, which is why insulin-producing bacteria are one of the first genetically modified organisms ever created.

          These days, human insulin isn't actually that common - there has been a move to modified insuli

          • Being a Type 1 myself, these things interest me as well. The FDA has a nice write-up on it:

            http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/Resou... [fda.gov]

            "The manufacturing of beef insulin for human use in the U.S. was discontinued in 1998. In 2006, the manufacturing of pork insulin (Iletin II) for human use was discontinued."

    • by jellomizer ( 103300 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:54AM (#48130251)

      Animal Abuse - Sure a no brainier.
      Fur Coats - I can see that we don't need Fur Coats anymore as there is a big selection of cheaper and effective other sources for coats. (Fur as in they need to kill the animal)
      Food from babies - Veal and Lamb. Tasty but the animal is so cute I loose my appetite when I think of it that way.
      Food meats - Sure people are happy being vegetarian. I tried it myself my body hated me for it. (I will need to add leather although it isn't food, but a product from the animal from the processing of the rest of the food)
      Anything made from animal - Wool, Egg, Milk products come to mind. Now we are going to the crazy zone. These animals although are in sub-human conditions are still much better off then if they were out in the wild fending for themselves. Efforts should be towards improving their conditions not stopping their usefulness.
      Pets and worker animals - These are like family to us, and are treated extremely well often much better then most people who care for them live. Pets like Dogs have evolved (threw breading) to really like being around humans and helping us out. To say the dogs should be wild is actually making go against their nature.

      • Camels and other domesticated animals have been bred for years to do the tasks they do. They are not going to be 'happy animals' if they can't perform those tasks. If left to PITA, they would be cruelly denied what they are born to do.
      • by jedidiah ( 1196 )

        > Fur Coats - I can see that we don't need Fur Coats anymore as there is a big selection of cheaper and effective other sources for coats. (Fur as in they need to kill the animal)

        Fur is still quite superior to any attempts to replicate it with artificial means. It's more effective than the alternatives and much more durable.

        It's like Tyler Durden's ode to leather in Fight Club. A fur coat can last you the rest of your life.

        As long as you eat the relevant animal (arctic Mink farmers do this), then you are

        • This is correct. To this day if you travel to deep in the arctic/antarctic, you NEED a fur lined coat. Nothing else will provide enough warmth to keep you from freezing to death.
  • by andyring ( 100627 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:38AM (#48130063) Homepage

    I assume they put a decent camel jockey on the animal, probably brought it food and water, etc. I bet that camel's day was a lot better than it would have been if Google hadn't shown up to put a camera on its back.

    Aren't the PETA folks big environmentalists too? I would imagine a camel puts out a lot less carbon and CO2 than a Jeep.

    • by dontbemad ( 2683011 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:44AM (#48130143)

      Aren't the PETA folks big environmentalists too?

      In a word, no. PETA doesn't concern itself with topics of sustainability and preservation of the planet. It prides itself on a hyper-sensationalized message about how humans are evil and can literally do no right to animals.

      It really is unfortunate. Where there is room for a decent, effective animal rights group to help solve problems of animal abuse and cruel treatment, PETA has decided to completely occupy the space with its lunatic and extreme ideals, berating or silencing anyone that dares oppose their just and righteous mission.

      • by amiga3D ( 567632 )

        I'm thankful that we have PETA. Without them the level of comedic material would drop drastically.

      • by hey! ( 33014 )

        It really is unfortunate. Where there is room for a decent, effective animal rights group to help solve problems of animal abuse and cruel treatment, PETA has decided to completely occupy the space with its lunatic and extreme ideals, berating or silencing anyone that dares oppose their just and righteous mission.

        Did the ASPCA go out of business?

    • Agreed. How was this not an ethical use of an animal? Camels have been selectively breed over the course of thousands of years for precisely this sort of task.
    • by NormHome ( 99305 )

      Yeah right, did Google abuse the animal?; work it too hard?; not feed or water it enough?; not give it regular breaks as it's traipsing across the hot dusty desert?

      You make a good point on the environmental issue. Also Google's helping out the local economy by employing local people and resources, doesn't that count for anything.

    • Actually, a jeep would produce soil (sand) compaction and more destruction of habitat. Its high-torque tires would roll in a straight line, rather than stepping, increasing the likelihood of injury and death of small desert animals. Largely, rolling vehicles over non-developed land kills a whole bunch of animals in the process.
      • by scubamage ( 727538 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:44AM (#48130801)
        Shhhhh! Don't ruin the head-in-the-clouds holier-than-thou bubble that they try to live in! That's like trying to tell a vegan that anywhere from tens to thousands (depending on which study you look at) of animals are killed per hectare in the commercial production of vegetables! Not to mention the native species that go extinct due to native vegetation being felled to make room for their kale smoothie ingredients. Tillers aren't too kind to field mice, worms, or bugs they encounter. But PETA (and vegans) only really give a damn about animals they find "cute."
  • WTF? (Score:4, Informative)

    by B33rNinj4 ( 666756 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:39AM (#48130081) Homepage Journal
    PETA needs to focus on real issues. It's not like those cameras were tremendous burdens, or that the camels were abused.
  • by FooAtWFU ( 699187 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:41AM (#48130097) Homepage

    Google feeds their employees dead cows and chickens on a regular basis. They should have used plants. These days, quinoa is in common use in foodservice, as are beans and eggplants, and lentils could also have been easily used instead. Google should leave beef out of its activities altogether.

    :b

  • by Gerafin ( 1408009 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:43AM (#48130121)
    I hope that everyone gets a good chuckle out of this story and then moves on. Just like the Westboro Baptist Church, PETA keeps pulling stunts designed to incense rational people and get free advertising (I know that the point of WBC is litigation rather than advertising, but I still see parallels). Remember how PETA protested the game "Super Meat Boy" with a "Super Tofu Boy" parody? Don't fall for the trap - keep your emotions in check - smile & keep scrolling.
  • by ugen ( 93902 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:43AM (#48130125)

    So they prefer that Google use large vehicles that consume fossil fuel, emit greenhouse gases and may damage fragile desert ecosystem with their tires? Way to go PETA. I hope a few environmental groups take you on on this one.

  • jeeps and planes? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jehan60188 ( 2535020 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:44AM (#48130141)

    if google had done that, they'd be criticized for not caring about carbon emissions

  • Put this in Politics where it belongs.

    • by amiga3D ( 567632 )

      Come on...think of the chi...uh, camels!

      • by LWATCDR ( 28044 )

        I use the feature on Slashdot to exclude the politics category so I do not want to see political posts on Slashdot. Frankly Slashdot is so bad at anything involving poltics that is down at the FOX News and MSNBC level of trash.

  • by m_chan ( 95943 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:47AM (#48130161) Homepage
    "leave camels out of its activities altogether." If not being herded around in the desert, handled by camel herders, then what are camels for? Advertising smokes I guess. And more importantly, won't somebody please think of the dromedaries?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:48AM (#48130177)

    Wow, just wow. "Instead of doing minimal harm to a few pack animals that were specifically bred for this job, you should have used a vehicle that destroys the desert ecosystem because we have no idea how animals actually work."

  • by Trailer Trash ( 60756 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:49AM (#48130193) Homepage

    Remember? Rule #1 of the internet? PETA wants attention, positive or negative. Just ignore them. Please.

  • by Ignacio ( 1465 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:50AM (#48130197)

    I swear, they must do this because they have a moral imperative to remind everyone just how completely batshit insane they really are.

  • srsly

  • by bobbied ( 2522392 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @09:59AM (#48130303)

    We make sure we hire a Jeep with leather seats, burning beef tallow based diesel fuel to keep the AC going and make sure we staff the car with hamburger eating Google engineers wearing natural fur coats. Attach a trailer with a nice BBQ and make sure to hand out as much tasty meat as can be obtained, cooked and dispensed along the way to any hungry persons who asks. THEN we make sure to get a number of camels to pull the jeep along and make meat deliveries. Attache a big sign that says "People Eating Tasty Animals" too.

    Any other ways we can anger the PETA folks?

    These people are fruit cakes... WITH too many nuts. Go back to rescuing abused pets....

  • Fuck PETA. And why do you give it airtime?
  • "...and satellite images could also easily have been taken instead,"

    I don't think that works quite the way she thinks it does. Oh well, this is the same group that was recently up in arms over over Mario 3 because Mario transforms into the mythical Japanese tanooki.
  • Camels are slow, tempermental, and require constant supervision during data collection to ensure they dont decide to just wander back to the starting point or destroy the expensive rigging on them. And while they can survive for months without food or water, their human caretakers cannot and should be considered the abused animal, not the camel.

    Google should have used an autonomous vehicle; it is after all one of their strong suits. Strap solar panels on it and guide it with satellites, make a youtube s
  • PETA wants attention like a 3 year old with a tin whistle.
    There is no such thing as negative attention; as long as they are in the news, they will be happy.
  • Humans are animals obviously, it follows that all human exploitation should cease immediately. Quit your jobs and live a peaceful existence!

  • Maybe if they were grinding up the camels live (legs first) for fuel for their streetview vehicle. Or were dragging the camels behind the streetview vehicle, then they would have a point.

    I see PETA about the same way I do see camels, ornery, biting, spitting, smelly, animals
  • by Killer Instinct ( 851436 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:13AM (#48130497) Journal
    "If two PETA members are fighting, do we still call it a beef?"
  • It is hilarious how these "ethics warriors" like peta and greenpeace always piggyback onto "hot" company names in their headlines. When anyone else is using a camel, seems like they don't care. If they can get a name like "Google" or even better "Apple" into the headline, oh then they jump right into action!
    Same with Greenpeace, the headline would be "APPLE datacenter directly burns the ozone layer" when actually Apple, amazon and a few others are sharing that new data center and the data center turned out

  • by GlennC ( 96879 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:19AM (#48130573)

    The headline could have stopped after the first four words.

  • by Skylinux ( 942824 ) on Monday October 13, 2014 @10:31AM (#48130663) Homepage

    Use a drone -> Told you! They produce equipment for the military or CIA.

    Use a plane -> You know how many birds die to props each year? Murderers!

    Use a jeep -> Ohh gawd the environment!

    User solar powered vehicle -> WTF? You never get the energy back!

    Use a camel that is probably better cared for then dogs in PETA kennels -> Think of the animals!!!

    You just can't win.

  • Oh, wait, the camel already beat them to it.

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