The stunts and amazing challenges performed by the athletes and daredevils under the sponsorship of Red Bull have long been inspiriting youths all over the world.
However recently an event on US-Canada border has sparked outrage amongst fans and environmentalists alike. The said event involved starting a gas fire on a serene British Columbia Lake much loved and protected by the local environmentalists.
The outrage was so immense that Red Bull had to take the emergency measures and had to take down the latest instalment of its show Who is Job: A show that features the stuntman, Jamie O’Brien. The step was taken by the organization as a result of a huge influx of complaints on social media and backlash citing poaching and polluting the environment.
The show included everything that a Red Bull challenge lover would love to watch however the timing and placement of the stunt were at odds and as a result, the episode was taken down. In the show a group of surfers including Jamie O’Brien can be seen jumping over a flaming log right in the middle of the famous Tofino Kennedy Lake; later in the show O’Brien holds up a dead fish and eats it whole calling it the ‘Canadian Sushi’.
The said episode of the Who is Job was first published on Red Bull’s website and Facebook page on August 20, but was taken down shortly after. Soon after the episode was made public, the initial response was one of awe and anger on Twitter and Facebook. The main voice against the stunt the contributed towards taking down of the video was a fisherman and Tofino local environmentalist Josh Temple. Temple was perhaps the first local person who quickly launched a campaign against the event and started speaking to local media outlets about the stunt.
Speaking about his initial reaction Temple said that after seeing the performers lighting up the log with fire and gas and then later eating raw fish filled him with outrage and forced him to take action against this distasteful so called stunt.
The use of harmful accelerants was not apparent in the clip; however, Temple was determined that he had met a number of locals who saw the crew using gasoline to start the fire on the log which was later used in the stunt.
Patrice Radden who is the Director of Red Bull Corporate Communications released a statement to the online magazine that the controversial stunt on Kennedy Lake was filmed in the spur of the moment by a videographer that Red Bull had hired earlier to film O’Brien. However, Radden asserted that the it was later reported to the organization that the said stunt was never approved by BC Parks which made it an illegal act, and that the organization regrets the posting of the video on its website and Facebook page.