#BlockParty500 is the Genius New Protest Against Fake News on Twitter

#BlockParty500 is the Genius New Protest Against Fake News on Twitter

Despite being booted off a number of platforms including YouTube, Spotify, iTunes and Facebook, Alex Jones is still active on Twitter. This is despite widespread outrage from people who don’t think free speech covers spreading debunked rumours that 9/11 was an inside job or the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax, both of which Jones has claimed in the past. The anger only intensified after CEO Jack Dorsey said the alt-right radio personality had not done anything to violate the site’s guidelines, despite banning Milo Yiannopoulos for dodgy behaviour back in 2016.

Still, Twitter users aren’t taking this lying down. In the age of online petitions and hashtag activism, people are putting their accounts where their mouth is and refusing to endorse fake news and hate speech.

Like Facebook and other social networks, Twitter’s survival relies on ad revenue garnered from promoted tweets, sponspored accounts, and subsidized hashtags.

So, in protest users are hitting the micro-blogging company where it hurts – in the advertising department.

Twitter users can control what pops up on their timeline, so if you don’t like someone, you can block or mute their posts. That includes accounts that are shelling out extra for ads.

This clever new protest, dubbed #BlockParty500, is encouraging users to block Twitter advertisers across the board in the hopes it will pressure the site into deleting Jones. There is even a handy blocklist to make the process easier.

The protest is the brain-child of Shannon Coulter, creator of Grab Your Wallet – a similar project that helps customers to avoid companies that profit from the Trump Administration – along with her political writer pal Jeff.

Taking to Twitter to share their cunning plan, Coulter said:

The thread includes a number of guides on how to block the platform’s most lucrative advertisers. Shannon also provides a blocking tool that she created herself, which blocks all the accounts in one go, saving you time and effort. If Jones is removed from Twitter, the same tool will also automatically unblock all of these accounts for you.

If you’re thinking that #BlockParty500 is just another well-meaning hashtag to viral without actually making an impact, Shannon assures users that “even if you only blocked the top 25 to 50, that would have an impact.”

The hashtag is rapidly gaining traction, with over 20,000 Twitter users now taking part.

And they’re all thankful to Coulter and Jeff for making standing up to fake news so accessible

If even YouPorn has banned Jones from their site, it might be time for Twitter to take the hint also.

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Sophie Lloyd

Sophie is a cute feminist butterfly navigating the world one kitty meme at a time, or at least that’s how her best friend described her when she asked for help writing this bio. She likes cheese and one day hopes to be the proud owner of a corgi. For more of her random ramblings, follow her on Twitter/Instagram @_sophofbread.


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