Facebook Bans Group Planning to Trash Black Panther Ratings | The Mary Sue
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Facebook Shut Down the Group Planning to Trash Black Panther’s Viewer Ratings

Black Panther come at me

Yesterday, news made the rounds of a Facebook group—purportedly run by the same person who took credit for attacking Star Wars: The Last Jedi’s user ratings on review site Rotten Tomatoes—that was aiming to bring down user review scores for Marvel’s Black Panther later this month due to concerns about “SJW messages” and “minorities.” Despite the page owner’s seeming glee at all the news coverage, it has come back to bite them: Facebook has removed the page.

If I had thought more quickly (or had any faith in Facebook to do anything other than ban people reacting to abuses of their platform), I probably would’ve grabbed screenshots of the page (“Down with Disney’s Treatment of Franchises and its Fanboys”) owner sharing negative news articles and thanking them for the publicity, but the schadenfreude will have to survive without them. Website Marvel Studios News reported the page to Facebook for its hateful nature, and they received a reply that the page has been banned. Turns out not all press is good press. Who knew?

It’s likely that the group will just pop up again elsewhere, or that at least some of those who had signed on to skew the movie’s ratings will still try to do so anyway. For its part, Rotten Tomatoes, who already denied that automated bots had an effect on The Last Jedi’s ratings, said that their team monitors this kind of thing and wouldn’t let any kind of coordinated campaign to skew the numbers stand. They told The Hollywood Reporter,

“We at Rotten Tomatoes are proud to have become a platform for passionate fans to debate and discuss entertainment and we take that responsibility seriously. While we respect our fans’ diverse opinions, we do not condone hate speech. Our team of security, network and social experts continue to closely monitor our platforms and any users who engage in such activities will be blocked from our site and their comments removed as quickly as possible.”

But either way, Black Panther is likely to be an unstoppable box office force, with this kind of campaign resulting in an exercise in futility, whether it’s technically successful at its goal of lowering the user score or not. Still, it’s nice to see the powers that be actually take notice and step in to reduce this kind of toxicity and hate.

(via CBR.com, image: Marvel Entertainment)

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Dan is many things, including a game developer, animator, martial artist, and at least semi-professional pancake chef. He lives in North Carolina with Lisa Brown (his wife) and Liz Lemon (his dog), both of whom are the best, and he will never stop reminding The Last Jedi's detractors that Luke Skywalker's pivotal moment in Return of the Jedi was literally throwing his lightsaber away and refusing to fight.