For anyone who was active on Twitter during the ‘Game of Thrones’ episode Sunday, it would have been impossible to miss #NoConfederate that was trending right on top of the list.
The hashtag that beat even the usual flood of reactions to a ‘GoT’ episode was a planned social media campaign that was started by five women, demanding that HBO cancels its alternative history series, ‘Confederate’.
The show, which was announced by the channel a few weeks ago, is said to be a re-imagination of the Civil War in which the southern states would have successfully seceded from the union and slavery would continue to be practiced. It was announced that the showrunners of ‘GoT’, David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, would pen this show as well.
There has been a significant amount of outrage since the show was announced mid-July. The idea did not go down well, especially with five women — April Reign, Rebecca Theodore, Shanelle Little, Lauren Warren, and Jamie Broadnax — who created #NoConfederate, urging their followers to tweet supporting the campaign. Interestingly, April Reign is also the creator of the #OscarsSoWhite movement.
In an interview with Refinery29, Reign talked about the idea behind the hashtag, saying: “What we believe is that the commodification of Black pain for the enjoyment of others must stop.
“With what we see going on in this country now with state sanctioned violence and mass incarceration, the huge disparities in education and housing and other areas, this is not the time to suggest an alternate history which would, in some cases, reflect what we see in reality,” she added.
On Sunday, the campaign was rendered successful and #NoConfederate reached the top of Twitter’s trending list in the U.S., attaining the second position worldwide, with overwhelming support pouring in.
Following the massive campaign, HBO reportedly responded in a statement saying they would approach the subject with “care” and “sensitivity”. The premium cable network added: “We have great respect for the dialogue and concern being expressed around Confederate. The project is currently in its infancy so we hope that people will reserve judgment until there is something to see.”
In a previous interview with the Hollywood Reporter, Reign expressed doubts about the ability of Benioff and Weiss saying: “What confidence should we have in two gentlemen who can’t talk about race on…