Celebs BLOCKED Online – New TREND?

Social media activists appear to be organizing a pressure campaign against celebrities on popular social networks over what they say is “inaction” on the topic of the war between Gaza and Israel—often characterized by activists as a “genocide.” They have decided to “blockout” celebrities in order to force them to “take a stand.”

To accomplish the blockout, participating users block content from certain celebrity accounts on X, Instagram, and Tiktok so that the celebrities’ posts will not appear on the users’ feeds. Some then, using hashtags such as #blockout2024, #blockout, or #celebrityblockout proceed to post about the celebrities whom they’ve blocked. Other users have taken to sharing posts lambasting celebrities who attend high-profile events such as the Met Gala, contrasting the glamour of the event with the state of Gaza.

The targeted celebrities are those that either haven’t, in the activists’ estimation, condemned Israel’s actions in Gaza enough, or haven’t done so at all. The campaign aims to leverage the curation tools made available to users by the platforms to enable users to save themselves the trouble of seeing content that they do not, for whatever reason, wish to be exposed to. Once any account is blocked—including that a celebrity or popular influencer—nothing posted by the blocked account will appear in the user’s feed. Blockout participants hope that by depriving offending celebrities of views, they will be able to reduce the income that celebrities earn from their social media posts.

The war, which erupted on October 7 when Hamas launched a paraglider attack against Israel’s civilian population, has provoked an ongoing retaliatory campaign by the Israeli Defense Force against Hamas forces in Gaza with the aim of wiping out Hamas’s entire power structure. According to the Ministry of Health in Gaza, an entity not known for accurate reporting, around 35,000 people have died on the Gaza side of the conflict. The ministry’s numbers do not distinguish between alleged civilians and known combatants.

Participants in the blockout claim that the campaign is not a protest.