HA-HA: Georgian Facebook users exercise new form of protest
An unusual action took place in Tbilisi near the State Chancellery, home to Prime Minister’s cabinet.
People brought rubber boots here to express their feelings about the Prime Minister’s post on his official Facebook page which received hundreds of “likes” from countries that have nothing to do with Georgia. The premiere and his administration are being accused that they bought the “likes”.
Prime Minister’s statement, ha-ha, and Anush Kumar
It all started on June 5, when Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili wrote an appeal to non-governmental organizations on his official Facebook page, calling their demand for the Minister of Justice’s resignation unacceptable.
Supporters of the resignation of Justice Minister Teo Tselukiani commented on the post using the “haha” emoji, which soon took on the character of a flash mob – more than 7,000 Facebook users mocked the post.
At the same time, the number of those who “liked” the Prime Minister’s post also grew. Facebook users soon found a lot of so-called “bots” among the second category. The post of the premier was massively “liked” by Facebook users from Pakistan, India, China and Arab countries.
Indian users “liking” the political course of the Georgian Prime Minister brought on light jeers among the Georgian Facebook users. However, there was a question – is the governments buying “likes” by squandering budgetary funds?
The administration responded to the scandal on the second day after the incident. According to their statement, “no one” bought likes, and the page of the Prime Minister in Facebook underwent a cyber attack.
Send “ha-ha” to the Abkhazian Minister
This is the second time that the Georgian users of Facebook use the “haha” symbol as a protest response. The first time, their haha’s were felt by the de facto Foreign Minister of Abkhazia Daur Cove.
A few days ago, when Syria announced the recognition of the sovereignty of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Cove congratulated the Abkhaz people on this landmark event on his Facebook page.
Georgian Facebook users encouraged each other to mark the post of Daur Cove with a “haha” response. Soon, Daur Cove’s post had thousands of the “haha” emojis. The de facto minister was forced to give his public post the “private” status.