#StarveTheTrolls: Pro-Duterte influencer mass-reported by KathNiel fans

Screenshot from Banat By/FB
Screenshot from Banat By/FB

A pro-government influencer is being mass-reported since last night by fans of actress Kathryn Bernardo after the blogger criticized the latter for supporting her home network, ABS-CBN.

Their rallying cry: the hashtag #WeBlockAsOne.

The blogger Banat By (Byron Cristobal in real life) posted a video yesterday where he went through practically every line of Bernardo’s Instagram video, where she defended ABS-CBN from critics who have accused it of violating the law. Bernardo posted the video almost two weeks after the media company was shut down by the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) due to its expired broadcasting franchise.

Read: BREAKING: Congress grants ABS-CBN provisional franchise to resume broadcast

A manager of Mocha Uson’s Facebook page, Banat By starts his diatribe by playing the first few seconds of Bernardo’s video and saying, “Look at the way she took a deep breath. You know she’s an actress based on that; you’ll feel a different level [of emotions].”

Adding sarcastically, he says in English and Filipino, “Winner. What a winner. Let’s not play this anymore. We all know she’s the best actress. Let’s applaud her. That was my first reaction. Lights, camera, action!”

When Bernardo complains about ABS-CBN being shut down by the NTC, Banat By furiously says, “That was not done by the government. You did that yourself. You didn’t file [the franchise]. The government is just implementing the law. That’s all your fault.”

Then Banat By accuses ABS-CBN of a string of wrongdoings, all without offering proof.

“Why were you delayed in Congress in the first place? You were delayed because you have a lot of employees whom you don’t pay right. Your news is biased. You didn’t follow the Fair Election Act. Those are the reasons why you were delayed. Who made those reasons? Was it us? Is it Congress? Is it President [Rodrigo] Duterte or you? That was all your fault; you and your company,” he says.

Read: Actress Angel Locsin tells Calida: ‘You will be remembered as the man who killed ABS-CBN’

Duterte said on multiple occasions that he would personally block the company’s franchise renewal, alleging that ABS-CBN failed to air his campaign ads during the run-up to the 2016 elections. He also said that the company’s current affairs shows had broadcast reports which portrayed his government in a negative light. House Speaker Alan Peter Cayetano also appeared to have an ax to grind against the company, alleging that ABS-CBN has interfered in the country’s political affairs.

Shortly after Banat By posted his video, fans of Bernardo and her real-life partner Daniel Padilla (AKA KathNiel) stormed Twitter, and encouraged each other to report the blogger’s Facebook page while using the hashtag #WeBlockAsOne. The tag is a snarky reference to the Duterte government’s anti-COVID-19 slogan, “We heal as one.”

KathNiel’s fans were understandably furious at Banat By, including @rodmagaru, who wrote, “DDS Trolls maligning Kathniel. MASS REPORT then BLOCK the page!”

Another netizen, @markgeronimo_ tweeted, “KATHNIEL fans otw to end and block the f*cking trolls.”

“Just because Kathryn Bernardo spoke up in support of her network, this Mocha Uson minion is harassing her on Facebook Live right now. Push back. Report the page. Block and starve the trolls who feed into his page, too,” encouraged @rupertnotholmes.

Activist and former congressman Teddy Casiño thought the whole movement was “brilliant.”

“By blocking the trolls, we collectively vanish them from our socmed (social media) feed and so they are left to spread hate and lies among their fellow trolls and fake accounts,” Casiño said.


Do you think Banat By deserves to be reported? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below or tweeting to @CoconutsManila.

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