BlockOut 2024: Social Media Users Stage 'Digital Guillotine' to Protest Celebrities Who Remain Silent About Palestine

Digital activists are calling on fans to block celebrities on social media in protest against the ongoing crisis in Gaza.

Two images side by side: Left shows a protester raising a fist, right features a celebrity in an elaborate dress at the Met Gala
Spencer Platt / Getty Images, Neilson Barnard/MG24 / Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue
Two images side by side: Left shows a protester raising a fist, right features a celebrity in an elaborate dress at the Met Gala

Angry fans want to hit the stars where it hurts.

As NPR reports, many social media users, enraged at the opulence displayed during this year’s 2024 Met Gala on Monday (May 6), are intensifying efforts to pressure celebrities to speak out about the ongoing crisis in Gaza. The online protest follows in person protests that took place outside of the event earlier this week. 

According to the Associated Press, on the night of the annual fashion soiree, Israeli military forces announced their decision to invade Rafah, where more than a million Palestinian refugees are currently living after being displaced from their homes since Hamas' October 7 attack on Israel. This includes more than 600,000 children.

This stark contrast motivated social media users to take up hashtags such as #CelebrityBlocklist on TikTok, attempting to highlight the disparity between the biggest names in entertainment flaunting their wealth at the Met Gala, while maintaining a dystopian-like silence on real-world suffering. Celebrities targeted on the viral lists include those who attended the event, such as Zendaya, Cardi B, Nicki Minaj, Kylie Jenner, and others.

Me waking up to hearing Kim K lost over 3 million followers in the last 24 hours, and that there’s livestream watch parties showing these big celebrities lose followers as we speak. Boy.. this morning’s coffee tastes especially good ☺️☕️✨#blockout2024

— DK 🦊🎃🍁 (@darkkittyart) May 10, 2024
Twitter: @darkkittyart

Accounts such as Blockout.2024 on Instagram are devoted to listing high-profile celebrities they believe haven't adequately addressed the issue. In the two days since the account was created it has already garnered over 100,000 followers at the time of this writing. The account has been targeting creators, major brands, and musicians alike.

“It's time for the people to conduct what I want to call a ‘digital guillotine,’ a ‘digittine’ If you will,'” TikTok creator Rae said on Thursday, who posts under the handle ladyfromtheoutside. “It's time to block all the celebrities, influencers and wealthy socialites who are not using their resources to help those in dire need.”

“We gave them their platforms. It's time to take it back, take our views away, our likes, our comments, our money by blocking them on all social media and digital platforms,” she continued.

Rae’s first suggestion for the ‘digitine’ was TikTok star Haley Kalil, also known as HaleyyBaylee. Kalil faced criticism online for sharing her Met Gala look while mouthing along to a trending sound of Kirsten Dunst in 2006’s Marie Antoinette saying, “Let them eat cake.”

“Haley Bayleyy for your ignorant decision to attend the $75,000 ticket Met Gala and recite ‘Let them eat cake’ while you have done nothing with your 10 million follower platform,” Rae said. “As people are starving and dying, we sentence you to the ‘digitine.’”

Kalil responded to the backlash in a lengthy post on her TikTok, clarifying that she did not actually attend the Met Gala but was hired to cover the event for E! News and interview celebrities as they were on their way to the elusive event.

“I am so, so, so sorry that I chose a sound that you guys could ever possibly feel was malicious in nature,” the 27-year-old said about the trending sound, per Dexerto, insisting there was “no deeper meaning.”

“I never even thought it would be taken in that way because I wasn’t elite enough to even be invited to the Met Gala,” Haley added. “I’m not elite, I am a normal person.”

The death toll in Israel's ongoing attack on Gaza has exceeded 34,500, according to the Associated Press, but the true total is unknown due to the widespread destruction of Gaza’s infrastructure, including government buildings, universities, and hospitals.

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