If you happen to scroll through Twitter during Game of Thrones tonight, you’re likely to see some messages that are a little different than the typical flood of GoT reactions.
The creators of the #NoConfederate hashtag are planning a social media campaign that pressures HBO to cancel the upcoming alternate history series Confederate. The show, which HBO states will “take place in an alternate timeline, where the southern states have successfully seceded from the Union, giving rise to a nation in which slavery remains legal and has evolved into a modern institution,” was created by Thrones showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss.
“The main objective with the #NoConfederate campaign is to say to HBO that we do not believe they should spend any additional time, money, or energy on this idea,” said April Reign, one of the #NoConfederate campaign creators, in an interview with Mashable. Reign is also the creator of the #OscarsSoWhite movement.
“It’s better for [HBO] to cancel the show now, while it’s still in its infancy, than to expend potentially millions of dollars per episode and face an even bigger backlash during the premiere, because we are not going away.”
The #NoConfederate campaign was conceived and planned by Reign, Rebecca Theodore, Shanelle Little, Lauren Warren, and Jamie Broadnax. The five women are urging their followers to tweet during Game of Thrones using the #NoConfederate hashtag.
“There will be a targeted campaign, until we hear from HBO that the show has been scrapped,” Reign said.
President of HBO programming Casey Bloys defended Confederate against negative responses at TCA 2017.
“My hope is people will judge the actual material instead of what it could be or should be or might be,” Bloys said.
“That’s the thing they said about the Trump administration. ‘Let’s give it a chance,'” said Reign in response. “Things are still objectionable on their face, we don’t need to wait to see it come to fruition.”
“Because they’ve had at least six years to address these issues and have not, we do not have any confidence that they will be able to properly handle this issue with the nuance that is required,” Reign said.
Reign and the campaign’s other creators have specified that #NoConfederate is not encouraging a boycott of HBO, merely putting pressure on the company to dissolve the yet unwritten show.
“What we’d love to see Benioff and Weiss do, with the leverage that they claim they have at HBO, is to uplift other marginalized communities,” said Reign.
The #NoConfederate campaign officially begins tonight at 9pm EST, during the east coast airing of Game of Thrones.