Social media juggernaut Facebook has removed the social group that was organized to sabotage Black Panther and it's Rotten Tomatoes audience score. The group is the same one claiming responsibility for tanking The Last Jedi's Rotten Tomatoes score, which was pretty successful if we're to believe them and not Rotten Tomatoes, who claim there was no site tampering. Controversy began to spread when one of the members bragged on another site that they were responsible for the poor user scores for the latest Star Wars movie. The group decided that they were going to do the same with all upcoming Disney releases.
The Down With Disney's Treatment of Franchises and its Fanboys group was removed by Facebook today after it gained national attention. The page was reportedly started by a self-proclaimed member of the alt-right, who did not agree with the way the DCEU gets treated in the press when compared to Marvel and Disney projects. The group started an online event for its followers to take over Rotten Tomatoes user score section and flood Black Panther with negative reviews, which gained over 4,000 people.
On the event page, the leader of the group posted a manifesto of sorts and took time to pat himself on the back for the successful attack on The Last Jedi. The statement on the event page says that Disney's business practices are part of the reason why the DCEU gets such bad press. In addition, the page claims that Disney pays off critics. You can read the statement in full below.
"Given the massive success of the audience review rigging on the Rotten Tomatoes site for Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and due to the sudden rise in those disgruntled with Disney business practices among other factors especially due to the corporate manipulations which created falsified bad press for the DCEU, I feel that it's time to strike back at all those under Disney and bring down the house of mouse's actions for paying off the critics that hurt DC Comics on film and for other parties affected by them. I'll be making events like this for Infinity War and the Netflix shows etc so we can rally together to truly make a difference. Share this with your friends and all potential sympathizers."
Black Panther director Ryan Coogler was asked about the plan to sabotage the user ratings and he revealed that it didn't bother him. Instead, he insisted that he wanted as many people as possible from different backgrounds to see the movie. Additionally, Rotten Tomatoes released a statement saying that they would block any reviews with "hate speech," but there's really nothing the site can do with people logging on to write negative reviews.
In the end, it doesn't matter since the Down With Disney group was taken down by Facebook. However, the group will more than likely be pretty angry that they were shut down and will head over to Reddit or 4chan to continue their campaign to publicly trash anything Disney related. While reviews aren't the deciding factor for everybody when they go see movies, the negative user scores compared to critical praise does begin to add up and add to controversy. You can read about Facebook shutting the Black Panther/Disney hate page down via Variety.