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Pro-choice users on TikTok and Reddit have launched a guerrilla effort to thwart Texas’ extreme new abortion law, flooding an online counseling website that encourages people to report law breakers with fake reports, Shrek memes and porn.

The law prohibits helping Texas women access abortion after the sixth week of pregnancy. To help enforce it, the Texas Right to Life anti-abortion group has set up a digital phone line where people can send anonymous information about potential violations.

“Any Texan can take legal action against an abortionist or someone who helps and encourages an abortion after six weeks,” the website reads, and those who broke the law can be fined up to at least $ 10,000. An online form allows anyone to submit an anonymous “report” on someone who illegally obtained an abortion, including a section where images can be uploaded for proof.

But pro-choice users had other ideas, bombarding the site with bogus reports and fabricated data through a campaign mostly run on Reddit and TikTok.

Although the site was launched a month ago, false reports poured in on the eve of the bill’s enactment. A TikTok user said he submitted 742 false reports that Governor Greg Abbott had illegal abortions.

In an ironic caption, the user encouraged others to do the same: “It would be a shame if TikTok crashes the ProLifeWhistleBlower website.”

The editors said they had submitted reports accusing the state of Texas of facilitating abortions by having freeways that allow people to get to the procedure.

“Wouldn’t it be so awful if we sent out a bunch of bogus advice and crashed the site?” Like, Greg Abbott’s butt stinks, ”said one TikTok creator.

Another TikTok user showed how he uploaded memes of Shrek claiming that they were images showing that “my wife aborted our baby 4 weeks after she started pregnancy without me consulting.” Meanwhile, other users have encouraged people to upload attached images that contain various types of porn.

The coordinated effort echoes a move in June 2020 to flood a Donald Trump rally with fake registrations, resulting in an empty stadium for the actual event.

An activist by the name of Sean Black said he programmed a script to automatically submit mass reports to the website.

Black, who describes himself as an “ordinary student from North Carolina,” posted a Python script and an iOS shortcut for the less tech-savvy to send thousands of reports a day.

He said his data shows that nearly 8,000 people have used the Python code and 9,000 have used the iOS shortcut. Others were inspired by his coding against anti-abortion advocates, saying collaborators across the United States are working with him on 10 “active branches” of the tool’s new features.

The website appears to be doing its best to cope with the influx of false reports and remains online despite other sabotage attempts including hacker attacks.

Nancy Cárdenas Peña, Texas director of the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice, said the website blocked her from using the form after she tweeted about it. Some web hosts allow users to block visitors to their sites by IP address.

“My God, I wonder if they’ve taken into account the people who abuse the integrity of this system,” she said, adding jokingly, “Hmmm, I hope people don’t abuse none of that! It would be terrible. “




theguardian Gt

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