In response to widespread criticism and reporting, Facebook has taken down a sick page organized around a supposed Valentine’s Day “cat punching” event.
The page was removed after more than 20,000 people signed a Care2 Petitionsite Shut Down Cat Punching Page petition urging the social network to remove the page, which featured hateful, smarmy, insulting and violent images and commentary. “If you are a cat lover, animal lover and overall decent human being then help convince Facebook to take down this page,” petition author Michael Ruzza wrote. The Mirror reports that 1k people signed the petition in just one hour. The petition is still up at this writing, and has over 26,000 signatures now.
Animal lovers networked on Facebook, asking their friends and others to report the page and to sign the petition.
We’ve seen some of the images from the page but will not share them here. There were photos of dead cats and kittens and pictures of men holding their fists p to the faces of cats.
The page appears to have been started with the intention of winding up animal lovers by well known troll Jamie Card.
Among other things, the page mocked cat owners as “smelly shut-ins”.
“I prefer the full grown cats, honestly,” the page admin wrote. “The little ones can’t take a punch to save their lives. It’s pathetic.”
When Kimberly S signed the petition earlier today, she wrote: “It’s unreal that a page like this is allowed to remain on Facebook. From what I understand, it is a NOT SO FUNNY “joke” that is meant only to “get a rise” out of people. Created by trolls so they can see how much attention they can get. And, yes, it did get a rise out of ME. It’s NOT funny at all. Want to make a joke of something, make a “joke” about something else, like the weather, but not about innocent and voiceless animals. Shame on Facebook for allowing it to remain at all.”
While the page may have been meant to sicken and anger animal lovers rather than to actually hurt cats, its removal is a victory for animal welfare nonetheless and a welcome action on Facebook’s part.