Leslie Jones, the SNL comedienne and one of the stars of the Ghostbusters remake, was attacked on Twitter earlier this week by internet trolls. Jones was barged with nasty tweets, some racist and others extremely graphic, because a conservative editor, Milo Yiannopoulos, urged his followers, around 300,000 of them, to swarm and attack Jones’ page.
She responded by calling out their hurtful messages, and said she was taking time away from Twitter to process all the hatred that had been directed her way. Last night [Thursday, July 22], she appeared as a guest on Late Night With Seth Meyers and addressed the whole incident.
She says that while she is used to been criticized or even insulted (she is a comedian after all), it was the swarming effect that these Twitter trolls had that overwhelmed her. These attacks are notorious on social media, when large groups of followers will flood an account with so many messages of hate that nothing positive can get through. Thankfully, Jones was able to work with Twitter and Facebook to get some of the instigators’ accounts permanently deleted
She also explained to Seth Meyers she has received an outpouring of love and support from her fans since this happened, and that she was really appreciative to her supporters for coming to her aid. She also had a strong message for the people on Twitter who attacked her, and for those who attack other people, saying that “hate speech and freedom of speech are two different things.” Way to go Leslie!