Barbra Streisand, famous for inventing the Streisand Effect and her occasional performances on stage and screen, is having quite the moment in local internet culture.
Just days after deceased actress Pepsi Paloma's name started trending on Philippine Twitter on the strength of the Streisand Effect, filmmaker Quark Henares has alerted us to the mysterious rise from the dead of a Facebook vaguepost he wrote in April 2018. If you weren't one of the thousand or so people who saw the post, it looked a lot like this:
Using one of Facebook's built-in backgrounds, Henares asked: “Fat shaming?! Eh di rapist shaming na lang diba?” As he now continues: "Because, really, why should we shame people for the way they look? We should shame people who do bad things. Like put roofies in women’s drinks and then take them home and then threaten them with sex videos."
These are all legit concerns, and we're with him 100%. As we know now, however, that hadn't been the end of it. Soon after, Henares received a Facebook message asking him to take it down, purportedly from a lawyer representing a person who was not even named in the post. As commenters have pointed out, the only way for the individual to be identified is if he admits to being a rapist. Brilliant.
We know this because, today, June 20, two full months after that Facebook post had its moment, Henares has posted an update to tell us that there has been further "legal action" threatened.
Henares seems to have received an email from a law firm based in Belize, a lovely country on the eastern coast of Central America (we're not ashamed to say that we had to Google it). The "lawyers" are accusing Henares of violating Chapter 252 of the Belize Copyright Act, for "infringing" on their client's "intellectual property." We're pretty sure all these quotation marks make us look like we know what we're talking about.
The email claims that Henares copied the image from another online post made in October 2016—an easily disproven claim, since the information file on the image readily shows that it was made in May 2018. Besides, neither the law firm nor the client, e-Media World, seem to exist.
To which Henares replies:
He goes on to wonder: "Why are people trying so hard to have this post deleted to even go so far as to create a fake website dated two years ago and get me on a copyright claim? it literally is a sentence that has no allusion to anyone. Is someone scared that I am in possession of actual receipts? Or that I am in contact with many many people who do?"
Readers might also recall that another of Henares' posts—now hidden from view of the public—went viral for a good two weeks in October 2017. Featuring an all-star cast of commenters, the Facebook post has been immortalized on Reddit.
Henares' post might have faded from memory long ago, had "lawyers" not gotten involved. But, thanks to the Streisand Effect and a new post that has racked up hundreds of (often hilarious) reactions within an hour, we are reliving it in full technicolor Belizean glory.
Streisand lives on, guys. (Literally. She's not dead.)