Fake Black Lives Matter page on Facebook eclipsed the real thing


In 2015 Mackay was appointed vice president of the NUW's general branch and the union's public office records state that he still holds the position.

The Black Lives Matter page had nearly 700,000 followers - dwarfing the movement's official page - before it was suspended by Facebook.

One of the suspended officials is Ian Mackay, who has dozens of web domains registered to his NUW email address including many with black rights slogans.

He's been suspended pending a union investigation. It is claimed they raised about A$129,000 ($100,000, £71,000) and that some of the funds had been tied to an Australian bank account, with one fundraiser linked to Mackay by name.

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The NUW national secretary Tim Kennedy said in a statement that the union had suspended "the relevant officials pending the outcome of an investigation".

"These fake BLM [Black Lives Matter] accounts and fake BLM people literally stealing money off of Black Death is so stomach churning I can't even begin to explain", she wrote.

The actual Black Lives Matter page has a blue checkmark, indicating that Facebook has verified the page as legitimate.

It claimed the money raised would go towards boosting coverage of stories and prove support for victims of hate crimes. Facebook suspended the page, but CNN reports that they only did so after they repeatedly talked to the social media site, describing the process in exasperated terms.

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The CNN investigation traced an anonymous Facebook profile under the name "BP Parker" who shared a link to the blackpowerfist website the day after it was registered. The company's founder, Mark Zuckerberg, is due to appear before the US Congress this week when lawmakers will quiz him about the privacy scandal involving political consultant Cambridge Analytica and Russian use of the platform ahead of the 2016 US election.

However, CNN says Facebook initially refused to suspend the page when confronted with the results of their investigation, saying it didn't breach their "community standards".

When asked for comment, Facebook said only that it had created "several techniques" to find and stop fake activity, and that its teams reviewed them to take "appropriate action".

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