“#TraPOE” Netizens calls out Grace Poe for using Twitter bots and riding UP’s UAAP victory on social media

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It seems that the social media team of Senator Grace Poe didn’t let the opportunity escape to promote their client by riding on the celebration held by the University of the Philippines for Fighting Maroons after the said basketball team reached finals.

Netizens noticed that after the Fighting Maroons won the match against Adamson University, hashtag #AtinNaPOEito dedicated to the new victory of UP quickly became a trending topic on Twitter.

However, instead of being received positively by the fans of Fighting Maroons, the Senator has been called out for allegedly using the victory of UP to promote herself in the upcoming 2019 Senatorial elections.

Netizen and NCAA Courtside Reporter Ceej Tantengco also shared her insight on how the #AtinNaPOEito hashtag quickly became viral on Twitter, saying that Poe paid for some team to make her trending on social media.

Tantengco showed some photos showing the several pages on Twitter which not posting anything about Grace Poe before suddenly used the hashtag #AtinNaPOEito.

Photo: Ceej Tangtengco

Here’s why I think #AtinNaPOEIto is a paid campaign:

1) After the first tweet on Poe’s original account, the next tweets are by “Hugot Quotes”-style accts—ALL posted within minutes of each other starting 10AM. (Screenshots with timestamp below.)

Second, Tantengco also showed some photos of suspicious Twitter users using the same hashtag, the said Twitter users are only posting about the Senator.

Tantengco said that Grace Poe’s PR team tried to lure the Twitter users from sharing the political campaign of the Senator by using the victory of the Fighting Maroons for their own purpose.

She also slammed Poe and called her a traditional politician for using a cheap trick.

“Since the hashtag is attached to pro-UP posters & included with other pro-UP hashtags, people RT-ing may not even realize they’re sharing a political hashtag. This is a victory for the UP men’s basketball team and their supporters. Don’t bring your campaign into this. #TraPOE” Tentengco said.

Netizen @HeJeMony even called the hashtag used by Poe as the “trashiest hashtag this week”.

JP tanyag questioned why Senator Grace Poe is resorting to social media bots despite already being popular in the 2019 senatorial surveys.

“I mean if Grace Poe is leading the senatorial surveys, why resort on having bots to trend hashtags such as #AtinNaPOEIto.” he said.

Jeff Crisostomo, the chief of staff of Dinagat Islands Rep. Arlene Bag-ao, also slammed Poe for using the UP Victory for her campaign.

“The UP victory yesterday in the UAAP game belongs to the team and the entire University. Hindi para sa elektoral na kampanya ng isang kakandidato ang tagumpay na ito.” Crisostomo said.

Twitter page DigitallyManila criticized Poe for using that kind of PR campaign, saying that it reflects character as a person.

“You just don’t hijack a hash tag and make it part of your social media strategy, it is not only tacky but reflects on your character as a politician and as a person, and if you’re paying a socmed strategist, he is doing you more harm than good,” DigitallyManila wrote.

Netizen Krzy called Grace Poe “desperate” for making such attempts to lure the Fighting Maroon fans for her political campaign.

“This hashtag doesnt seem right to me. Im happy for UP for their finals appearance, but please, dont use this hype for you political agendas, this is ka-cheapan at its finest. So desperate. #AtinNaPOEIto” Krzy said.

Last year, Grace Poe expressed her opposition against using of bots on social media to condition the minds of the people.

“Fake news has become so pervasive through the use of bots and trolls that these fake accounts are able sway public opinion,” Grace Poe said.

Sen. Grace Poe camp is not yet giving a comment on the criticisms they received.

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