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Thursday, February 25, 2021

Rihanna and Taylor Swift lead stars taking part in Blackout Tuesday

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Rihanna and Taylor Swift were among the stars taking part in Blackout Tuesday to protest against the death of George Floyd.

Social media platforms were flooded by black squares as a wave of protests swept across the US after Mr Floyd died in police custody, with an officer charged with his murder.

The “blackout” movement was initially aimed solely at the music industry, with organisers behind #TheShowMustBePaused calling for a day of reflection.

However, it soon spread beyond the industry as social media users around the world shared black squares online.

Rihanna posted a black square and revealed her Fenty beauty brand would be suspending business for the day.

She said: “we ain’t buying shit!!! and we ain’t selling shit neither!! gang gang!”

Swift also shared a black square and wrote in the caption: “Black Lives Matter.”

Ariana Grande changed her Instagram profile to a black square while sharing links to Black Lives Matter resources and urging fans to vote in the presidential primary elections.

Kylie Jenner was another calling for people to vote.

Sir Rod Stewart tweeted a black square with white text which stated: “As a singer I would not have had the success that I’ve had if it wasn’t for the great black artists that came before me.

“Sam Cooke, Muddy Waters, Otis Redding and many more.”

While dozens of stars took part in the blackout project, Grammy-winning rapper Lil Nas X believed a day of silence risked a “slow down” of momentum.

He tweeted: “I know y’all mean well but… bro saying stop posting for a day is the worst idea ever. I just really think this is the time to push as hard as ever. I don’t think the movement has ever been this powerful. We don’t need to slow it down by posting nothing. We need to spread info and be as loud as ever.”

He also wrote that “this is not helping us” and that people “need to see what’s going on.”

He added: “Not tryna be announcing but what if we posted donation and petitions links on Instagram all at the same time instead of pitch black images.”

And others, including Lizzo, Kumail Nanjiani and Kehlani, urged their followers not to use the Black Lives Matter hashtag because it was “flooding” social media with blank images instead of information.

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