Rebel reviewers: Social media review pages as sites of Confederate memorial discourses




social media, reviews, political discourse, Confederate monuments


Online review platforms — such as Facebook Pages, Yelp, and Google Reviews — host millions of user-generated posts. Some reviewers choose to use these platforms to share political opinions and calls for activism. One example of this phenomenon, UNC–Chapel Hill’s “Silent Sam” Confederate statue review page on Facebook, provides an opportunity to examine comments from users asserting their pro-statue and anti-statue opinions. While protestors removed the statue in August 2018, its unofficial page (and its posts) remains visible online and continues to garner new “reviews” after the monument’s physical removal. This study analyzes the engagement publicly visible on Silent Sam’s Facebook reviews. Despite the large volume of research on social network sites, the author is unaware of any studies of activist posts on online review spaces. Discovering the most prevalent claims made in pro-Confederate posts will help educators, activists, online moderators, and creators of Terms of Service agreements determine where they can (and should) respond to racist rhetoric.

Author Biography

Laura March, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Laura March is an instructional designer and Web developer. She holds a M.Ed. in Learning, Design, and Technology and a M.S. in Art Education from the Pennsylvania State University and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. at the School of Information and Library Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.




How to Cite

March, L. (2020). Rebel reviewers: Social media review pages as sites of Confederate memorial discourses. First Monday, 25(12).