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8 Jan, 2015 02:25

#JeSuisCharlie: Social media reacts to Charlie Hebdo massacre

#JeSuisCharlie: Social media reacts to Charlie Hebdo massacre

​The news that three masked gunmen stormed the office of French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and killed 12 people has shaken the world, sparking a massive response on social media.

In addition to the 12 killed, another 11 people have been injured – four of whom are reportedly in critical condition.

In response, people around the world have rallied to show solidarity with the victims and condemn the brutal violence. At the same time, various debates over the proper way to respond to the tragedy have also cropped up.

Responses began with the trending hashtag #JeSuisCharlie, which translates from French to English as “I am Charlie.”

I very rarely break from my pink and black palette, but this day calls for it #jesuischarliepic.twitter.com/MtIbJKR77T

— Amy Burvall (@amyburvall) January 7, 2015

I am devastated by what just happened in France. #CharlieHebdopic.twitter.com/IxEbScqYFh

— jean jullien (@jean_jullien) January 7, 2015

Numerous cartoonists and journalists also seized on the words of Charlie Hebdo’s editor-in-chief, Gerard Biard, who was in London at the time of the attack. He said: "I don't understand how people can attack a newspaper with heavy weapons. A newspaper is not a weapon of war."

As a result, many artists played off of his words, depicting the apparent power of the pen.

Can't sleep tonight, thoughts with my French cartooning colleagues, their families and loved ones #CharlieHebdopic.twitter.com/LqIMRCHPgK

— David Pope (@davpope) January 7, 2015

MT @satishacharya: The little weapon! #CharlieHebdo#cartoonpic.twitter.com/jR0A91n495

— Rakesh Lakhani (@rakesh_lakhani) January 7, 2015

RT Fashi0nGeekette: RT laloalcaraz: I just drew this on a plane to Houston, please share for #CharlieHebdopic.twitter.com/gcg9Nh6BDq

— Lucas #JeSuisCharlie (@lucspl) January 8, 2015

Break one, thousand will rise #CharlieHebdo#JeSuisCharlie #raiseyourpencilforfreedompic.twitter.com/3n5fOEmrwJ

— Lucille Clerc (@LucilleClerc) January 7, 2015

Others, meanwhile, connected the shooting to past terror attacks.


— Ruben L. Oppenheimer (@RLOppenheimer) January 7, 2015

Political cartoonist Carlos Latuff noted that the acts of the gunmen, apparently Muslims who shouted “Allahu Akbar” during their rampage, are actually defiling Islam itself.

Regarding Islam, debates broke out over the internet over the consequences of the shooting. Some claimed the violence will strengthen critics of the religion moving forward, while others said it will serve to increase Islamophobia around the world.

Islamophobia after #CharlieHebdo (Latuff) pic.twitter.com/ahamPUgVp2

— Gilles Klein (@GillesKLEIN) January 7, 2015

One hashtag that popped up over the course of the day was “#KillAllMuslims,” but it was soon overtaken by people responding to that trend with disgust or by satirizing the sentiment in their own way.

Now it’s time to arm yourself, cartoonists, magazines and newspapers! With pen and ink! RT @oleismos: #CharlieHebdopic.twitter.com/FqqrRJh4jZ

— Jørgen Munkeby (@jorgenmunkeby) January 7, 2015

Media critics were also out in force on Wednesday, as many called on newspapers and other outlets to post the controversial cartoons originally published by Charlie Hebdo. Some readers in the UK called the newspapers “cowardly” for declining to do so. However, some outlets in Germany ran the cartoons on their front pages, uncensored.

Our cowardly UK press: not a single UK newspaper has dared show a single #CharlieHebdo cartoon on its front page pic.twitter.com/MGJDknPNA8#fb

— Andrew Emerson (@aoemerson) January 7, 2015

Props to the German newspapers who more or less all seem to be publishing the Charlie Hebdo cartoons on their front covers tomorrow.

— Kristofer Keane (@KristoferKeane) January 7, 2015

Despite Charlie Hebdo’s affinity for skewering religions of all kind, some cartoonists emphasized a more spiritual angle in their tweets.


— Tommy dessine (@Tommydessine) January 7, 2015


— FO Sanofi A. Groupe (@fo_sag) January 8, 2015