On December 16, newspaper “რეზონანსი” and clickbait webpage footbal.ge published an article based on women’s rights activist Baia Pataraia‘s Facebook post. The headline of the publication includes the quote "So Fed Up With Poor People?!”. The post was about Tbilisi Mayor gifting an apartment to a socially vulnerable Aluashvili family and had photos of Pataria and child and a parent from the aforesaid family attached.
Baia Pataraia’s Facebook post was of sarcastic nature and the media reported it without context and altered content. Quote lacked the part about the Tbilisi Mayor and gave off the impression that women's rights activist's criticism targeted the socially vulnerable family and not the Tbilisi Mayor.
- In reality, Baia Pataraia’s sarcasm was aimed at the Tbilisi Mayor
On December 16, women’s rights activist Baia Pataraia indeed published a post on her Facebook account, in which she sarcastically addresses the Tbilisi Mayor. Sarcasm was derived from the events that took place in the Afrika district. On December 15, per Tbilisi City Hall Order, municipal inspection demolished 12 constructions, the society tried to fight back and save the houses, and that is when a shot of Father and son Aluashvili was captured. The photo went viral and awoke social solidarity and harsh criticism of the local government. On December 16, Kakhi Kaladze spread the information that he gifted an apartment to the Aluashvili family.
In Pataraia’s post, the phrase in the title - “So fed up with the poor people” is followed by the wording: “Those who can’t even put 100 dollar bills on the Christmas tree criticize the Mayor for his charity and kindness”. This phrase indicates that her criticism targets the Tbilisi Mayor and hints at the time when his wife decorated the Christmas tree with dollar bills in 2010, which caused society’s harsh criticism. Without this phrase, the quote gives off the impression that Pataraia ridicules and mocks socially vulnerable people and not the Tbilisi Mayor.
Pataraia herself responded to the quote spread without context and noted that the post is deliberately disseminated without both, context and intended sarcasm
It’s not the first attempt at discrediting Baia Pataraia using quotes. Screenshots of fake quotes from human rights activists Baia Pataraia and Ida Bakhturidze were disseminated in January 2020.
Prepared by Mariam Dangadze
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