Free Netflix, sex chats: Callers lured to 'support CAA'

Free Netflix, sex chats: Callers lured to 'support CAA'

The brains behind the campaign felt 'Support CAA' was not such a great idea to inspire netizens to dial a number. So, they apparently unleashed a mindboggling range of goodies from free streaming videos to free job connections. Some tweets even linked the number to phone sex operators.

How does one get a free Netflix subscription, free job connections and free goodies by dialling just one number? You probably could, if that number was 8866288662! But the smart ones knew it was a bait to get a missed call that would register your 'support' for the Citizenship (Amendment) Act!  

Stung by widespread protests against the controversial Act, the Centre and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) had worked out the counter strategy by asking people: Register support for the CAA by giving a missed call to 8866288662. But it backfired on social media.

The brains behind the campaign felt 'Support CAA' was not such a great idea to inspire netizens to dial a number. So, they apparently unleashed a mindboggling range of goodies from free streaming videos to free job connections. Some tweets even linked the number to phone sex operators.

Then came the real pranksters, the trolls, the influencers in droves. Call the number and await delivery of a free Apple TV, said one. “Sunny Leone will be live for the next two hours. Speak to her on 8866288662,” claimed another, tongue firmly in cheek.

But the sports buffs were not ready to say 'game over.' Stepped in one with this salvo: “Those who want Virat Kohli to be nominated as the best cricketer of the year, dial...” Hooked to politics, another tweet followed fast: “If you want UP CM to resign, dial....”

The same number repeating on multiple click-baits was too much of a coincidence. When many refused to be hoodwinked and cornered the Twitter accounts behind the baits, they tried an alibi. The associations were just a 'prank,' they claimed, although not many bought it.

As the number gained traction, so did the Memes that came in truckloads, flooding every social media platform. Many found a connection between the Twitter accounts promoting the number and the BJP IT Cell. They called it a desperate measure in desperate times.

But streaming giant Netflix had to clarify quickly. It had absolutely no intention to offer free six-month subscriptions just because someone would dial the number. Its tweet read: “This is absolutely fake. If you want free Netflix please use someone else's account like the rest of us.”

By Saturday evening, the anti-CAA protesters had a counter to the missed call campaign. WeThePeople, a collective of about 100 organisations trending hashtags NoToCAA, NoToNPR, NoToNationawideNRC had their own number for a missed call: 7787060606.

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