Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps is adamant that no, she’s not advocating for churches to be turned to mosques, or spending $21 million on converting all crosswalks into rainbow crosswalks.
The clarification comes after a spoof Facebook account popped up on Sunday claiming to be Helps. The fake account, titled ‘Lisa Helps-Victoria Mayor’ was promptly shut down after the City of Victoria put forward a complaint to Facebook, but not before 100 people followed the page.
Several outlandish, but apparantly satirical posts from the account poke at some of Helps’ actions. While most of the followers noticed it was a joke account, others responded with seemingly sincere comments of disappointment and ridicule. For Helps, this caused great concern.
“It seems to spread pretty quickly because it sounded like me, like ‘hey I’m the mayor and back on Facebook, share positivity – exclamation mark,’ the initial post actually sounded like me and looks like me and it’s very troubling because it wasn’t me,” Helps said Monday afternoon.
“If it were satire I wouldn’t be concerned but it was somebody posing and speaking as me and that is way different. So if you want to create a ‘Lisa doesn’t help’ or ‘Lisa helps?’ satire is fine, I have a very good sense of humour, but this isn’t humorous, because it’s a deliberate spreading of misinformation using my voice. That’s very different.”
Helps stopped using Facebook in March 2018 after she received a large amount of online harassment, calling it a “toxic echo chamber.”
The City said the only way Helps communicates online is through her personal blog or her official Twitter account.
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