July 31 (UPI) -- Twitter activists criticized HBO's decision to order Confederate, a series created by the team behind Game of Thrones that imagines a world in which the Confederacy won the American Civil War.
Under the hastag #NoConfederate, activists like April Reign, who is best-known for starting the #OscarsSoWhite social media campaign, said HBO should rescind its decision to order the series because of its potential racial insensitivity.
"We believe the time to speak up is now, before the show has been written or cast. Before @hbo invests too much money into #Confederate," Reign tweeted.
Timing the Twitter protest to coincide with Sunday's airing of Game of Thrones, the hashtag became the top trending topic of the evening.
"So let's talk about racism & the fantasy genre for a little bit. #NoConfederate," tweeted Bree Newsome, an activist best-known for taking down the Confederate flag from the South Carolina state capitol in 2015. "[Because] #NoConfederate is not simply issue of history, it's also issue of the fantasy genre being largely limited to the fantasies of white men."
Some Twitter users criticized the #NoConfederate protesters by saying there's nothing wrong with a revisionist history series that confronts a controversial possibility and pointed to Amazon's Man in the High Castle as an example. That series imagines a world in which the United States loses World War II to Germany and Japan and the country gets divided into two parts, each controlled by one of the two main Axis powers.
"Why didn't #NoNazi trend when Amazon announced they were doing THE MAN IN THE HIGH CASTLE? Oh right, no one cared. #NoConfederate," tweeted Youtube commentator Matt Jarbo.
HBO addressed the controversy in a statement to the Hollywood Reporter.
"We have great respect for the dialogue and concern being expressed around Confederate," HBO said, adding that executives believe the writers "will approach the subject with care and sensitivity."
The network continued: "The project is currently in its infancy so we hope that people will reserve judgment until there is something to see."