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A group of trolls targeted Twitter users with epilepsy with a barrage of strobing images

People are terrible.

Twitter being shown on phone screen for bots
Image: VideoBlocks

Epilepsy is a brain disorder in which a person is susceptible to seizures. A person will be sensitive to, among other things, flashing lights and rapidly flashing animations. Some patients with it cannot drive at night with all the rapidly flashing lights that appear on the side of the road or in towns and cities. With all of those in mind, it can be difficult to live with epilepsy.

So, naturally, assholes had to spam the Epilepsy Foundation’s official Twitter feed with GIFs and lights that would trigger seizures. To make matters worse, the attacks were done during Epilepsy Awareness Month. By locating hashtags with a high activity relating to epilepsy and tagging the foundation’s account, these flashing images would show up.

Twitter trolls attacked those suffering from epilepsy with flashing images

Allison Nichol, the foundation’s Director of Legal Advocacy is justifiably disgusted by these attacks.

These attacks are no different than a person carrying a strobe light into a convention of people with epilepsy and seizures, with the intention of inducing seizures and thereby causing significant harm to the participants. The fact that these attacks came during National Epilepsy Awareness Month only highlights their reprehensible nature.

The Epilepsy Foundation found that there were over 30 different accounts that were sending these tweets. They are pursuing legal action, as well. The foundation has filed a criminal complaint against these accounts, as well as requests for an investigation into these attacks.

Twitter is also going to start expanding its toolset to protect its users from these types of abuse. Currently, there are options to prevent media from playing on their feeds, which can help with these kinds of harmful tweets.

What do you think? Surprised people will stoop this low? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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