FARGO-Some local hunters are firing back at People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals after the animal rights organization launched a Facebook photo frame built around their "shoot selfies, not animals" campaign.
The frame, which is available to add to a personal profile picture on Facebook, acts as a filter over the profile picture. The frame adds the text "shoot selfies, not animals" over the top of the photo near the bottom. A deer's head is also included to the right of the text, along with with the name of the organization, PETA.
The frame has caught the attention of many local hunters, who have since added the frame to their own profile photo where they are pictured with a variety of dead animals in an effort to troll PETA.
The effort by the hunting community has caught the attention of the animal rights organization, who has responded saying that the hunters efforts to troll PETA has "introduced PETA's anti-hunting message to a whole new audience." PETA says that more than 250,000 people have now used the frame in their profile picture, and is now the No. 1-used frame on Facebook currently.
"These trigger-happy trolls didn't realize that they were helping to spread PETA's message of respect for wildlife," PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman said in an email. "Supportive messages are pouring in from people who agree that only bullies or cowards get their kicks from gunning down a beautiful wild animal."
PETA also says that the added attention has resulted in a 50 percent increase in "likes" on the organization's official Facebook page from Tuesday, Aug. 22 through Wednesday, Aug. 23.
In a blog post on PETA's website, PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman said, "PETA owes a big thank you to the would-be trolls who are spreading our message of compassion."
Despite PETA's response, the hunting community has continued to use the frame in an effort to throw off PETA's Facebook campaign.
"So OBVIOUSLY the #PETA filter was an epic #FAIL!" one woman wrote on Facebook as she poses with a dead bear.
The woman encouraged her Facebook audience to do the same saying: "So let's play! Drop your filtered hunting photos in the comments of this post!! See how many we can get!"
The post has resulted in 72 comments, most of which contain photos of hunters with the PETA frame over their profile picture. This is just one example of many on Facebook from the hunting community.