"It means thanks, it means admiration, it means good-bye to someone you love." - Suzanne Collins, The Hunger Games.
Any Hunger Games fan knows what Katniss' three-fingered salute means; a symbol of resistance, a silent act of rebellion.
But the gesture, made famous by the movie franchise based on Suzanne Collins' novels, is being used as a real symbol of resistance in Thailand. Protesters against the military coup are adopting the three-fingered mark of opposition - and they're being threatened with arrest if they ignore warnings to stop.
Over the weekend, Thai authorities deployed thousands soldiers and police in Bangkok to prevent planned protests against the coup. Despite this, small flash mobs appeared in a central shopping district where the salute was unveiled for the first time.
One protestor, Manik Sethisuwan, tweeted this:
In The Hunger Games series, the salute is a symbol of rebellion against totalitarian rule and stands for thank you, admiration and goodbye to someone you love... And in banning the symbol the authorities show themselves to be just like the Capitol!
Banning gestures? Next comes face crime, then thought crime!
This isn't the first time that movie symbols have been adopted for real-life political causes. In 2008, the anarchic, digitized global brain Anonymous adopted the Guy Fawkes mask as used in V for Vendetta and made it their symbol, with V for Vendetta comic artist David Lloyd stating that:
The Guy Fawkes mask has now become a common brand and a convenient placard to use in protest against tyranny – and I'm happy with people using it, it seems quite unique, an icon of popular culture being used this way.
Well, as worldwide hit movies about revolutionaries, V for Vendetta and The Hunger Games were bound to inspire some young people to speak up and act out.
What do you think about real life imitating The Hunger Games?
(Source: BBC News)