The White House's "We the People" online petition site recently has been notable for the frivolous posts that gain traction there, but a serious one is taking off following the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

The petition calls on the White House to "Immediately address the issue of gun control through the introduction of legislation in Congress" and is quickly on its way to earning the 25,000 electronic signatures required for a response from the White House. 

As of 5:25 p.m. ET on Friday, there were 15,113 signatures, several thousand more than there were just 20 minutes before. 

At least five other similar petitions had been created on the site on Friday with several hundred signatures each. 

As the signatures were accumulating on those petitions, a real protest was underway outside the White House. 

Live blog: Updates on the Newtown school shooting