Thursday, September 14, 2017

Is Facebook the New Safe Haven for Neo-Nazis?

During the now-infamous Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Va., last month, members of the so-called alt-right movement marched past the local Reform synagogue, Congregation Beth Israel, holding flaming tiki torches and yelling “Jews will not replace us” and “Sieg Heil!” In the aftermath of one of the most public displays of anti-Semitism and white supremacy in years, condemnation came from far and wide. And on social media, the response was also swift: Facebook reacted by removing or restricting some of the most extreme groups that were using its platform.

And yet, even amid the clampdown, racist and anti-Semitic groups and individuals in Canada continue to spread hateful messages and organize demonstrations on Facebook.

The “alt-right” movement, which contains white nationalist, white supremacist and neo-Nazi groups, emerged out of websites like 4chan, Reddit and the neo-Nazi news and the comment site Stormfront – platforms that are largely anonymous and thus make it difficult to trace individual contributors. But on Facebook, the situation is quite different. A lot of individuals associated with the “alt-right” have been using the site to form groups and organize events. And as the “alt-right” movement moves from an online subculture to a political force that’s staging public demonstrations, social media, and specifically Facebook, has become their go-to destination.  (more...)

No comments:

Post a Comment