The Online Hate Prevention Institute released a major new report into antisemitism on Facebook to coincide with the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on March 21st 2013.
The new report tracks the response to a number of antisemitic items on Facebook. Some of the items were included in OHPI’s previous report in 2012 into Aboriginal Memes and Online Hate, others are new in 2013. The report shows how some items are removed by Facebook while others remain online, some for more than 6 months. The report examines what Facebook removes and what sort of content Facebook does not consider hate speech and refuses to remove. The findings show that Facebook does not really understand antisemitism and has trouble recognizing certain very well known types of antisemitism.
The report shows Facebook has difficulty identifying racism directly based on Nazi propaganda; consistently refusing to recognize as hate speech pages promoting the famous antisemitic forgery used to inspire mass killings, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion; and failing to take action on new antisemitism which uses Holocaust inversion to paint Israel and Jews as Nazis. These blind spots can be added to the known difficulty Facebook has in recognizing Holocaust denial as Hate Speech.
This report is a major piece of work of similar importance to past work by OHPI’s Director, Dr Andre Oboler, including his work on Antisemitism 2.0, Replacement Geography on Google Earth, and Holocaust denial on Facebook. It uses a similar approach to OHPI’s major 2012 report into Aboriginal Memes and online hate (which focused on online hate against Indigenous Australians).
This report highlights once again the importance of the work OHPI does. In addition to signing the petition, you can support this work by joining us on Facebook, following us on Twitter and donating to support future work. Help share this report:
- The advanced Press Release announcing the report will be released
- The press release after the report was launched
- Launch notes for The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
- The report’s blurb
- The recommendations
- Public endorsements for this report
- Our request to buy advertising to promote the post announcing the launch was rejected by Facebook. Facebook have since sent us an e-mail with further clarification, this opens a range of issues which we will discuss on Monday the 25th of March.
Media & Blog Coverage
Over the next few days OHPI will update this page to include links to a selection of articles and blog posts relating to this report. Please contact us if you would like suggest an item for inclusion here.
- Israel Matzav, “Major report into racism on Facebook“, March 20 2013
- David Werdiger, “The Hate Network“, The Times of Israel, March 21 2013
- “Hate on Facebook“, J-wire, March 21 2013
- Sarah Brown, “New report from OHPI on hate speech and social media“, Engage, 21 March 2013
- ‘Facebook’s Anti-Semitism Problem‘, Galus Australis, 21 March 2013
- Elders of Ziyon, “Major report released on antisemitism in Facebook“, March 21 2013
- “Anti-Semitism and Anti-Israelism“, Scholars for Peace in the Middle East, March 21 2013
- Andre Oboler, “If you can’t Recognize Hate Speech, the sunlight can’t penetrate“, The Louis D. Brandeis Center Blog, March 22 2013
- “Crece la preocupación por los mensajes antisemitas en la red social Facebook“, Jewish News Agency (Argentina), March 22 2013 (NB: in Spanish) | Also at Iton Gadol.
- “Antisemitism on Facebook investigated“, israel-palestijnen News Blog, March 22 2013 (in Dutch)
- Take Action News with David Shuster on We Act Radio (USA), March 23, 2013
- Andre Oboler, “Facebook’s blind spot to Antisemitism“, Jerusalem Post Blogs, March 25 2013
- Andre Oboler, “Branding Facebook: Power and Impact“, Cutting Edge News, March 25 2013
- Eric Bender, “Steady Increase in Networks promoting Antisemitism“, Maariv, April 3 2013 (in Hebrew)
- Elinor Fuks, “Righteous network: Bloggers fight antisemitism“, Mako, April 7 2013 (in Hebrew)
- Tal Frost, “Anti-Semitism in information era“, Ynet News, April 8 2013