Launch of “Spotlight on Anti-Muslim Internet Hate” Campaign

IMAG1104On September 17, the CEO of the Online Hate Prevention Institute Dr Andre Oboler officially launched our major new campaign “Spotlight on Anti-Muslim Internet Hate” (SAMIH) at the La Trobe University along with a crowd-funding appeal to support it. Our launch coincided with the launch of The Agency at the La Trobe University, an initiative that brings together the strategic communications students with organisations for work experience. The Agency students have been assisting OHPI in the promotion of the SAMIH campaign.

SAMIH aims to get individuals and organisations to report anti-Muslim hate on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to the platforms and then to OHPI’s monitoring system It aims:

  • To bring together individuals and organisations, worried about the rising anti-Muslim sentiments, by giving them a common purpose: identifying and reporting anti-Muslim hate speech on social media platforms with the aim of getting it removed. It empowers them to act against the rise in hate speech.
  • To tracks the response of social media platforms to reports of anti-Muslim hate and brings transparency into their report handling processes.
  • To crowd-source hate items to give us a window into the volume and nature of anti-Muslim hate speech on social media and its visibility to the public. This will help government agencies and NGOs build effective counter speech messages to nullify the effects of extremism.
  • To create added monitoring to ensure that the far-right supporters area little more careful in what they say, reducing the escalation of hate speech into incitement to violence.

Dr Oboler said on the launch: “This campaign is particularly important at this point in time, as a range of far-right extremist groups are actively engaging in hate-mongering and vilification of the Australian Muslim community. The approach this campaign adopts has already has great success in other areas of online hate, and we are pleased to now apply it to this important problem.”

12033078_909852249091998_6793386512588992346_nThe SAMIH website went live on September 11, 2015 to mark the 14th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attack. Reporting of hate items will begin on September 24 and continue over the next two months till November 24. We aim to publish a report on the data collected on December 10, which is the International Human Rights Day. You can read the details of the campaign here.

Our online crowd-funding appeal aims to collect a minimum of $5000 dollars to run the campaign and collect the data. However, as discussed on the indiegogo crowd-funding page, extra funding will help us achieve the added goals and features.

The campaign launch has been discussed on SBS Hindi here.

We invite all individuals to join our campaign. Community organisations and government agencies can support our campaign too. You can support us by registering with us and reporting anti-Muslim hate items to our system and/or by donating to us.

We thank La Trobe University for giving us a platform for launching our campaign.

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