Over 8 in 10 anti-Semitic social media posts weren’t acted on when reported, research finds
Social networks appear to be a platform for anti-Semites. So shows a report titled “Failure to Protect,” produced by researchers from the Center for Combating Digital Hate (CCHR), an American-British NGO.
Between May 28 and June 29, 2021, researchers collected and reported 714 anti-Semitic posts. Spread across Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter and YouTube, they had 7.3 million impressions (the number of times the content was exposed to users).
The researchers then looked at how the social networks reacted to the reports they made. The result is clear: on average, only 16% of the posts were acted on.
And Facebook turned out to be the worst performer in the fight against anti-Semitism. Despite putting in place measures to fight against anti-Jewish hatred, revisionism, and Holocaust denial, the internet giant acted on only 10.9% of posts. The report also mentions the case of an article claiming that the Holocaust was a lie, accompanied by a supremacist meme.
After this was reported, instead of deleting it, the platform simply labeled it as “false information,” allowing it to reach hundreds of thousands of users.
Twitter has also been lax in dealing with the phenomenon, acting on only 11% of the tweets or accounts associated with anti-Semitic “trends” and hashtags, such as #holohoax (often used by Holocaust deniers) or #JewWorldOrder (used to express outrage at an alleged “Jewish conspiracy”).
Instagram and TikTok also allow these anti-Semitic hashtags. In fact, hashtags such as #rothschild, #fakejews and #killthejews have generated up to 3.3 million impressions on Twitter, Instagram and TikTok. The latter two networks have nevertheless acted on about 18% of reported posts, which is better than Facebook, if still largely insufficient.
YouTube, on the other hand, acted on 21% of anti-Semitic content reported online.
In sum, anti-Semitic hate is not being acted on sufficiently on social media. On average, across all platforms, 80% of posts denying the Holocaust, 74% of publications inciting anti-Semitic hatred, 70% of anti-Semitic caricatures, and 70% of neo-Nazi posts were not actioned. In other words, anti-Semitism, unfortunately, prevails on social media. IB
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