facebook » ADL Blogs
Posts Tagged ‘facebook’
February 9, 2016 71

White Supremacist Messages Flood Facebook After Anti-Semitic Posting by Ted Nugent

Rock musi­cian and right-wing activist Ted Nugent sur­prised many of his fol­low­ers on Feb­ru­ary 8 when he posted to his Face­book page a bla­tantly anti-Semitic graphic that labeled a dozen promi­nent sup­port­ers of gun con­trol mea­sures as Jews and asked “So who is really behind gun control?”

Angelo John Gage

Angelo John Gage

The graphic was one that had cir­cu­lated in white suprema­cist cir­cles for sev­eral years before Nugent gave it new life, telling his fol­low­ers to “Know these punks. They hate free­dom, they hate good over evil…you know how evil they are.”

To their credit, a num­ber of Nugent fans expressed dis­may at his post­ing. One prophetic Nugent fol­lower, a self-described 40-year fan, described the post as “appalling” and informed the aging rocker that he had just “opened the gates for hun­dreds of Jew haters and Holo­caust deniers to pour out their garbage on your page.”

Sadly, that was exactly what hap­pened. Pre­dictably, white suprema­cists and anti-Semites flooded to Nugent’s Face­book page to endorse his post and share it with their own Face­book friends (in less than 24 hours, the post had been shared over 2,800 times). Hun­dreds of white suprema­cists rushed to exploit and amplify Nugent’s post with their own pro­pa­ganda, includ­ing a num­ber of promi­nent white suprema­cists, such as for­mer Klans­man David Duke, neo-Nazi David Pringle, Tra­di­tion­al­ist Youth Net­work founder Matt Heim­bach and for­mer National Youth Front leader Angelo John Gage.

Gage, a white suprema­cist activist, blog­ger and occa­sional polit­i­cal can­di­date, helped start the rush when he quickly posted a YouTube video about Nugent’s post­ing, say­ing “it shows all these Jews, all of them,” and urg­ing like-minded peo­ple to go to Face­book and “start blast­ing” anti-Semitic pro­pa­ganda. Gage was not alone. Scott Roberts, another anti-Semite, posted his own YouTube video about the inci­dent, explain­ing that “we seized this oppor­tu­nity, Angelo, myself, David Duke…we are inject­ing that anti-Semitic truth, and tak­ing the point [Nugent] ini­tially came out with and ham­mer­ing it home.”

On the white suprema­cist dis­cus­sion forum Storm­front, neo-Nazis and other white suprema­cists made sim­i­lar pleas. “Any­one that is pro-white or ‘alt-right’,” posted user “Raven­Claw, “needs to jump on this and com­ment. Post David Duke videos on there.” Another Storm­fron­ter, “Pol­ish­SlavAryan,” asked, “Can we all work together as a team to make it go viral? The main­stream needs to know.” An Ore­gon Storm­fron­ter explained that “even at this early point the expo­sure is priceless…Some will look into the ‘jew­ish prob­lem’ a bit fur­ther. Win.”

Hun­dreds of anti-Semites indeed flocked to Nugent’s Face­book page to share their opin­ions of Jews. “Jews are the exis­ten­tial enemy to the white race and need to be exter­mi­nated off the face of [the] Earth,” wrote a Face­book user with the screen name “Max Macro.” User Dan Dean echoed those sen­ti­ments: “Zion­ists Jews are your dead­liest enemy. Vir­tual wolves in sheep’s cloth­ing. Deep dark­ness cloaked in a false light.” Oth­ers took the oppor­tu­nity to pro­mote anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­ries, Holo­caust denial, and anti-Semitic stereo­types, epi­thets and canards.

A Face­book user with the Holocaust-themed screen name “Zykklon Beaner” urged Nugent not to retract his state­ment: “No apolo­gies, Ted, stick by your guns, lit­er­ally and fig­u­ra­tively! F__k these sup­posed ‘cho­sen’ Zion­ist scum!”

So far, Nugent has nei­ther apol­o­gized for or deleted his post. To date, his only reac­tion was to make another post in which he raged against peo­ple who had called his orig­i­nal mes­sage anti-Semitic and asked how any­one “could pos­si­bly not know that Jews for gun con­trol are Nazis in dis­guise?” Mean­while, he wrote, “I adjust my yamika [sic] at my bar­mitzva [sic] play­ing my kosher guitar.”

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

November 3, 2015 1

“Telegram” is Latest Platform for Terror Propaganda

ISIS propaganda on the Telegram app

ISIS pro­pa­ganda on the Telegram app

Update — 11/19/2015: Telegram updated its terms of ser­vice to include a means for remov­ing ille­gal pub­lic con­tent on Novem­ber 18, 2015 and has since removed mul­ti­ple ISIS chan­nels from its platform.

As the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and other ter­ror groups con­tinue to seek out new plat­forms to broad­cast their pro­pa­ganda and con­nect with sup­port­ers, they have migrated to using Telegram, a chat and group appli­ca­tion avail­able for smart­phones and desk­top, as their pri­mary medium for offi­cial propaganda.

Ter­ror sup­port­ers con­tinue to share and dis­sem­i­nate pro­pa­ganda on Twit­ter, Face­book and other tra­di­tional social media plat­forms. How­ever, the terms of ser­vice on those plat­forms reject users who actively encour­age vio­lent extrem­ism and the plat­forms have been very active in remov­ing con­tent and users flagged for vio­la­tions of those terms of ser­vice. Offi­cial ter­ror­ist accounts have there­fore found them fully inhos­pitable, and even the accounts of ter­ror­ist sup­port­ers are reg­u­larly removed.

Accord­ing to Telegram’s terms of ser­vice, how­ever, “All Telegram chats and group chats are pri­vate ter­ri­tory of their respec­tive par­tic­i­pants and we do not process any requests related to them.” As such, the plat­form does not have effec­tive poli­cies pro­hibit­ing extrem­ist speech.  That envi­ron­ment has enabled offi­cial ter­ror­ist chan­nels to use Telegram as the first point of dis­sem­i­na­tion for offi­cial ISIS pro­pa­ganda and for Global Islamic Media Front (GIMF), an Al Qaeda affil­i­ated media organization.

Users can join groups on Telegram that func­tion sim­i­larly to Twit­ter feeds, releas­ing a steady stream of con­tent orig­i­nated by the group’s owner. Among the groups cur­rently oper­at­ing on Telegram are more than 13 offi­cial ISIS accounts in mul­ti­ple lan­guages includ­ing Ara­bic, Eng­lish, French and Ger­man, an offi­cial English-language account for the GIMF, and sev­eral unof­fi­cial pro-ISIS pro­pa­ganda groups.

The English-language accounts cre­ated on Telegram include Khi­lafah News, a pro-ISIS account that boasts 2023 mem­bers; Nashir Eng­lish, an offi­cial ISIS account, with 1352 mem­bers; and an offi­cial GIMF account with 1129 members.

Among the mate­ri­als that have been released on Telegram are the sec­ond issue of a new English-language Al Qaeda mag­a­zine, Al Risalah, which calls on West­ern­ers to join and fight on behalf of Al Qaeda.

The ISIS English-language Telegram account Nashir Eng­lish also directs read­ers to find and down­load pro­pa­ganda on a site on Word­Press. Like Telegram, WordPress’s terms of ser­vice do not explic­itly pro­hibit extrem­ist pro­pa­ganda, and so ISIS and other ter­ror­ist  groups can exploit the web­site with­out fear of being taken down. The new Word­Press site linked from the Telegram account fea­tures all of ISIS’s most recent pro­pa­ganda releases as well as ‘major releases,’ ‘Top 10 Videos,’ and past issues of ISIS’s English-language mag­a­zine, Dabiq. The Eng­lish site also links to equiv­a­lent Word­Press sites in Ger­man, Bosn­ian and Ara­bic. Addi­tional links from the Eng­lish site to equiv­a­lent sites in other lan­guages on Blogspot, which is hosted by Google, were removed after ADL noti­fied Google of their presence.

The Word­Press site empha­sizes ISIS’s ongo­ing pres­ence on Twit­ter and lists Twit­ter hash­tags that cor­re­spond with offi­cial ISIS pro­pa­ganda material.

In addi­tion to main­tain­ing groups on Telegram, ter­ror orga­ni­za­tions are also able to engage in chats with sup­port­ers and poten­tial recruits. The encour­age­ment of active par­tic­i­pa­tion by sup­port­ers engages the sup­port­ers in dia­logue with hard­ened extrem­ists, fur­ther­ing the sup­port­ers’ rad­i­cal­iza­tion processes.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

October 20, 2015 Off

This Intifada is in Your Social Media Feed

By Jonathan Green­blatt
CEO of the Anti-Defamation League

This arti­cle orig­i­nally appeared on The Times of Israel Blog

The knife, bran­dished in the air and drip­ping with blood, is the icon of the cur­rent wave of Pales­tin­ian vio­lence against Israelis. This visual is the new sym­bol cel­e­brat­ing the seem­ingly non-stop pro­lif­er­a­tion of attacks by Pales­tini­ans against Israelis – many of them stab­bings – and incites more hate, more ter­ror, more vio­lence to an audi­ence primed to act on it.

“The Social Media Intifada” is the title being used for the cur­rent spate of ter­ror attacks, fea­tured on Face­book and other social media plat­forms, where Pales­tin­ian attack­ers are cel­e­brated as mar­tyrs, heroes and even as vic­tims of Israeli bru­tal­ity. On Twit­ter, poten­tial ter­ror­ists are exhorted to stab and kill Jews. Videos of Mus­lim preach­ers call­ing for attacks on Jews (one while hold­ing a knife),even instruc­tional videos on how to stab effec­tively, go viral. Pro­lif­er­at­ing on social media are car­toons of attacks on Israelis and alle­ga­tions of a Jewish/Israeli con­spir­acy to take over the Al Aqsa mosque.

Pales­tin­ian incite­ment to vio­lence isn’t new, but the medium and the method is. Dur­ing pre­vi­ous peri­ods of Pales­tin­ian vio­lence – such as the Sec­ond Intifada – we saw calls for vio­lence and wide­spread anti-Israel and anti-Semitic con­spir­acy the­o­ries. Pub­lic squares, parks and schools were named in honor of those who per­pe­trated ter­ror­ist attacks against Israeli civil­ians. Pop­u­lar songs cel­e­brated the attack­ers. But behind most of the prior vio­lent chap­ters of the con­flict, it was the Pales­tin­ian lead­er­ship – the PLO, Hamas, Fatah, the Pales­tin­ian Author­ity, and oth­ers – who were pro­mot­ing and enabling the hate-filled mes­sages and the vio­lent action. Last Autumn, while social media emerged as a means of cel­e­brat­ing and encour­ag­ing vio­lence against Israelis, its impact was limited.

To be sure, in this cur­rent period, PA Pres­i­dent Abbas and other lead­er­ship are poi­son­ing the atmos­phere with incen­di­ary rhetoric. His fan­tas­ti­cal alle­ga­tion last week that Israel had “exe­cuted” a Pales­tin­ian boy – who was in real­ity being treated in an Israeli hos­pi­tal after stab­bing a 13-year-old rid­ing his bicy­cle near his Jerusalem home – is only the most recent example.

How­ever, at present, Israeli secu­rity experts say social media – not Pales­tin­ian lead­ers – is the pri­mary force dri­ving the vio­lence. The incite­ment, the mis­in­for­ma­tion, and the hate that inspire the stab­bings, shoot­ings, rock throw­ing and car ram­ming attacks are spread­ing via smart phone — and con­stantly. Ter­ror­ists who were killed mid-attack are upheld as heroes and mar­tyrs, their deadly actions ignored.

And, yes, there are also Israelis who are post­ing hate-filled incen­di­ary mes­sages, includ­ing calls for “death to Arabs” and a “sec­ond Nakba.” While there have been only a hand­ful of vio­lent attacks by Israelis against Arabs in recent weeks, the risk of more Israeli vio­lence increases as this cri­sis goes on.

Social media can mobi­lize for good and for evil. Demo­c­ra­tic forces in the Jas­mine Rev­o­lu­tion and Tahrir Square used Twit­ter and Face­book to orga­nize against author­i­tar­ian rule in the Arab Spring. Viral videos of peo­ple dump­ing ice water on their heads raised mil­lions to find a cure for ALS. Social media has raised pub­lic aware­ness of a plethora of social jus­tice issues – from #Bring­Back­Our­Girls to #Black­Lives­Mat­ter. But social media has also enabled ISIS and other extrem­ist ter­ror­ist groups and their sup­port­ers to recruit youth from around the world to join their vio­lent cause. And on this side of the ledger, we can add the cur­rent wave of violence.

ADL pro­motes two approaches to address this prob­lem: remov­ing incen­di­ary speech and chal­leng­ing hate speech with good speech. For years, we have been work­ing with social media com­pa­nies to improve poli­cies and pro­to­cols for the removal of con­tent that incites vio­lence or big­otry, con­tent that is con­trary to the com­pa­nies’ terms of ser­vice. But we also pro­mote counter-speech, where activists and all con­cerned peo­ple use social media to con­demn vio­lence, to urge mod­er­a­tion, and even to try to dis­suade poten­tial ter­ror­ists before they move to action.

The real­ity is, what hap­pens online reflects what’s going on in soci­ety. In order for counter-speech to be an effec­tive tool address­ing the “social media Intifada,” those with influ­ence, whether in the online world or in world capi­tols, need to con­demn Pales­tin­ian incite­ment and ter­ror­ism clearly and unequiv­o­cally. Inter­net users who come across calls for vio­lence online, should report it imme­di­ately to the inter­net provider (see our guide to learn how). In many cases, such con­tent vio­lates their terms of ser­vice and the page will be removed.

The social media com­pa­nies we work with are mak­ing good faith efforts to enforce their poli­cies, but the con­tent that appears online can­not be divorced from real-world hate. It is still too early to know how this cur­rent chap­ter in the Israeli-Palestinian con­flict will develop. Let’s hope respon­si­ble voices and action prevail.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,