Facebook announced tonight (Monday) a policy update on hate speech and the removal of Holocaust denial content, including a distortion of its historical documentation, which will be valid for both Facebook and Instagram. Under the new policy, the publication of content that denies or distorts the Holocaust will be completely banned.
“Hate speech trends research organizations around the world are reporting an increase in online attacks against many groups, and we continue our efforts to remove such content. We have blocked more than 250 white supremacist groups and updated our policies to include militia and QANon groups,” it said. “In addition, we routinely block individuals and organizations who violate our anti-hate speech policy; in the second quarter of this year alone, we removed 22.5 million hate speech from the platform.”
Facebook stressed that “after a year of working closely with external experts, we also recently banned the publication of antisemitic stereotypes about the collective power of Jews, who sometimes describe the Jewish people as running the world, or the world’s major institutions. Today’s announcement marks another step in our effort. “Fight hatred on the platform and it is supported by the well-documented rise of anti-Semitism in the world and the alarming level of ignorance, especially among young people, about the Holocaust.”
Just a few months ago, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in an interview with the technology website recode that he does not think Facebook should remove content that denies the Holocaust. “We have a lot of responsibility,” he said at the time. “I am a Jew and there are people who deny the Holocaust. It’s insulting and very hurtful, but I do not believe we need to remove it, because there are things that people misunderstand. “
He says, “They don’t always do it on purpose. There are times when both I and big leaders don’t understand things properly and I think it’s not right to remove people from the platform if they don’t understand something, even if it happens several times.” He explained that “in this case, people can post it on their page, as long as they do not threaten to harm anyone.” A few hours after the incident, Zuckerberg sent a letter to the podcast presenter and the website, in which he stressed that he did not “support and support Holocaust deniers.”
According to a recent survey of U.S. adults aged 18-39, about a quarter of respondents believe that the Holocaust is a myth, that it is over-presented, or that they are unsure. The key elements in the fight against anti-Semitism: Later this year, they will direct anyone who conducts a Facebook search around terms related to the Holocaust or its denial to reliable information outside of Facebook.
“For many years we have been working closely with communities around the world, with the aim of better understanding how hatred, including anti-Semitism, is expressed online,” the company said. “These efforts include ongoing discussions with multinational groups, such as the World Jewish Congress and the American Jewish Committee, as well as organizations defending local Jewish communities, such as the United Kingdom Community Security Organization (CST) and anti-Semitic institutions such as the Simon Wiesenthal Center.”
“Full enforcement of such a policy cannot take place overnight. Different types of content can violate policies and it will take us some time to train our content testers and systems. We are grateful to our many partners for their openness and willingness to help our efforts keep our platform secure.”
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