Monday, January 18, 2016

'Zuckerberg don't kill us!' Facebook incitement battle heats up - Ari Soffer

by Ari Soffer

Israeli rights group to rent billboards outside Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's home to force him to stop ignoring rampant incitement.

Since the major escalation in Arab terrorist attacks in Israel began at the start of October last year, Israelis have consistently complained about the use of social media to incite terrorism and glorify "martyrdom," and the lack of enforcement by social media companies.

Indeed, analysts and Israeli officials alike have noted that the current wave of terror was preceded by months of ceaseless, often extremely graphic Arab online incitement, including videos and even instructions on how to best stab, slash or disembowel innocent victims. Since the terror wave began that incitement has only worsened.

Perhaps the worst offender in this regard is Facebook, which not faces legal action over its slow, minimal reaction to the reams of anti-Semitic incitement uploaded daily.

Now, the Israeli rights NGO which is leading the legal campaign against Facebook incitement is taking the fight directly to the digital giant's CEO and Founder Mark Zuckerberg.

Shurat HaDin has launched a Headstart fundraising campaign to hang billboards opposite Zuckerberg's multi-million dollar home highlighting and condemning the ongoing incitement on Facebook.

"If he doesn’t see the incitement, we will display it opposite his California home," the group said in a statement.

"The phenomenon of incitement on Facebook has become one of the characteristics of the current wave of terror in Israel," the statement continued. "Facebook pages which show how most effectively to kill Jews, include detailed instruction and encouragement for the killers on social media networks.

"On Facebook, you can find guidelines for the murderer: For example, to spray the knife with K300 (poison) prior to stabbing the Jew, or instructions as to where on the body to stab so that the murder will be most effective; and also encouragement for the murderers and their transformation into cultural heroes."

Shurat HaDin has long led the battle against the incitement on Facebook already for a long time, having recently filed a lawsuit on behalf of 20,000 Israelis against Facebook over its continued inaction against incitement.

Despite this, Shurat HaDin says, tens of thousands of complaints to Facebook requesting that posts inciting murder and terror attacks against Jews have received the following laconic response from Facebook: “Thank you for taking the time to report about something that may, in your opinion, violate our community standards. . . We have checked the group that you reported as containing inflammatory remarks or symbols of hatred and found that it does not violate our community standards.”

"From now until the lawsuit in the United States begins, we at Shurat HaDin are launching a new initiative: If Facebook does not see the incitement – we will bring it all the way to the home of Mark Zuckerberg, so that he cannot ignore it," the group declared.

The $30,000 ad campaign will be provocatively entitled: “Zuckerberg don’t kill us,” and Shurat HaDin has already contacted an advertising firm in the U.S. to hang the billboards in California, in the area around Zuckerberg’s home near Palo Alto.

"The incitement on Facebook is becoming a weapon in the hands of terror, and we cannot accept this," said Shurat HaDin director, Nitsana Darshan-Leitner. "Even after the murder of close to 30 Israelis since October, driven by wild incitement on social networks, Facebook continues to turn a blind eye.

"If Facebook’s founder does not see the incitement – we will place it opposite his California home. This is part of the struggle we are leading which is also supported by the lawsuit against Facebook which we are currently administering."

Ari Soffer


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