Sunday, January 29, 2017

  • Sunday, January 29, 2017
  • Elder of Ziyon
Adi Amsterdam, an Israeli activist, set up an event for Holocaust Remembrance Day on Facebook asking people to report antisemitic Holocaust-denial Facebook pages.

After first claiming that the pages didn't violate community standards, it looked like the campaign was a success. Facebook said that after reviewing the posts, they removed some 25 offensive, Holocaust-denying pages.



Facebook is lying.

When you go to these pages in Israel, you indeed get a message that the offensive posts have been removed:



But when you go to these sites outside Israel with the same link, the hate is still there:




Facebook is treating Holocaust denial as something that only some Jews are sensitive to, and not something that is objectively offensive.

The message that Facebook is giving is that the worst kinds of Jew hatred are fine, and some Jews are oversensitive to it so they should be shielded from being offended. They absolutely do not agree that these pages are incitement against Jews.

Holocaust denial isn't freedom of expression - it is hate speech, and as these example show, is associated with pure antisemitism.

Facebook's lies to its Israeli readers, claiming that they removed these posts, is extraordinarily offensive.

By not taking antisemitic hate speech seriously - indeed, by acting condescendingly towards those that report it - Facebook is making a statement that they support such speech.

This is outrageous and Facebook needs to answer why they lie to their Israeli members and why they treat Holocaust denial and antisemitism as acceptable speech when they claim to be against hate speech.

UPDATE: This was noted last year by Brian at Israellycool, and the reason given by the Online Hate Prevention Institute is that Facebook will only remove content that is illegal in the host countries, not merely for being "offensive." If it isn't illegal in the US  - and the Arab world - it will remain visible there. Which shows that Facebook isn't trying to do the moral thing; just the minimum to avoid legal issues.



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