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Zachor Legal Institute Advocates for Social Media Companies to Rid their Platforms of Antisemitism

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As antisemitic acts soar in the US, we expect that social media companies will do their part to actively monitor and purge such hate speech of their own volition.”
— Ron Machol, COO of Zachor Legal Institute

RED LEVEL, AL, USA, June 4, 2020 /EINPresswire.com/ -- Zachor Legal Institute (www.zachorlegal.org) has recently sent letters to Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter, updating them about antisemitic postings that are present on their popular social media platforms. These postings violate their own hate speech regulations, and we have asked them to remove this content immediately.

We are using the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) working definition of antisemitism as our guideline for recognizing this form of hate speech directed at Jews.

Countries throughout the world are adopting the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism, which includes both the age-old hatred targeting Jews as well as the more modern venom aimed at Israel as a proxy for Jews.

The inclusion of the newer form of anti-Semitism targeting Israel is critical for the following reasons:

• On university campuses where anti-Semitism is so prevalent, the primary form this takes is discrimination aimed at Israel and Jews who support Israel.
• Anti-Semitism targeting Israel rather than Jews directly is more nefarious, as it is regularly claimed that the attacks are legitimate criticisms of Israel, and often even disguised as Palestinian human rights expressions, when in reality the organized movements targeting Israel openly admit that their goal is to eliminate Israel as a Jewish nation.

What the IHRA definition does is distinguish between legitimate criticisms of Israel that are protected free speech, and expressions that cross the line into unprotected anti-Semitic hate speech. Adoption and implementation of the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism is as legitimate an anti-discrimination measure as the use of similar laws and regulations that prohibit other forms of discrimination, including LGBTQ and gender discrimination.

In the United States, the State Department has adopted the IHRA definition, and the recent Executive Order Combating Anti-Semitism instructs the Department of Education to consider IHRA when evaluating Title VI Civil Rights Act complaints of discrimination against federally funded academic institutions and programs.

What is critically missing is acceptance and enforcement in the online and technology sectors, where anti-Semitism is today most prevalent and spreads quickest. For instance, we referenced in our report The New Anti-Semites an ADL study that “reported 4.2 million antisemitic tweets on Twitter in 2017 alone. This means that over the course of the study, throughout 2017, an average of 81,400 antisemitic tweets were generated per week.”.

In our letters to:

• Facebook - https://zachorlegal.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Zachor-Legal-Institute-Letter-to-Facebook-Regarding-Hate-Content.pdf
• Twitter - https://zachorlegal.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Zachor-Legal-Institute-Letter-to-Twitter-Regarding-Hate-Content.pdf
• YouTube/Google - https://zachorlegal.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/06/Zachor-Legal-Institute-Letter-to-Google-Regarding-Hate-Content.pdf

we identify specific content that violates their own internal hate speech regulations using the IHRA definition of antisemitism. Examples include comparing Israel’s legitimate reactions to Palestinian terror with the Nazi regime, as well as cases calling for Palestine from “(Jordan) River to (Mediterranean) Sea”, a code for the elimination of the State of Israel.

Ron Machol of Zachor Legal Institute said: “People get much of their news and information from social media, so ensuring that discriminatory and hateful antisemitic speech is regulated, much as anti-LGBTQ, anti-Black and Islamophobic hate speech already are, is critical in the fight against hate. As antisemitic acts soar in the US and throughout the world, we expect that social media companies will do their part to remove this dangerous content from their platforms, and take stronger actions in the future to monitor and purge such hate speech of their own volition.”.

Ron Machol
Zachor Legal Institute
+1 925-328-0128
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