Twitter, Facebook and other platforms fail to remove 9 out of 10 anti-Muslim posts: report

Twitter, Facebook and other platforms fail to remove 9 out of 10 anti-Muslim posts: report
The Centre for Countering Digital Hate found that social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube failed to remove almost 90 percent of reported posts containing anti-Muslim hate speech
2 min read
29 April, 2022
Major social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have failed to remove Islamophobic content inducing hate speech, conspiracy theories and racist images [Getty]

Social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have failed to remove 90 percent of Islamophobic content on their platforms, according to a report published on Thursday.

The Centre for Countering Digital Hate reported a total of 530 posts between February and March this year.

They were found to contain examples of dehumanising content, such as racist caricatures, conspiracy theories and false claims. The posts had been viewed at least 25 million times.

Such posts included images likening Islam to "cancer", conspiracy theories promoting narratives that Muslims are "taking over Europe", as well as depictions of Muslims as pigs, and other inhuman caricatures.

Several posts that social networking sites failed to act on were shared by Hindu nationalists propagating hate narratives against Indian Muslims, who are currently faced with a surge in Islamophobic violence.

Islamophobic content on apps such as Tiktok, Instagram and Twitter was easily detectable, with the sites allowing for hashtags such as #deathtoIslam, #raghead and #Islamiscancer to easily spread.

Content spread using the hashtags received at least 1.3 million impressions.

The report also found that social media platforms failed to remove 14 out 20 posts glorifying the 2019 Christchurch mosque massacre, including footage of the attack itself.

The attack, which was carried out by Australian white supremacist Brenton Tarrant, killed 51 people.

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The CCDH also stated that Islamophobic Facebook groups, with names such as "Proud Aussies Against Halal Meat" and "Stop the Islamization of America" were found to have thousands of followers.

The Facebook groups, which are yet to be removed despite being reported, are predominantly based in the US, Australia and the UK.

The report concluded that YouTube and Twitter were the worst platforms for removing Islamophobic content, with the video sharing platform failing to delete any of its videos, and the micro-blogging site failing to take action on 97 percent of anti-Muslim hatred reported to them.

Facebook and Instagram, which are both owned by Mark Zuckerberg, failed to remove or restrict Islamophobic content on 94 and 89 percent of reported posts. 

Meanwhile Tiktok, despite being the best performing platform, failed to remove 64 percent of reported Islamophobic videos.