On Monday, Facebook announced a campaign to purge what it calls “hate speech” and “xenophobic rhetoric” from the entire continent of Europe. Naturally, COO Sheryl Sandberg didn’t exactly define what constitutes “hate speech” or “xenophobic rhetoric,” but given Facebook’s history with such things, it’s easy to speculate.
Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s COO, wasted no time leaning in and explaining that because hate speech “has no place in our society,” the site will be implementing its “Initiative for Civil Courage Online,” which will slowly but surely purge Europe of all xenophobic rhetoric. Facebook is doing this by allocating $1.09 million to support non-government organizations that are attempting to curb online threats and hate speech.
The platform already has rules that ban harassment and threats, but the Initiative for Civil Courage Online takes this opposition to the next level.
Sandberg, for those who may not remember, was the politically-correct maven who wanted to ban the word “bossy” from the English language.
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Now, it seems she wants to ban all language from the European continent she doesn’t like.
n Germany, especially, hateful speech regarding the influx of refugees has been a problem that officials have spoken out against repeatedly. In November, prosecutors in Hamburg began investigating Facebook for not doing enough to prevent the dissemination of hate speech, according to Reuters. The Initiative comes on the heels of this investigation and a public urging from Chancellor Angela Merkel for the social media company to do more to prevent online harassment.
It seems we have our definition — “hate speech” now means any speech critical of any migrant in Europe. Wonderful. And how, exactly, does Sandberg intend to deal with this? Who knows. Maybe she’ll send the “offenders” to Room 101 for re-training in the nuances of NewSpeak.
Facebook’s ground rules forbid bullying, harassment and threatening language, but critics say it does not enforce them properly.
On Friday, the firm said it had hired a unit of the publisher Bertelsmann to monitor and delete racist posts on its platform in Germany.
But what, exactly, constitutes a “racist” post? And what about rape and threats issued by migrants? No doubt, Sandberg is perfectly okay with that, if Facebook’s history is any indication. As we recently reported, for example, Facebook banned one blogger for defending victims of migrant rape.
Exit question: How long before this tyranny comes to America? And how many will simply bend over and take it?
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