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15 Aug 2019

Natalie Martinez, Media Matters for America

For five years, Facebook has let a white supremacist dog whistle thrive

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Since 2014, right-wing Facebook pages have used the word “invasion” to push hateful rhetoric targeting Muslim and Latinx immigrants... Anti-immigrant "invasion" narratives gained traction on right-wing Facebook pages in 2014 when Barack Obama was President... Anti-immigrant “invasion” posts in 2014 followed a template: fearmonger about Latin American immigrants coming to the U.S. and blame Obama for it... On Facebook, anti-immigrant attacks spread alongside anti-Muslim conspiracy theories inspired by white supremacist ideology... Over the past year, right-wing pages have implemented this white supremacist dog whistle in reaction to two major news cycles: the Trump administration’s family separation policies from May to July 2018 and the caravans of Central American migrants and asylum-seekers heading toward the southern U.S. border in October and November... Facebook’s current hate speech guidelines in its community standards extend “some protections for immigration status.”... Even though the company has policies that seem to prohibit most if not all “invasion” content, Facebook still allows it to exist and spread on its platform. In March, Facebook claimed it did not consider a post pushing white supremacist claims about a “Muslim Invasion” in the U.K. to be a violation of its community standards. A year after leaked documents revealed that Facebook allowed praise for white nationalism and separatism on its platform after the August 2017 “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, VA, the company implemented a so-called white nationalist ban.

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USA: Civil rights groups call on Facebook to stop use of its platform to spread hate & violence & to ensure greater accountability of leadership

Facebook bans content related to white nationalism & separatism after pressure from civil rights groups