Jewish groups join campaign to battle online hatred

Jewish groups join campaign to battle online hatred

The initiative has gained the support of key community groups who fight against anti-Semitism

Jack Mendel is the Online Editor at the Jewish News.

Key community bodies have joined a campaign to tackle online hatred, including anti-Semitism.

‘Reclaim the Internet’ is an initiative to fight against abuse on the web, launched by Labour MP Yvette Cooper during a conference on Monday.

It has gained the backing of the Community Security Trust, after 159 cases of anti-Semitic incidents on social media were reported to the them in the last year.

Speaking to Jewish News, CST said they were “very happy to lend our expertise at its opening panel event.”

The social media organisations are moving in the right direction, but overall the responses remain inconsistent and inadequate, especially regarding mass campaigns against individuals. CST reminds anyone encountering anti-Semitism online, to please report it.”

The initiative has also been backed by the Holocaust Educational Trust. Karen Pollock, Chief Executive, said it is “proud to support #reclaimtheinternet.”

All too often, social media is used to spread all forms of hate, including antisemitism – as we are all too familiar with. The internet can be a huge force for good, bringing people together across the world, and it is our duty to speak out and stamp out the type of vindictive behaviour that fosters intolerance in society.  ”

Campaign Against Antisemitism commented: “It’s vital that Jewish people feel safe from anti-Semitism online. Victimising and bullying Jewish people either offline or on the Internet has a deeply negative effect on both the individual targeted and the wider community. Zero tolerance of anti-Semitism needs to be more than just a slogan, and must apply across the board in the form of action taken against abusers.

Anti-Semitic hatred is rampant on the Internet and though the police response leaves much to be desired, it is the Director of Public Prosecutions who is ultimately not taking the necessary action to stop it. Our teams are working hard to invert this problematic status quo.”
Jewish Labour MP Luciana Berger was among high profile figures supporting the new campaign. The Liverpool Wavertree MP has been regularly targeted with anti-Semitic abuse.
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