Young people gather to discuss solutions to hate speech online

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Young people gather to discuss solutions to hate speech online

Israelis, Palestinians and other nationalities were represented at the interfaith workshop event held this week

Social media apps
Hate speech is a problem for many social media companies

Social media companies must do more to address rising levels of hate speech in society, an interfaith conference including participants from countries including Israel and Palestine has agreed.

They took part in a workshop designed to offer training on different forms of hate, the impact it has on individuals as well as communities, and how they can identify and combat it.

Young people from Australia, Israel, Germany, Turkey, the United States, Nigeria, Palestine, France, and Switzerland were among those taking part.

Andre Oboler, chief executive of the Online Hate Prevention Institute, said solutions using data and artificial intelligence did exist for social media companies, in addition to the use of content moderators.

He told the workshop: “The danger is not so much that people might read content inspired by hate speech, but rather that they may be induced to accept it as a valid point of view, a fact of life, or something with which one may or may not agree, but not something whose dissemination one should oppose.”

The virtual event was organised jointly by the three peace groups: the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation in Israel, as well as the Interfaith Alliance for Safer Communities and Yala Young Leaders.

Hajar, a Yala Young Leaders alumni from Morocco who took part, said: “Today, social media has exposed the ugly face of our world; we’re witnessing terrifying rates of hate crime all over the globe.

“It’s very important to understand what hate crime is for us to be able to recognise it and then fight it and that’s exactly what the workshop provided us.”

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