Social Media and Hate Speech
In recent years, there has been a veritable flood of hate speech on social media platforms in India. The Hindutva “online ecosystem” daily produces content targeting Muslims, Dalits, and other marginalized groups. ICWI is working with Indian activists to combat the spread of hate-speech. This is a global issue and we seek to connect with international efforts to address the problem.
We firmly believe that big technology companies like Facebook bear a brunt of the responsibility for the proliferation of hate speech in India. While in the US context they have been proactive in addressing hate speech, they show no such concern in India—revealing a clear double standard. More perniciously, Facebook seems to be cozying up with the BJP, allowing its affiliate groups such as the Bajrang Dal to operate online unchecked. Clearly, the company puts profit over ethics.
ICWI’s main agenda is to thus pressurize Facebook and other social media companies to be more proactive in dealing with hate speech in India.
What is ICWI’s Social Media and Hate Speech campaign?
At present, our focus is documenting hate speech on Indian social media platforms. We wish to develop a large body of evidence exposing the inadequacy of Facebook and other tech companies’ content moderation practices in the country. We hope to follow a “crowdsourcing” model, collaborating with individual stakeholders to gather this evidence. More information about this public campaign will be shared here soon. For now, if you want to share some information on various problematic aspects of Facebook’s and other tech companies’ conduct in India, write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org