Avid Editor's Insights

Facebook, Negligence or Complicity?

Posted by avideditor on January 5, 2010

Guest post by Subtlety

Anti-Semitic content seems in no short supply these days, and it seems that the social networking site Facebook is no exception.  Facebook states in its terms of service section 3. sub section 6 “You will not bully, intimidate, or harass any user ” and sub section 7 that “You will not post content that is hateful, threatening, pornographic, or that contains nudity or graphic or gratuitous violence.” Yet evidence would suggest that the right kind of hate can avoid Facebook scrutiny.  Comments about killing Jews, wishing death to Jews, and general derogatory statements ( see http://networkedblogs.com/p23173064 or http://www.thejidf.org/2009/12/death-to-jews-and-facebook-does-nothing.html for screen shot examples) go unaddressed despite their de facto violations of networks terms of service.   Such examples in and of themselves could possibly suggest mere negligence if not for the conduct of social networking site in defending multiple holocaust- denier pages.   As explained in a post at JCPA.org ( http://www.jcpa.org/JCPA/Templates/ShowPage.asp?DRIT=3&DBID=1&LNGID=1&TMID=111&FID=624&PID=0&IID=3075&TTL=Facebook)  Facebook in a defense of its conduct stated it does not does not take down groups that speak out against countries political entities or ideas.” Whether the holocaust is a country, a political entity or an idea seems at best incredibly puzzling, and at worst ridiculously offensive.

There are several instances of Jewish Activists relieving warnings or other notifications from Facebook, some of which are not content related.   In light of the hateful material allowed to remain on Facebook, such selective enforcement seems both petty and biased.   In light of the many examples readily documented by other sites, and appearing on Facebook, it appears Facebook Terms of service may be applicable by ideology, rather than conduct.

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