ADL Teams With Internet Industry Leaders To Convene Cyberhate Working Group

  • May 10, 2012

New York, NY, May 10, 2012 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) will convene a new working group on cyberhate that will bring together Internet industry leaders and others to probe the roots of the problem and develop new solutions to address it head-on.

The Task Force on Internet Hate, created by the Inter-parliamentary Coalition for Combating Anti-Semitism (ICCA), formally approved a motion May 7 establishing the "Anti-Cyberhate Working Group," during their meeting under the auspices of the Stanford Center for Internet and Society in Palo Alto, California. 

"We are honored to have been appointed by the ICCA to convene this important working group," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "Internet hate continues to have a global impact on civil society and a transparent process to respond to it will lead to reviewability and consistency.  We welcome the commitments of Google and Facebook to participate in this dialogue to combat online hate speech, Holocaust denial and anti-Semitism. Working alongside the Internet's leaders will allow for the development of industry standards that balance effectiveness with respect for the right to free speech."

The ICCA resolution was prompted by a desire of industry leaders, including Google and Facebook, to maintain a continuing dialogue with nongovernment organizations on best practices on combating Internet hate and to promote transparency on how online hate is addressed.

The "Anti-Cyberhate Working Group" will be comprised of industry, academics, NGOs and others to "build best practices for understanding, reporting upon and responding to Internet hate."  The resolution calls on ADL to convene and move the working group forward.  The first meetings are slated to take place later this year.

Christopher Wolf, attorney and leading expert on Internet hate who serves as Co-Chair of the ICCA Task Force on Internet Hate and Chair of the ADL Task Force on Internet Hate, stated:  "This represents an unprecedented opportunity to have the industry's leaders come together with non-governmental organizations, academics and other interested parties to develop a collaborative approach to Internet hate.  The Internet has been infected with the virus of hate since its inception, and the Task Force is proving to be one of the most effective mechanisms for developing voluntary efforts to disable the virus."

The ICCA Task Force on Internet Hate includes members of parliaments from around the world, Internet experts, scholars and representatives of Internet companies, including Facebook and Google.