New report card gives Snapchat an “F,” Twitter and Facebook “C minus” for lack of support for targets of hate.
New York, NY, August 1, 2023… Social media platforms are failing to support targets of online hate and harassment, according to a new report by ADL (the Anti-Defamation League).
ADL’s Support for Targets of Online Hate Report Card rates nine tech companies on 11 fundamental features necessary for platforms to protect targets of online hate. Twitch received the highest mark, “B”, for including nine out of the 11 features. Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube received a “C” grade, while Twitter (now X) and Facebook received “C minus.” Discord and Reddit were issued “D,” with Snapchat receiving the lowest grade, “F” for including only two out of the 11 features.
“Again and again, these platforms say they want to protect users from hate and harassment – then neglect to deliver,” said Yael Eisenstat, ADL Vice President and head of the Center for Technology and Society. “Especially as new platforms emerge, we need to make sure that this generation of social media companies provides real options and support for those affected by online hate.”
ADL compiled the list of 11 fundamental platform features necessary to protect users based on recommendations from PEN America, UNESCO and ICFJ, ADL, as well as The World Wide Web Foundation. These features were divided into five categories: 1. Communication with Targets, 2. Support for Targets of Networked Harassment, 3. Blocking, 4. Muting, and 5. Filtering. The social media platforms were subsequently graded by the implementation and effectiveness of these features.
Below is ADL’s report card:
ADL recommends that platforms use the experiences of targets of hate in product development and design, including:
- Implement or update the fundamental platform features.
- Utilize resources and expertise from civil society and academia to improve user experience.
- Increase investments in safety features to prioritize the experience of targets on platforms.
“While social media platforms have a responsibility to prevent the existence of online hate and harassment, they also have a responsibility to protect targets of hate when those efforts fail,” said Jordan Kraemer, Director of Research, ADL Center for Technology and Society. “But they are behind on both accounts. By taking these steps to support targets of hate, platforms can prove they are serious about making improvements overall.”
Rates of online harassment have steadily increased in recent years. ADL’s recent Online Hate and Harassment survey found 52 percent of American adults experienced online hate or harassment – the highest rate since 2020.
ADL is the leading anti-hate organization in the world. Founded in 1913, its timeless mission is “to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all.” Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of antisemitism and bias, using innovation and partnerships to drive impact. A global leader in combating antisemitism, countering extremism and battling bigotry wherever and whenever it happens, ADL works to protect democracy and ensure a just and inclusive society for all.