A Guardian reader points the finger at social media, while others say rightwing newspapers should be held to account for their scapegoating of Muslims
Your editorial is right (Terrorism will not divide us, 19 June). There has been far greater attention paid to the use of social media by Islamic terrorist groups than there has been by that of the far right. But it only takes two clicks on Facebook to gain an insight into the connections between, say, Britain First or the English Defence League, and a plethora of equally nasty groups across the world. Randomly clicking on their followers to find out more about them is revealing and worrying. Worse, this stuff is easily accessible by children, and impressionable adults. Mrs May talks about clamping down on social media, but this is an international problem so it requires an international solution. A body analogous to the World Health Organization is required to monitor internet traffic and sanction the social media corporations that fail to block this form of communication. By taking the job away from governments, there is also less chance of politically motivated censorship. As with the WHO, it would not be possible to kill off all infection, but the pooling of resources could make a great difference. In the meantime, if each of us spends a couple of minutes every day on the easy task of finding and reporting these bilious postings, with luck Facebook and others will be so overwhelmed in having to respond that they’ll be forced to tighten up on what gets through. Needless to say, Trump and Brexit have emboldened the haters.
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• Printed hate speech has effortlessly drowned out free speech by others. Nesrine Malik writes about hate extremists operating “in a climate that has incited and normalised their hatred” (Opinion, 20 June), highlighting Katie Hopkins in the Daily Mail. A year ago the MP Jo Cox was shot dead on the street by a rightwing extremist. The main organ of hate speech in Britain, as everyone knows, is the rightwing extremist Daily Mail, also the main author of Brexit. So why on earth is it not being held to account? If any actual person stood on the street shouting the sort of bile that paper produces daily, they could be prosecuted for hate speech. Surely it is time to launch a group action by victims, on behalf of all of us, against the Daily Mail for hate speech and general incitement to violence. They have promoted random social violence and hatred just as surely as if they had pulled the trigger. It is time their owners and editors felt the force of the law.