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Sunday, September 27, 2015

Free speech? - Merkel presses Zuckerberg to monitor racist posts on Facebook.

Free speech? - Merkel presses Zuckerberg to monitor racist posts on Facebook. (RT).

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she wants more action from Facebook when it comes to filtering hateful racial posts. The comments were overheard by media as Merkel was speaking to CEO Mark Zuckerberg on the sidelines of the UN summit.

Merkel’s request could be heard on a live transmission broadcast seconds before the introductory remarks at a luncheon in New York on Saturday.

The German leader asked Zuckerberg about hate speech posts, with the Facebook CEO responding: “We need to do some work.”

Merkel followed up: “Are you working on this?” Zuckerberg was heard replying: “Yeah.”

The transmission was then cut off as the luncheon began.

This is not the first time Merkel has called on Facebook to curtail hate speech comments on the social network.

When people stir up sedition on social networks using their real name, it’s not only the state that has to act, but also Facebook as a company should do something against these [people],” Merkel told regional newspaper Rheinische Post earlier in September.

The German leader added that the social media company has the tools to track hate speech, but is lacking in enforcement. “The rules need to be implemented,” Merkel said.

The increased attention towards online hate is believed to have been triggered by an influx of refugees traveling to Germany, with around 1 million migrants expected to come to the country this year. The rise in immigrants and refugees from war zones has divided the population, with massive pro- and anti-refugee rallies hitting the country amid intensifying hate rhetoric.

Following criticism, Facebook committed to improve its efforts to fight racism online. On September 14, the company announced its cooperation with German Internet watchdog, Voluntary Self-Monitoring of Multimedia Service Providers, to keep an eye on hate speech posts. Hmmmm......I warned that the flood of refugees would bring a massive increase of extreme right, just wait till the next elections in Europe, and limiting free speech won't stop it on the contrary. I don't approve of hate speech but free speech is a must in a democracy.

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