Tags: meta | hate speech | policy | zionist | antisemitism | jewish | israelis

Meta to Ban Content Using 'Zionist' as Antisemitic Trope

By    |   Tuesday, 09 July 2024 10:07 PM EDT

Meta, the parent company for Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Threads, said Tuesday it will begin to remove content that targets "Zionists," where the term is used to refer to Jews and Israelis rather than representing supporters of the political movement.

The social media giant's new policy, The Hill reported, expands which posts targeting "Zionists" will be removed based on how the term is treated, compared to its previous hate speech policy that more narrowly banned the word when it was used as a stand-in term for Jews or Israelis.

"The word 'Zionist' has layers of meaning based on its origins and usage today, and may also be highly dependent on context," the company wrote in a blog post titled, "Update from the Policy Forum on our approach to 'Zionist' as a proxy for hate speech." "This term often refers to supporters of a political movement, which is not itself a protected characteristic under our policies, but in some cases may be used as a proxy to refer to Jewish or Israeli people, which are protected characteristics under our Hate Speech policy.

"We recognize there is nothing approaching a global consensus on what people mean when they use the term 'Zionist.' However, based on our research, engagement, and on-platform investigation into its use as a proxy term for Jewish people and Israelis in relation to certain types of hateful attacks, we will now remove content that targets 'Zionists' with dehumanizing comparisons, calls for harm, or denials of existence on the basis that 'Zionist' in those instances often appears to be a proxy for Jewish or Israeli people."

The company said before the policy change, it narrowly banned the word where Zionists were compared to rats, reflecting known antisemitic imagery, and where context makes clear that "Zionist" means "Jew" or "Israeli." For example, "Today, the Jews celebrate Passover. I hate those Zionists."

"This approach will remain in place," the company wrote. "However, we have determined that the existing policy guidance does not sufficiently address the ways people are using the term 'Zionist' online and offline."

Michael Katz

Michael Katz is a Newsmax reporter with more than 30 years of experience reporting and editing on news, culture, and politics.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


StreetTalk
Meta, the parent company for Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and Threads, said Tuesday it will begin to remove content that targets "Zionists," where the term is used to refer to Jews and Israelis rather than representing supporters of the political movement.
meta, hate speech, policy, zionist, antisemitism, jewish, israelis
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2024-07-09
Tuesday, 09 July 2024 10:07 PM
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