Blog
Can Taking Down Websites Really Stop Terrorists and Hate Groups?
November 29, 2017
By Thomas Holt, Joshua D. Freilich and Steven Chermak In the wake of an explosion in London on September 15, President Trump called for cutting off extremists’ access to the Internet. Loser terrorists must be dealt with in a much tougher manner.The internet is their main recruitment tool which we must cut off & use better! — Donald J. ...
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Vital Human Rights Evidence in Syria is Disappearing from YouTube
November 22, 2017
By Dia Kayyali and Raja Althaibani So much of Syria’s history has been purposefully erased by ISIS in recent years. And now, we’re seeing another erasure of history– this time on YouTube. Thousands of videos showing human rights abuses in Syria, as well as the channels that feature these videos, are being removed by YouTube. ...
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New digital methods can be used to analyse linguistic terms and better understand Reddit communities
November 15, 2017
By Tim Squirrell Reddit is now the fourth most visited website in the US. Yet, surprisingly, given its position as an extremely large community, it has been the subject of relatively little research. Tim Squirrell has developed methods of studying the genealogy, spread, and use of particular words on Reddit, as demonstrated by this case ...
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Self-regulation of Internet Intermediaries: Public Duty Versus Private Responsibility
November 8, 2017
By Paul Bernal Internet intermediaries – the social media companies, search engines and internet service providers who supply ways for audiences to find and access online content – are under scrutiny regarding their crucial role in the flow of digital information. Google and Facebook attracted one fifth of global advertising spend in 2016, and concerns ...
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We Should Pay More Attention to the Role of Gender in Islamist Radicalization
November 1, 2017
By Elizabeth Pearson and David Sutcliffe One of the key current UK security issues is how to deal with British citizens returning from participation in ISIS in Syria and Iraq. Most of the hundreds fighting with ISIS were men and youths. But, dozens of British women and girls also travelled to join Islamic State in Syria ...
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The Sound of an Echo
October 25, 2017
By Joe Whittaker In the aftermath of a terrorist attack, a series of events can ostensibly be relied on. As we mourn, the media frantically try to gather information about the attacker(s) and, upon learning that they used social media for some part of their activity, it is suggested by journalists, politicians, and pundits that ...
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The UK Extreme Right on Twitter: Restricting Access to Extremist Content Online
October 18, 2017
By Lorand Bodo In recent years, governments and companies have had to respond to the phenomenon of terrorists and other violent extremists using the Internet, especially social media platforms, to propagate their messages and as a tool for radicalisation. For example, the UK government recently proposed to tighten the law concerning the viewing of violent ...
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Industry Efforts to Censor Pro-Terrorism Online Content Pose Risks to Free Speech
October 11, 2017
By Sophia Cope, Jillian C. York, and Jeremy Gillula In recent months, social media platforms—under pressure from a number of governments—have adopted new policies and practices to remove content that promotes terrorism. As the Guardian reported, these policies are typically carried out by low-paid contractors (or, in the case of YouTube, volunteers) and with little to ...
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Wilayat Internet: Islamic State’s Resilience Across the Internet and Social Media
October 4, 2017
By Laurence Bindner, Raphael Gluck This article was originally published in French on Ultima Ratio. Since partly going underground in the deep-web, ISIS exerts continuous pressure to make its propaganda surface on the public web. Adapting constantly to ever more active censorship, ISIS uses the various web platforms in an opportunistic and agile way. Therefore, ...
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Some Reflections on Locating Online Viewers of Jihadist Content in Policy Exchange’s ‘The New Netwar’
September 27, 2017
By Lorand Bodo The UK think-tank Policy Exchange recently published a new report on the struggle against online jihadist extremism, or what its authors call “the New Netwar”. The report argues that we are currently struggling to find appropriate ways to combat online jihadist extremism and therefore losing the war online against the so-called ‘Islamic State’ (ISIS). ...