Birchgrove Legal are proud to announce that we have been working hand in hand with both the Australian Muslim Advocacy Network and Facebook to combat Islamophobic hate speech on its platform.

In the early stages of 2020, Birchgrove Legal partnered with the Australian Muslim Advocacy Network to investigate the prevalence of hate speech on the online social media platform Facebook. The results demonstrated a lack of adequate moderation of hate speech content that clearly broke Facebook’s community guidelines, and despite being reported, were not taken down. Majority of the content originated on several alt-right hate group pages, with one comment calling Muslims “parasites” and calling for them to be “culled” receiving no response from Facebook.

However, since the initial investigation Facebook have initiated contact with both Birchgrove Legal and AMAN with an aim of making it’s platform a safer and more well-rounded place to be. They have shown a willingness to cooperate and discuss the issues raised by the initial investigation and remain committed to finding a solution to such a sensitive but prevalent issue.

We welcomed their announcement that they are to investigate claims that their algorithms are discriminatory against minority groups and celebrate our ongoing discussions. Talks between the three parties remain ongoing with promising discussions involving Facebook’s Public Policy Manager, Director of Policy and Chief Adviser and Lawyer at the Australian Muslim Advocacy Network.

Since discussions have begun, Facebook has accepted almost all short term changes to their community standards and discussions have continued regarding the most adequate and profound long term solution, so as to avoid a “band-aid” fix to a larger issue.

Birchgrove Legal remains committed to responding to community needs, and tackling prevalent social issues.

Our work on this case in the News:

1 – The Guardian (Click Here)
2 – ABC (Click Here)
3 – SBS (Click Here)

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