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UK Lawmakers Say Facebook, Twitter ‘Consciously Failing’ to Fight Terrorism

Social networks such as Facebook and Twitter are “consciously failing” in their efforts to combat online extremism, according to British lawmakers.

The UK Commons Home Affairs select committee argued in a report that Facebook and Twitter have become the “vehicle of choice in spreading propaganda and the recruiting platforms for terrorism.”

Keith Vaz, the chairman of the committee, said, “Huge corporations like Google, Facebook and Twitter, are consciously failing to tackle this threat and passing the buck by hiding behind their supranational legal status, despite knowing that their sites are being used by the instigators of terror.”

Twitter announced last week that it had closed down 235,000 ISIS affiliated accounts, however MP’s described Twitter’s efforts as merely a “drop in the ocean.”

It recently emerged that during the trial of Islamic State recruiter Anjem Choudary, who was convicted of being a supporter of IS, police had asked both Facebook and Twitter to remove accounts linked to the hate preacher, but both companies failed to do so.

Both Facebook and Twitter have long been prioritising policing people sharing their political agenda, such as criticism of Black Lives Matter, over tackling terrorist related activity.

This prioritisation is exemplified of the site’s permanent banning of figures such as Azelia Banks and Milo Yiannopoulos on the grounds of “harassment.”

The select committee called on social networks to develop a “zero tolerance approach to online extremism.” Facebook and Twitter are yet to respond to the criticism.

You can follow Ben Kew on Facebook, on Twitter at @ben_kew, or email him at ben@yiannopoulos.net

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