• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Facebook to meet gov on Internet hate-mongering

AFP/DPA/The Local · 27 Aug 2015, 15:29

Published: 27 Aug 2015 09:38 GMT+02:00
Updated: 27 Aug 2015 15:29 GMT+02:00

In a letter to Facebook's European subsidiaries, Justice Minister Heiko Maas suggested a meeting with company executives on September 14 to talk about "improving the effectiveness and transparency of your community standards".

Facebook's German unit agreed to meet Maas, saying in an email sent to AFP it "takes his concerns very seriously".

"We are very interested in an exchange of views with Minister Maas about what society, companies and politicians can do together against xenophobia spreading in Germany," the email said.

The Internet giant "works hard every day to protect people on Facebook against abuse, hate speech and bullying", the company spokesman said.

In his letter to Facebook Maas wrote that in connection with the xenophobic attacks on refugees and refugee centres the Justice Ministry has received numerous complaints from concerned citizens over racist pronouncements on the internet.

DON'T MISS: TV anchor urges public to fight online racism

"Facebook users especially complain that your company has not taken effective action despite concrete indications of xenophobic and racist 'posts,'" read Maas' letter.

When post of this nature are reported users often only receive a reply saying that the post was checked but that it did not contravene the site's community standards guidelines, the letter went on.

But detailed explanation, that would indicate a thorough check of the post's content "is, according to the information I have, not given in these particular cases," Mass wrote.

Facebook is obligated by law to delete content which is anti-constitutional such as posts of a racist nature, Maas reminded the company.

As Germany faces a record influx of refugees and a backlash from the far right, social media like Facebook have seen an upsurge of hateful, xenophobic commentary.

Recently internet users in Berlin and Bavaria have been handed fines for posting hate speech online, and a public TV anchor made an impassioned plea for the public to argue against racist social media comments.

Story continues below…

Satirical newspaper Der Postillion mocked Facebook's moderation policies this week with an article titled "We would delete hateful comments, but there are almost never nipples in them".

For more news from Germany, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

AFP/DPA/The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Today's headlines
'Lone' Munich shooter kills nine, commits suicide
Photo: DPA

A teenage German-Iranian gunman who killed nine people in a shooting spree at a busy Munich shopping centre and then committed suicide had likely acted alone, German police said Saturday.

As it happened
Nine dead in shooting rampage in Munich
File photo: DPA

Nine people are dead after "at least one person" went on a shooting spree in a Munich shopping centre on Friday evening. An attacker is believed to be among the dead.

German Turkish community split by unrest after coup plot
Pro-Erdogan protesters in Berlin. Photo: DPA

Hatred between supporters of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and those opposed to him has exploded on social media in Germany in the wake of a failed coup attempt last Friday.

Germany stresses defence of Baltics after Trump comments
Photo: DPA

Germany on Friday stressed its promise to protect its NATO allies after White House hopeful Donald Trump called the commitment into question.

Three quarters of Germans fear terror attack 'soon'
Police guard a football stadium. Photo: DPA

The figure has shot up from 69 percent just two weeks ago.

Starving stork is unexpected customer at pharmacy
Photo: DPA

Was it on a mission to deliver the morning-after pill instead of babies?

Anti-drugs campaign is Scientology in disguise: spies
The Church of Scientology's German headquarters in Berlin. Photo: DPA

The controversial church is considered an "anti-constitutional sect" in Germany.

Free peeing on Autobahn must be legal right: Left Party
Photo: DPA

The Left Party, Germany’s official opposition, has discovered the key to winning votes in next year’s federal election - making motorway toilets free for all.

Crime writer in court for failed robbery - just like in his book
File photo: DPA

Was it research for a novel gone wrong?

German trains need better protection from attacks: police
Photo: DPA

Trains are a soft spot in the German security system which terrorists are likely to target unless necessary steps are taken, federal investigators warn.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Analysis & Opinion
Nice was an attack on France, not on Germany
Sponsored Article
Avoid hidden fees when sending money overseas
National
Bavaria train attack: Were police right to shoot to kill?
National
How to get German citizenship (or just stay forever)
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Technology
Brexit will turn Berlin into 'Europe’s startup capital'
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
Travel
Six soothing day trips to escape the bustle of Berlin
International
'Germany needs to make UK come to its senses'
Features
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
Travel
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Features
How two gay dads cut through German red tape to start a family
National
Five things to know about guns in Germany
Sponsored Article
Health insurance for expats in Germany: a quick guide
Culture
10 things you need to know before attending a German wedding
Sponsored Article
Avoid hidden fees when sending money overseas
National
Eight weird habits you'll pick up living in Germany
Lifestyle
Six reasons 'super-cool' Berlin isn't all it's cracked up to be
Society
Only one country likes getting naked on the beach more than Germany
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Lifestyle
23 ridiculously fascinating things you never knew about Berlin
Culture
8 German words that perfectly sum up your 20s
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Lifestyle
Can't make it past the door at Berlin's most famous club? Help is at hand
Business & Money
Why Frankfurt could steal London's crown as Europe's finance capital
Features
6 surprising things I learned about Germany while editing The Local
Culture
Five sure-fire ways to impress Germans with your manners
10,799
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd