Racism and Incitement Index: 7amleh Documents 10 Million Instances of Violent Content in Hebrew Throughout the Year 2023


Racism and Incitement Index: 7amleh Documents 10 Million Instances of Violent Content in Hebrew Throughout the Year 2023

February 26, 7amleh - the Arab Center for the Advancement of Social Media, has released a new comprehensive report, “Racism and Incitement Index 2023”, that sheds light on the proliferation of hate speech and incitement to violence directed at Palestinian people and advocates for Palestinian rights on online platforms. The report provides crucial insights into the gravity of the digital rights situation and offers actionable recommendations to combat this concerning trend.

Throughout the past year, 7amleh's documentation efforts have uncovered a disturbing surge in hate speech and incitement targeting Palestinians across various online platforms. The findings from the first half of 2023 revealed extensive Hebrew content dissemination on social media platforms, where inciting violence against Palestinians was widespread. Tragically, this online incitement translated into real-world harm, as evidenced by a violent attack on the village of Huwara and its residents on February 26. The latter part of 2023 saw an unprecedented increase in hate speech and violent content in Hebrew, further perpetuating violence, justifying collective punishment, and exacerbating the dehumanization of the Palestinian people, especially after the war on Gaza following October 7. It was revealed through the efforts of 7amleh that an average of 23 violent or hateful content were published against Palestinians every minute in the period after October 7. Many of the writers of this harmful content expressed positive feelings about the violent content they shared, without expressions of guilt, shame, exhaustion, or sadness.

To address this issue, 7amleh launched the "Violence Indicator" in October - an AI-based language model that monitors hate speech and violence in Hebrew against Palestinians in real-time, and presents the results on 7or - the Palestinian Observatory for Digital Rights Violations. Remarkably, the AI language model has detected over 10 million instances of violent content in Hebrew across three major social media platforms. Notably, three-quarters of this troubling content was found on X (formerly Twitter) throughout 2023.

The report draws attention to the alarming increase in digital rights violations on online platforms, with data provided by 7or - the Palestinian Observatory for Digital Rights Violations, revealing a staggering 4400 digital rights violations throughout 2023. Among those documented violations are a total of 2749 cases of violent and hateful content in Hebrew.

In response to these findings, 7amleh's report presents key recommendations for social media companies to combat hate speech and incitement effectively. These recommendations include developing effective Hebrew language classifiers, strengthening platforms' trust and safety teams, and human rights and policy teams, increasing native-speaking content reviewers, and committing to ongoing co-design with civil society to enhance policies and processes related to harmful and illegal content online.

7amleh underscores the urgent need for action to address the alarming levels of online hate speech and incitement against Palestinians. By implementing the recommendations outlined in the report, online platforms can play a crucial role in safeguarding human rights, promoting accountability, and preventing the dissemination of harmful content around the world.

For the complete report, you can access it here.


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