Twitter now prohibits hate speech which targets religious groups by using dehumanising speech, a ban it says may extend to other categories like race and gender.
The social network already bars hateful language directed at individual religious adherents. Additionally, it prohibits hate speech on the basis of a person’s race, gender and other categories. Tuesday’s change broadens the hatred speech rule to prohibit likening entire religious groups to subhumans or vermin, without targeting a specific individual.
Twitter, together with YouTube and Facebook, has been under fire because of its incidence of harassment and hate on its services. Twitter’s latest upgrade came after users composed in thousands of responses when the company asked for hints about how best to enlarge its hate speech policies.
“Twitter’s failure to prohibit all forms of dehumanisation instantly casts doubt on the company’s commitment to fully stopping despise on the stage,” said Rashad Robinson, the president of online racial justice group Color of Change, in a announcement . “It’s no secret that Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and other Silicon Valley leaders have been unwilling to stamp out misinformation and discrimination for fear of a conservative backlash.”
Facebook has a comparable policy banning dehumanising address,”statements of inferiority” and attacks against people or groups who share protected characteristics such as race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, caste or religious affiliation.
YouTube’s policy also bans material that promotes”violence or hatred” against groups or individuals based on groups such as age, disability, race, and immigration status amongst others.