Small Wars Journal

Facebook, YouTube and Twitter Amplified Video of Christchurch Mosque Shooting

Facebook, YouTube and Twitter Amplified Video of Christchurch Mosque Shooting by Hamza Shaban, Craig Timberg, Drew Harwell and Andrew Ba Tran – Washington Post

Friday’s slaughter in two New Zealand mosques, like mass shootings before it, had its seeds on one of the darkest corners of the Internet, a chat room where anonymous people appeared to talk openly about the attack before, during and after it happened. But technology played a more visible -- and arguably more troubling -- role in publicizing the violence itself and, by extension, the hate-filled ideology behind it.


And yet again, the biggest players in America’s rich, massive and sophisticated technology industry -- YouTube, Twitter and Facebook -- failed to rapidly quell this spread as it metastasized across platforms, bringing horrific images to internet users in a worldwide, dystopian video loop. The alleged shooter also released a manifesto denouncing Muslims and immigrants, police said.


More than eight hours after the shooting video at one of the mosques was first live-streamed on Facebook--apparently by the man who killed 49 people in a mosque in Christchurch--it still was getting uploaded and re-uploaded continuously by other people onto YouTube. A simple search of obvious keywords for the event, such as “New Zealand,” surfaced a long list of videos, many of which were uncensored and extended cuts of the massacre.


The world’s biggest video site, which for years has automatically flagged nudity, copyrighted music and other types of questionable content, has repeatedly struggled to combat violent content, sparking a series of scandals over the years…

Read on.