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Twitter to remove anti-Semitic posts after legal threat
World

Twitter to remove anti-Semitic posts after legal threat

19.10.2012 From our online archive
Twitter, a day after saying it blocked a neo-Nazi account in Germany in a global first, made another major concession Friday by agreeing to remove anti-Semitic posts in France, a lawyer said.

(AFP) Twitter, a day after saying it blocked a neo-Nazi account in Germany in a global first, made another major concession Friday by agreeing to remove anti-Semitic posts in France, a lawyer said.

The company did not immediately confirm the move, but the lawyer for a French Jewish student union said that after it threatened legal action, Twitter agreed to take down many of the offending tweets that have recently flooded the site.

UEJF lawyer Stephane Lilti said after a meeting with Twitter's lawyer in France that his client had scored an "important victory" over the micro-blogging site.

The student union on Thursday threatened to seek an injunction against Twitter to try to make it remove the offending tweets which proliferated in France with the hashtag #unbonjuif (#AGoodJew).

The tag has been one of the top trending words on French-language tweets and is often followed by comments such as: "#AGoodJew is a dead Jew".

The UEJF will by late Friday provide Twitter with a list of the tweets it wants removed, Lilti said, adding that the union also wants Twitter to provide the identities of the authors of the offending posts.

UEJF leader Jonathan Hayoun welcomed Twitter's "swift reaction in removing racist and anti-Semitic tweets that we had pointed out to them."

Neo-Nazi account closed after police request

On Thursday, Twitter said it had blocked a neo-Nazi group's account at the request of German police.

The move was the first time that the US firm had applied a policy known as "country-withheld content" which allows it to block an account at the request of state authorities.

In a move pitting censorship concerns against national laws on hate speech, Twitter said it had deployed the tool developed only this year to restrict content in a single country rather than simply delete posted comments.

German politicians welcomed the step to stop distributing the Besseres Hannover group's "hateful ideology", adding that social media sites including Facebook and YouTube had also complied with the request.