The current $1 billion dollar lawsuit against Facebook is for “providing a platform for [Hamas] militants to spread incitement and violence,” and this lawsuit isn’t the first. Facebook received similar charges in 2015, after a sharp increase of deadly Palestinian terrorist attacks in Israel and the West Bank. At that time, as reported by The Epoch Times, the Israel Law Center represented 20,000 individuals and filed a class action lawsuit against Facebook for being “complicit in the attacks.”
Using algorithms to connect terrorists and sympathizers
The premise used by the Israel Law Center was that Facebook didn’t just publish information based on free speech. They claimed that Facebook didn’t effectively monitor its content, and it flat out used “its algorithms connect the terrorists to the inciters,” just like Facebook does connecting anyone with just about anybody, while they keep track of just about everybody. No word yet on the outcome of the 2015 class action lawsuit, although Facebook did remove some of the more incendiary Hamas pages from their site shortly after that lawsuit was initiated.
Does the U.S. Anti-Terrorism Act trump free speech? Should it?
This new billion dollar lawsuit, according to Bloomberg.com, was made on the behalf of five families, four American and one Israeli, who all lost relatives in random terrorist attacks. One victim, as reported by the Jerusalem Post, was three year old Chaya Braun, who was in her stroller when she was intentionally run over by a Palestinian driver. Another was Taylor Force, a 28 year-young American military veteran, who was stabbed to death by a Palestinian while vacationing in Israel. The lawsuit representing these individuals and three other families was filed in the United States utilizing statures of the U.S. Anti-Terrorism Act. As per The Seattle Times, prosecutors claim that Facebook’s platform gives assistance to the Palestinian group Hamas by helping them raise money and share instruction in “recruiting, radicalizing . . . creating fear and carrying out attacks.” Hamas has been considered a terrorist organization in the U.S. since 1997.
Who determines where free speech ends?
Facebook has it’s own method for controlling unquestionable content called Community Standards. Here they discuss their rationale to allow “witness type” footage as in the recent murder of Philando Castile; Facebook also claims to not allow any video from a group or individual who is “celebrating the shooting.” Yet it is precisely this type of Hamas celebratory video that the lawsuits are claiming have not been restricted. If the provisions of the U.S. Anti Terrorist Act are not accepted as applicable, under other U.S. law, internet companies are not generally liable with regards to their content. Does this ring a familiar bell, like those pharmaceutical companies not being responsible for what they put in their vaccine syringes?
And what about those purposely placed Facebook Trends?
It will take time for these lawsuits to wind their way through the halls of justice and the courts of public opinion. It’s an interesting side note that while Facebook is being called out for abetting and aiding terrorist groups, former employees have blown the whistle on practices undertaken when another social movement, the Black Lives Matter, was just beginning. Stories about the then fledging group were being “manually inserted” by Facebook employees so Black Lives Matter would gain popularity and trend higher. The Daily Caller reports that there is some question about the true organic growth of the Black Lives Matter movement vs. what agenda Facebook had it making it a top social engineering trend. Who is Zuckerberg really working for?
Rather then rely on Facebook news feeds, why not put stock in organic seeds?
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