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France: Twitter gives information on anti-gay group to police following court ruling

Joseph McCormick July 12, 2013
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Microblogging site Twitter has agreed following a court ruling, to hand over information regarding the true identities of posters of anti-gay and anti-semitic tweets.

In January, the Paris High Court ruled that Twitter must give details of users who posted offensive messages on the microblogging site, at the request of several anti-hate groups.

This came after the the French Government recently suggested that Twitter should be fighting against homophobic, anti-semitic and racist tweets that potentially break its laws on hate speech.

The Union of Jewish Students of France (UEJF), made a complaint in April pushing the public Prosecutor of Paris to take action to ensure that the information was handed over by Twitter.

Twitter said handing over the information would “allow the identification of some authors” of the abusive tweets to French courts.

Both Twitter and the UEJF “actively continue to fight” against abusive and discriminatory messages, “in compliance with their respective national legislation”. 

Prior to January’s ruling, offensive hashtags began to trend including #SiMonFilsEstGay (if my son was gay), – users who used them speculated on the what pain, torture or other degrading treatment they would inflict on a gay child or other relative.

Others included #UnBonJuif (a good Jew), #UnJuifMort (a dead Jew), #SiMaFilleRameneUnNoir (if my daughter brings home a black man) and #SiJetaisNazi (if I were a Nazi) where users listed various fascist or racist acts they would perform.

Last year the University of Albertaʼs Institute for Sexual Minority Studies and Services published Twitter tracking figures to show that the word “faggot” was used more than 2.5 million times between July and September 2012. In just one week, it was in 219,000 tweets.

More: antisemitic, blogging, Europe, France, France, tweet, Twitter

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