'Hugely frustrating': Creighton says social media firms too slow in blocking terror content

Lucinda Creighton

Ireland's former Minister for European Affairs Lucinda Creighton has said that social media platforms are actively resisting changes to legislation that would oblige them to prevent the sharing of terrorism content online.

Facebook, Twitter, Google and YouTube were all criticised for their handling of extremist content on their platforms after video footage of the New Zealand mosque shootings was live streamed and widely shared online. Fifty people died in and after the attacks.

Gunman Brenton Tarrant's original 17-minute footage was uploaded to Facebook via mobile app LIVE4, and copies were quickly made which were then separately uploaded to other social media sites.

Most social media platforms said they took action to remove the videos, but the speed of their response was criticised as the content spread widely. Most platforms quickly banned the original video, but apparently struggled to keep up as copies were re-shared online.

Lucinda Creighton, who is senior advisor at the Counter Extremism Project said the platforms could do more.

"It's really hard to fathom...I understand why tech companies oppose privacy and data law because it impacts on their revenues and they don't like any change to how their revenue model functions, but this is reputational as well as being morally the right thing to do.

"They keep dragging their heels and saying there's little they can do...It's hugely frustrating."

Meanwhile, an 'Irish Stand' vigil in Dublin will today show solidarity with immigrants after the terror attack in New Zealand.

The event will get underway at 3pm today at the Famine Memorial in Dublin.

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