Twitter is facing legal action from two groups in Germany for failing to remove six posts targeting Jewish people and denying the Holocaust, after being reported.
Billionaire Elon Musk acquired Twitter in October 2022, following which the posts were published on the network.
However, none of the tweets by Elon Musk mentioned anything about the case.
In Germany, denial of Anti Semitism and Holocaust are illegal. They are also against Twitter’s terms and conditions.
Avital Grinberg, president of the European Union of Jewish Students (EUJS), said, “Twitter has betrayed our trust.” The organization, along with HateAid, has led to civil action.
We are suing @Twitter!
Today, @EUJS and @HateAid announced that we are suing Twitter for neglecting to remove reported hateful content from its platform which seeks incitement of the people.
It is time to hold social media platforms responsible.#TwitterTrial pic.twitter.com/ZqD4tbuLZ3
— EUJS – European Union of Jewish Students (@EUJS) January 25, 2023
“By allowing hateful content to spread, the company fails to protect users- and Jews in particular,” she added.
The case will reveal whether Twitter should, under contract, remove such posts.
Josephine Ballon, HateAid legal head, said “Twitter assures it won’t tolerate violence on its platform. Users must be able to rely on that.”
Before Twitter was bought by Musk in 2021, the Campaign Against Antisemitism, with which it had associated itself, stated the company’s policies were dwindling and only 400 of 1,000 tweets having hateful content targeting Jewish people were deleted.
In 2022, Twitter was denounced for being slow in removing tweets by UK musician Wiley for which he later apologized, saying they “were looked at as antisemitic”.
At the time, Britain’s then prime minister Boris Johnson had said that social media platforms are required to “go further and faster to remove content like this.”
According to the UK Online Safety, technology companies would have to pay large fines for failing to delete offensive content.
Culture Secretary Michelle Donelan expects this policy to be passed this year.