For immediate release | Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Christchurch Call Must Be Backed by Laws and Regulations to Force Tech to Eliminate Extremism and Terrorism Online

Press Contact:

Media at CEP

(New York, N.Y.) – Counter Extremism Project (CEP) Executive Director David Ibsen released the following statement today regarding the 'Christchurch Call,' a voluntary international agreement that commits tech giants and foreign countries to be more vigilant about the spread of terrorist content and hate speech on social media:

“The Christchurch Call is a step in the right direction, and is a key example of how government efforts – in this case, led by New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and French President Emmanuel Macron – are crucial to compelling change and demanding responsible action from the tech industry. Such government pressure is desperately needed on a continuing and ongoing basis.

“CEP has consistently called upon tech companies to have transparent content removal practices; implement regular, transparent and measurable public reporting; increase research and development into technological solutions to prevent uploads of and quickly remove extremist and terrorist material; share best practices and proven technological solutions across sites and platforms; and very simply, enforce their terms of service. 

“While CEP is supportive of these commitments to combat the spread of terrorist and extremist content online, the Christchurch Call notes that these are all ‘voluntary commitments.’  We have seen that allowing the tech industry to self-regulate does not work and it cannot be trusted to voluntarily enforce such important measures to ensure public safety and security. The Christchurch Call must be part of a broader effort to enact legislative and regulatory measures.”