Extremists thrive on Facebook, despite recent shut-downs

A number of Facebook pages linked to the Slovak far right have been blocked; dozens of others flourish.

Illustrative stock photoIllustrative stock photo (Source: SME)

The Facebook presence of Slovakia’s far-right parliamentary party of Marian Kotleba has been somewhat hindered in recent weeks. The social network has banned the profiles of three of its members over racism and hate speech concerns, yet many similar Facebook pages continue to thrive.

There are about 140 profiles directly managed, related to, or supporting the extremist Peoples Party – Our Slovakia (ĽSNS) on Facebook, according to the counting done by the Denník N daily in April 2017. In April and May, Facebook took down 37 of them, after they were heavily reported by critics of the party, mostly for spreading hate speech, racism, and hoaxes. Yet it is unclear why Facebook chooses to take down some pages while others, with similar content, remain online even after review.

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