AN Australian teenager has been targeted by a wave of vicious hate posts on Facebook after members of a group she joined discovered she was Jewish.
The 16-year-old was told by one person “don’t come back filthy Jew”, another said “all aboard the Jew express next stop Auschwitz gassing chambers” and others made Holocaust-related slurs with sexual references.
When the girl reported it to Facebook, she was told the anti-Semitic barrage “doesn’t go against our specific community standards”.
To make matters worse, the posts, which terrified the girl, were not promptly taken down by the administrator of the 16+ Hangouts group.
When the girl asked one of the leaders in the room to stop the abuse, it triggered further abusive mail, and a separate hate group, calling themselves “Auschwitz” was set up and was shared multiple times.
“When they found out I was Jewish, they began sending multiple messages, which lasted just about 24 hours,” she told The AJN.
“I was shocked, terrified, and I was up all night thinking why they were doing it, what started it.
“Mostly I was just shocked because they’re around my age and the thought that people of around my age can do that is scary,” she said.
The girl followed the prompts to lodge an online complaint with Facebook but received a standard reply stating: “We looked over the profile you reported, and though it doesn’t go against one of our specific community standards, we understand that the profile or something they shared may still be offensive to you.”
Facebook, a multi-billion dollar business, does not appear to have an Australian phone hotline for complaints.
B’nai B’rith Anti-Defamation Commission (ADC) chair Dvir Abramovich told The AJN that Facebook failed its users badly by not having an administrator immediately take down the offensive posts.
“I am shocked that these young people so enthusiastically engaged in this digital anti-Semitic lynching … The fight against this vicious explosion of bigotry and disturbing harassment is everyone’s problem, and goes far beyond the Jewish community.”