The big concern today in the Jewish community—here and in Israel—is over a Facebook page supporting the “Third Palestinian Intifada.” (There is also a YouTube page.) Israel and Jewish groups have been in full mobilization, though Facebook denied their request to have the page removed. Here’s that story via Bloomberg:
Israel asked Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg to remove a page that it says is supported by 230,000 “friends” that calls for a Palestinian intifada beginning on May 15.
The page includes remarks and movie clips that call for the killing of Israelis and Jews and the “liberating” of Jerusalem and of Palestine through acts of violence, Public Diplomacy and Diaspora Affairs Minister Yuli Edelstein wrote in a letter e- mailed to media yesterday.
“As Facebook’s CEO and founder you are obviously aware of the site’s great potential to rally the masses around good causes, and we are all thankful for that,” Edelstein said. “However, such potential comes hand in hand with the ability to cause great harm such as in the case of the wild incitement displayed on the above-mentioned page.”
Social media and other online information sources have taken center stage in uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain, and Libya, with participants using Twitter, YouTube, and Facebook to spread news and coordinate protests.
“While some kinds of comments and content may be upsetting for someone - criticism of a certain culture, country, religion, lifestyle, or political ideology, for example—that alone is not a reason to remove the discussion,” Debbie Frost, a spokeswoman for Facebook, said in an e-mailed statement.
That’s only partially true. Facebook has taken down pages before. When it hasn’t, Facebook has blamed users for not notifying them. (Remember “Kick a Jew Day?”)
However, Daniel Sieradski says in a series of tweets that those on the political right are overreacting. In one tweet, he wrote: