France orders Twitter to identify authors of anti-Semitic messages

[JURIST] A French court on Thursday ordered Twitter [social media website] to allow for the identification of authors responsible for recent anti-Semitic messages, as well as to establish a mechanism to alert authorities of illegal hate messages. The lawsuit was brought [RFI report] by the Jewish Students' Union of France (UEJF) [advocacy website, in French] last October after a series of anti-Semitic and racist tweets emerged on the social media website, with most messages using the hashtag #AGoodJew. While UEJF welcomed the decision [RFI report], some reactionaries to the ruling actually decided to increase their anti-Semitic tweets. UEJF admitted that there is still work to be done regarding anti-Semitic culture in France but declared it is nonetheless pleased with the progressive step taken by the French court. Twitter faces a fine of 1,000 euros per day if it does not comply with Thursday's order within two weeks.

Anti-Semitism [JURIST news archive] has not recently received much international attention, though it has long been an issue of global concern. In 2010 Canada released a report [JURIST report] indicating that anti-Semitism in the country had risen 11.4 percent since 2008. The report, released by B'nai Brith Canada [advocacy website], also found that anti-Semitic incidents increased globally in 2009, linking them to a rise in Middle East strike. In March 2009 the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) [official website] found that there was a rise in European anti-Semitism incidents [JURIST report] since December of that year. In November 2008, the German parliament passed a resolution [JURIST report] requiring the government to track reports of anti-Semitism in the country and fund education to combat the problem. In July 2008 the Council of Europe [offical website] released a report [JURIST report] emphasizing the need for European countries to examine their human rights records.

 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.