In Brief

Twitter blocks Britain First leaders over hate speech

Far-right group bosses banned from social media site under new user policy

Twitter has blocked leaders of the far-right group Britain First for posting three anti-Muslim videos that were later shared by Donald Trump.

Britain First leader Paul Godding and his deputy, Jayda Fransen, were among several senior figures in the group whose accounts were suspended on Monday following a change in the social media site’s hate speech policy, The Daily Telegraph reports.

Twitter had come under fire for not responding to the anti-Muslim videos, posted by Fransen in November and then retweeted by the US president

Yesterday the social network announced in a blogpost that “hateful imagery will now be considered sensitive media under our media policy”.

It adds: “We consider hateful imagery to be logos, symbols, or images whose purpose is to promote hostility and malice against others based on their race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or ethnicity/national origin.”

However, while Trump shared content now deemed to be in breach of the site’s user policy, Twitter will not “take action against government officials”, according to Bloomberg

The bans mean it is no longer possible to view the accounts of Golding and Fransen, nor any content they have posted or shared, says BBC News. The posts shared by Trump no longer appear on his Twitter feed, either. 

Hateful imagery, such as the Nazi swastika, can still be posted, the news site says, but it will be hidden behind a “sensitive media” banner that users can choose to manually remove.

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