Facebook announces new search facility to combat Holocaust denial

Tech giant announces new tool amid renewed criticism over its response to Holocaust denial


As Facebook faced renewed criticism over its response to Holocaust denial, the tech firm has announced a new measure in an effort to tackle the issue. 
On Wednesday, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, the tech giant said it would now prompt users looking up terms associated with the Holocaust to visit an informative website about the Shoah, created by the World Jewish Congress and Unesco.
The resource,, was created with support from Chelsea Football Club’s “Say No to Antisemitism” campaign and is available in 19 languages.
It contains more than a dozen video survivor testimonies as well as key facts about the period including life under Nazi rule, targeted groups, the final solution and specific events such as the Babi Yar massacre and the vel d'hiv roundup. 
“We’re taking these steps given the well-documented rise in antisemitism globally and the alarming level of ignorance about the Holocaust, especially among young people.
“We want to help our community learn about the events that led to the Holocaust and the genocide of one-third of the Jewish people,” said Facebook’s vice president of integrity, Guy Rosen.
WJC president Ronald S Lauder said the new resource will “contribute greatly to promoting tolerance and empathy as the antidote to resurgent antisemitism, xenophobia, bigotry and hate.”
Unesco Director-General Audrey Azoulay, meanwhile, said the initiative was a “clear step in the right direction.”
The firm banned Holocaust denial and distortion last year amid growing pressure from critics and Jewish groups to stamp out hate speech and misinformation. 
But in a new report published Wednesday, the Anti-Defamation League gave Facebook and its subsidiary company, Instagram, a “D” - the lowest score - over its efforts to tackle Holocaust denial.
The group said it evaluated 10 major sites based on a number of criteria, including the firms’ responsiveness in removing content flagged by anonymous users.
Twitch, a video live streaming service, earned a “B” while Twitter, YouTube and TikTok were each awarded a “C”.
The ADL said that despite Facebook’s policy update, it still “fails to respond to reports when such hateful content is flagged."
“Facebook was the only platform in our investigation that confirmed after their own internal review process that the majority of the content we reported did not violate their community standards,” the organisation added in a statement.
CEO Jonathan A. Greenblatt, meanwhile, warned that social media companies had not “been nimble enough or taken the issue [of Holocaust denial] seriously”. 
“While some platforms have finally stepped up their efforts to stop the amplification of denial, others are still struggling to address antisemitism and Holocaust denial effectively.
“This is truly shameful at a time when antisemitic conspiracy theories are spreading globally, some outrageously based on the big lie that the Holocaust never happened."

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