Israeli lawsuit: Facebook should be accountable for terrorist videos

Islamic Extremism

A billion dollars to families of terror victims: that’s what Israeli lawyers who filed a class-action suit against Facebook say the social media giant should pay for “providing support and resources” to Hamas, which several countries brand a terror organization.

If the claim is successful, it will set a major precedent for Facebook and other social media platforms. CCTV’s Stephanie Freid reports.

Two Palestinians went on a knifing and shooting rampage on a Jerusalem bus killing three Israelis and wounding several others. One of the victims: 76-year-old American-Israeli elementary school principal Richard Lakin.

Lakin was shot in the head, sliced open, and repeatedly stabbed.

Scott Schober on terror and social media

For more, we spoke with Scott Schober, president and CEO of Berkeley Varitronics Systems, Inc.

His family and families of other victims of terror in Israel said these type glorification and tutorial videos and postings are all-too-common on social media platforms. They want Facebook to be held accountable.

“I actually saw a horrific video that shows exactly how to slit somebody down the middle and cut all of their intestines in exactly the way that my father was butchered,” Micah Avni said.

Investigators behind the lawsuit said there are countless numbers of incitement and terror instructional videos on Facebook.

According to a recent Israeli survey, there are about 8 million Palestinians following Islamic Jihad and Hamas sites on Facebook. Both have been classified by the United States and other countries as terrorist organizations.

Lawyers filing the billion-dollar claim maintain that Facebook uses algorithms to eradicate nudity, advertising, and inappropriate language, so why is terror incitement not similarly controlled?

Facebook has historically been protected from suits under the U.S. Communications Decency Act and Free Speech rights. The legal team in this case is invoking the U.S. Anti-Terrorism Act to override that immunity.

If the suit succeeds, it will likely set a precedent for controlling content on other popular social media sites like Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.