This week Twitter announced that it has removed an additional 235,000 twitter accounts, “in order to maintain a safe environment for users on Twitter”. The company said that the accounts were banned for their links to terrorism, while some were suspended for violating twitters policies on supporting extremism. In total the San Francisco-based firm has banned over 360,000 accounts, saying the rate has gone up to 80 percent since last year.
Twitter also highlighted it’s own efforts to counter violent extremism online. In a blog post, the company mentioned how it is closely working with Islamic organizations from countries like France, UK, UAE, Indonesia and the USA to counter extremist ideology.
In U.S. Twitter has partnered with the True Islam campaign to counter extremist content, it is a non-sectarian, not-for-profit group based out of Washington D.C. The campaign is a brainchild of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, the oldest Muslim Community in the country. The community is also behind the Muslims for Peace, Muslims for Life and Muslims for Loyalty campaigns.
Salaam Bhatti, the national spokesperson for True Islam campaign said:
“This is a great step in the right direction. Twitter [has become] a digital social media battlefield of some sort which is also a way of recruiting people. As we can see that the extremist groups are losing on the territorial front, so they’re going to social media again to recruit the youth”.
The Ahmadiyya community has also launched “Stop the CrISIS” campaign to counter ISIS propaganda, and to prevent radicalization among Muslim youth.
This summer over 35,000 people from the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community gathered to condemn ISIS and pledge allegiance to the “Khalifa of Islam”. The community has been lead by a peaceful Caliphate for over a 100 years and is currently headed by the 5th Caliph, His Holiness Mirza Masroor Ahmad from London. Their motto is “love for all hatred for none”.