UN chief appeals for an end to online hate

(VOVWORLD) -The UN secretary-general warned of social media's role in spreading violent extremism around the globe as he marked Holocaust Remembrance Day on Friday, urging policy makers to help stop online hate.  

Speaking at a commemoration ceremony at the United Nations in New York on Friday, Antonio Guterres said parts of the internet were turning into "toxic waste dumps for hate and vicious lies" that were driving "extremism from the margins to the mainstream." 

He was issuing an urgent appeal to everyone with influence across the information ecosystem to stop the hate,  set up guardrails and enforce them. 

Guterres accused social media platforms and advertisers of profiting off the spread of hateful content by using algorithms that amplify hate to keep users glued to their screens. 

Holocaust Memorial Day (January 27) commemorates the tragedy that occurred during the Second World War - the genocide which led to the death of 6 million Jews committed by the Nazi Germany.  The date was chosen because it marks the day in 1945 that Auschwitz, Nazi Germany’s largest concentration and death camp, was liberated by Soviet troops.  January 27 has been chosen by the United Nations as the International Holocaust Remembrance Day since 2006.