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Viral Hate: Containing Its Spread on the Internet Hardcover – June 4, 2013

3.0 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

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The speed, ease, and vitality of communication via the Internet have made it exponentially easier to find and spread hatred, from incitement to kill doctors who provide abortion services to attacks on Jews and Muslims. Foxman, director of the Anti-Defamation League, and Wolf, an Internet privacy lawyer, cite numerous instances of hatred fueled by websites, chat rooms, social media, and video and audio downloads. Racists, anti-Semites, misogynists, homophobes, and other haters use websites, some of them cloaked in apparent legitimacy, for recruitment and communication between like-minded individuals and for collaboration in acts of violence. The authors point to tactics ranging from broad circulation of racist jokes to threats on individuals to games that offer attacks on women and members of racial and ethnic groups. The global reach of the Internet and the profusion of U.S. and international laws protecting online speech add to the difficulty of balancing free-speech rights and protection against hateful speech and incitement to violence. Foxman and Wolf explore the complex issues and the idea of getting Google and Yahoo to more carefully monitor offensive content. --Vanessa Bush


“Abe Foxman and Chris Wolf have done a remarkable job in Viral Hate of balancing important concerns about freedom of expression with a blunt look at how the Internet can distort those freedoms to undermine a democratic society that we cherish. This is a significant book that will provoke discussion and the good news is that it is thoroughly readable as well.” ―Mike McCurry, former Press Secretary to President Bill Clinton, Partner, Public Strategies Washington

“At a time when many question whether the First Amendment is up to the challenge of hate speech in a borderless medium, Foxman and Wolf argue that fealty to first principles must remain the lodestar. While the global Internet may have amplified the voices of hate, it has also enriched the responses available in our constitutional tool box. Our capacity for counter speech, education, and responsible action is now unbounded. It is now up to all who benefit from the open Internet to heed the call.” ―Leslie Harris, President, CEO, Center for Democracy & Technology

“The tradeoff between freedom of speech on the one end and the right to be protected from vicious wide spread hatred and bigotry on the other end was never more essential, more challenging, more urgent, and more tricky than it is today. The internet being, for better or worse, the ever-biggest propagation engine in history, makes it all the more critical. This tricky balance is thoroughly discussed by Abe Foxman and Christopher Wolf. A must read.” ―Yossi Vardi, Founding Investor, ICQ (Computer Instant Messaging Program)


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (June 4, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0230342175
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230342170
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,427,664 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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