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Tuesday 30 May 2023 Dublin: 16°C
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# Social Media
Vast majority of LGBTQ+ young people exposed to 'dramatic increase' in hateful content online
Europe saw the ‘deadliest rise in anti-LGBTI+ violence in over a decade’ in 2022.

87% OF LGBTQ+ young people have seen or experienced anti-LGBTQ+ hate and harassment on social media in the past year, according to a survey of over 1,200 LGBTQ+ students in Ireland.

The survey by the national organisation Belong To also found that only 21% of LGBTQ+ youth who reported abusive or harmful content online saw action from a social media platform.

In cases where  social media companies took action against the content, it was removed in 12% of cases, 4% saw the offending user temporarily suspended, and 5% of reports resulted in the offending account being banned.

The remaining 79% of LGBTQ+ young people were either informed that no violation of community guidelines was found, or received no response from the platform.

Speaking at the launch of Belong To’s  ‘It’s Our Social Media’ campaign, the organisation’s CEO Moninne Griffith said that social media companies need to do more to protect LGBTQ+ people from harassment.

“We have witnessed a dramatic increase in the rate of hateful, discriminatory anti-LGBTQ+ content shared on social media platforms, and the direct targeting and harassment of members of the LGBTQ+ community.”

“Our research with LGBTQ+ youth highlights the urgent need for social media platforms to be consistent and effective in implementing their community guidelines to prevent the spreading of homophobic, biphobic and transphobic content online.”

These figures come two weeks after the publication of a report that revealed that Europe saw the “deadliest rise in anti-LGBTI+ violence in over a decade” last year.

The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association noted that the translation of hate speech into real-world, physical violence “is not only in countries where hate speech is rife, but also in countries where it is widely believed that LGBTI+ people are progressively accepted.”

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