The British man who used the word “vile” to describe the Jews he observed may or may not be an antisemite, a racist, a Nazi, or any other type of bad fellow.
What he’s not is a man who violated Twitter policies.
Sadly, he’s something of a coward because he removed the offending Tweet and he’s apologized. We can’t be too hard on him though because his apology may have been made to keep his job and keep him out of jail. Criticizing Jews (and Muslims) is illegal in Britain, I believe.
Twitter has been accused of giving the green light to anti-Semitism after refusing to remove a tweet branding Jews ‘absolutely vile’ because it was ‘not abusive’.
The post, which referred to orthodox Jews in an area of north-east London, read: ‘Drove through Stamford Hill today. F*** me the gaffs[sic] riddled with full blown Jews. Absolutely vile.’
A local community leader who reported the message to Twitter but was told it would not be taken down as there was ‘no violation of rules regarding abusive behaviour’.
The anti-Semitic tweet was posted by ‘part time disk jockey’ Thomas Andrews at 8.40pm on October 14 and reported to Twitter at 9.03pm.
Other users branded the message ‘vile’ and subsequently attacked the social media giant’s decision not to remove it.
Labour MP John Mann claimed Twitter’s decision not to remove the post showed it had ‘absolutely no interest’ in clamping down on hate speech.
He told MailOnline: ‘Twitter has got no interest whatsoever in moderating this kind of content. This company repeatedly allows offensive and bullying materials.’
Mr Mann announced he would be pushing for a change in the law to make social media giants liable for hate speech hosted on their networks.
‘I will be proposing in the New Year a change in the law to make Twitter liable for these kinds of vile comments,’ he said.
‘Rightly, newspapers and the broadcast media can held to account but Twitter can’t be.’
Following the storm of criticism from members of the public Mr Andrews deleted the post and made his account private, tweeting an apology at 10.21pm.
This read: ‘I apologise for this tweet. It was extremely naive and disrespectful of me. I wasn’t aware of the area’s culture but have since seen sense.’
Stamford Hill is home to more than 20,000 Haredi Jews, the largest orthodox community in Britain.
Twitter’s actions were condemned by the Campaign Against Antisemitism, who accused of letting hate speech run ‘out of control’.
Dr Daniel Allington, Head of Online Monitoring and Investigations, told MailOnline: ‘Once again, utterly brazen antisemitism has been given the green light on Twitter.
‘Twitter claims that every report of racist abuse is reviewed by a highly-trained team, but it seems to have no clear understanding of the difference between free speech and hate speech.’