Katie Hopkins, one of the most prominent hate speech commentators of the last decade has had her twitter account suspended and her tweets hidden following a campaign by the anti-hate group Centre for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH).
By: Jeremy Ullmann
Hopkins has been using her social media channels along with media appearances and work as a columnist for both The Sun and The Daily Mail to spread far-right and conservative views since her stint as a contestant on The Apprentice in 2007. Often positioning herself as an advocate for free speech, she has amassed over a million followers on twitter alone. Get The Trolls Out has been reacting and debunking her hateful content for many years.
The CCDH group (backed by Sadiq Khan, Rachel Riley and Gary Linekar among others) met with Twitter, stressing the need to discuss excluding "hate actors from public discourse".
Following the meeting, Hopkin’s account was locked, with only a few old retweets still displayed and a company message saying: ‘This Tweet is no longer available because it violated the Twitter Rules.’
A Twitter spokesman commented:" Keeping Twitter safe is a top priority for us - abuse and harassment have no place on the service. "We take enforcement action against any account that is violative of our rules - which includes violations of our hateful conduct policy and abusive behaviour policy. These rules apply to everyone using our service - regardless of the account involved."
CCDH’s discussed the importance of regulating social media: There is a long road ahead before social media is made safe for dialogue, information exchange and the formation and maintenance of relationships. The fact parents are so hesitant and fearful of allowing children onto social media platforms shows how toxic many of these environments have become.
CCDH’s success shows the necessity of campaigning and stand up to individuals who spread hate-speech. When many social media platforms let hate-speech thrive, holding them to account is sometimes the only way to ensure those who break company policy are reprimanded accordingly.