Reverso is a free online French-English dictionary that claims to help its users gain a native-like understanding of these languages. To do this, Reverso provides examples of contextual sentence-use for each word in question. Shockingly, the International League Against Racism and Antisemitism (LICRA), GTTO partner in France, found that Reverso would often include violently Antisemitic examples.
When French users searched for the use of “Jews” in English, Reverso suggested highly hateful sentences like – “the Jews are tainting the blood of the Germans”. Even more disturbingly, words that have no direct relation to Judaism produced similarly Antisemitic results. For example, Reverso suggests that “Dachau was so much nicer than Auschwitz" is a typical use of the word “nicer” in the English context. While Reverso is clearly at fault here, these revelations point to a broader, long-running problem – namely, online companies’ inability or unwillingness to take hate-speech and trolling seriously.
Appalled by this, LICRA sent a official complaint to Reverso. To date, LICRA had not received any reply. However, the online dictionary has removed all contextual sentences from its entries for “Jews” and other religious groups, like “Muslims”. While contextual sentences have been kept for entries like “nicer”, offensive anti-Semitic examples appear to have been removed.