Hogan Lovells Joins forces with Global Parliamentarians and Web Experts to Tackle Online Hate

LONDON, 26 OCTOBER 2011 - Today Hogan Lovells will host a meeting of parliamentarians and internet company representatives from around the world to discuss how best to combat internet hate, ahead of a hearing in the UK Houses of Parliament on 27 October 2011.

The event will see Hogan Lovells partner Christopher Wolf and Israel's Minister of Public Affairs and Diaspora Affairs Yuli Edelstein lead a discussion on the nature and scope of internet hate and how best to tackle it.

Christopher and Yuli co-chair the Internet Hate Speech Task Force of the Inter-Parliamentary Coalition for Combating Anti-Semitism (ICCA). This Task Force has been formed by the ICCA in a bid to expand the coalition's general mission of fighting anti-Semitism to combating all forms of online hate including areas such as racism, Islamophobia, homophobia and misogyny.

The ICCA's Task Force will then present at the Houses of Parliament on the types of hate speech appearing on the internet, the various online media through which it appears and the regional aspects of online hate around the world. The hearing will also highlight the impact that internet hate can have, including its role in fostering hate crimes, and it will include testimonies from experts and witnesses.

John Mann MP, co-founder of the ICCA and chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group Against Anti-Semitism will be hosting the meeting at the Houses of Parliament.
The Task Force plans additional hearings on steps to counter online hate, leading to a report containing recommendations in late 2012.

Minister Edelstein, commenting on the work of the Task Force, said:

"The issue of hate on the internet needs greater attention given its scope and potential for harm. It is gratifying that so many high calibre individuals have come together to provide positive approaches to counter the effects of online hate.  I am honored to be helping to lead the effort.

Christopher Wolf, who is a director of Hogan Lovells' Privacy and Information Management practice, said:

“It is an honour for me to co-chair the Task Force with Minister Edelstein.  The serious harm hate speech can cause cannot be underestimated.  Our work on the Task Force is underpinned by the recognition that the internet must remain free and open and there is no question about the importance of free expression - but that does not mean that we cannot take steps to counter and alleviate the effects of online hate.”

John Mann MP added:

“Hate on the internet is a global problem requiring a global solution. I hope bringing Parliamentarians and industry experts together to seek out and highlight best practice will be another step towards a more tolerant online society.”


• The Inter-parliamentary Coalition for Combating Anti-Semitism (ICCA) brings together Parliamentarians from around the world to lead the fight against resurgent global anti-Semitism. Its principal purpose is to share knowledge, experience, best practice, and recommendations, encouraging their dissemination in an attempt to deal more effectively with contemporary anti-Semitism.

• The ICCA is run by a steering committee made up of Members of Parliaments from around the world including: Irwin Cotler MP (Canada), Minister Yuli Edelstein (Israel); John Mann MP (UK);  Fiamma Nirenstein MP (Italy); Representative Chris Smith (USA); Gert Weisskirchen former MdB (Germany); Emanuelis Zingeris MP (Lithuania).

• The ICCA Ottawa Protocol adopted in November 2010 called for the establishment of an International Task Force of Internet specialists comprised of parliamentarians and experts to create common indicators to identify and monitor anti-Semitism and other manifestations of hate online and to develop policy recommendations for governments and international frameworks to address these problems.

•The ADL is providing support for the efforts of the ICCA Task Force, including the participation of the ADL expert leading the agency's work on internet hate

• Lawyers from Hogan Lovells in the US and the UK provided pro bono assistance in organising the hearing and materials for the Task Force. 
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