Useless government 101: Diversion is your friend

Photoshopped image Credit: Boondecker

It’s nonsense to think that a social media platform practising self-monitoring will prevent future terrorist attacks. Any value Facebook had to Brenton Tarrant was in communicating the actual attack so restricting his Facebook content would have been too little too late to prevent the tragedy. It would not have prevented the subsequent synagogue shooting in Poway, California either, where that shooter promised live-streaming but, fortunately, the stream did not work.

At any rate, Zuckerberg promises an algorithm to screen out violent live footage. It’s not Zuckerberg’s job to protect the public, and whilst he’s sympathetic, he’s not stupid enough to hold unrealistic expectations. His absence at Paris sent a message that international security is not Facebook’s primary concern.

Ardern and her puppet master can jibe all they like about Trump not turning up either – or bothering to send a representative, but why should he? Trump already treats American safety as his personal responsibility, not to be blithely ignored at the first opportunity to make a difference. Quote.

Former prime minister Helen Clark says those who aren’t attending the “incredibly important” Christchurch call meeting in Paris are saying more about themselves than the summit itself.

Speaking to Stuff ahead of releasing a report on reducing social media harm from her new think tank, Clark said the call was a “huge deal” and “all the key players should be there.

The Christchurch Call is a non-binding pledge prime minister Jacinda Ardern wants world leaders and tech companies to sign in Paris this week as response to the terrorist attack in Christchurch.” End of quote.


Signing us up to social media censorship won’t protect us from terrorism and it could do more harm than good.

Instead of identifying threats and tracking them to shut down attacks, censoring will simply push terrorists further underground. It makes more sense to locate them on fringe websites and monitor their activity using beefed up manpower and technology. Quote.

In both the California and New Zealand attacks, the shooters posted notice, motive, and evidence on the anonymous message board 8chan.

In New Zealand, Brenton Tarrant published a manifesto linked on the website, and live-streamed his attack on Facebook, via a link also posted to 8chan’s /pol/ (“politically incorrect”) board. 

The alleged San Diego shooter had also left his designs on 8chan, in an anti-Semitic screed that cited the Christchurch and Pittsburgh synagogue shootings as motivations.” End of quote.

The Atlantic

Screening out violent live-stream will not prevent future attacks but if governments did a better job keeping track of potential threats then Facebook would have no violent footage to remove.

This government has taken the same stance on social media that they did with gun control – misguided actions to divert attention from their lack of resolve to address terrorism.

Instead of messing about in Paris, Ardern should rattle her dags and head home to put her own house in order. It’s more likely she will stick to form and instead of addressing her government’s responsibility to keep us safe, she will say “don’t look at me, look over there!”