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GLAAD STATEMENT ON RELEASE OF 2023 ADL ONLINE HATE AND HARASSMENT REPORT
- Last updated: July 21, 2023
GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis responded to today’s release of the 2023 Anti-Defamation League (ADL) Online Hate and Harassment Report which found that LGBTQ people were again the most harassed among marginalized demographic groups online.
According to the ADL: “The survey found 76 percent of transgender respondents have been harassed online in their lifetimes, with 51 percent of transgender respondents being harassed in the past 12 months, by far the highest of any reported demographic category. After transgender respondents, LGBQ+ people experienced the most harassment at 47 percent in the past 12 months.”
ADL’s full press release on the new report below and here.
“76% of transgender respondents have been harassed in their lifetimes, with 51% of transgender respondents being harassed in the past 12 months, by far the highest of any reported demographic category. After transgender respondents, LGBQ+ [lesbian, gay, bisexual and queer] people experienced the most harassment at 47% in the past 12 months (together, transgender and LGBQ+ people were the most harassed demographic group every year we have conducted this survey).”
Says GLAAD’s Sarah Kate Ellis – and via @sarahkateellis on Twitter:
“We all deserve to feel safe on social media and must join together across marginalized communities to call for action as online violence and hate speech jumps into the world. Social media platforms refuse to act with urgency and instead profit from the precipitous rise of anti-LGBTQ hate and harassment online, especially the massive spike of anti-transgender harassment and disinformation. The extremists, pundits, and politicians who drive such hate should be ashamed of themselves and be met with accountability when they break rules set by a platform. Victimizing marginalized groups of people for political and financial gain is heinous behavior. We are thankful for ADL’s continued research into this space and ongoing advocacy to call for immediate change.”
About GLAAD’s Social Media Safety Index
On June 15th, GLAAD announced the findings of its third annual Social Media Safety Index (SMSI), a report on LGBTQ user safety, privacy, and expression. All five major social media platforms – Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube and Twitter – received low and failing scores on the SMSI Platform Scorecard for the second consecutive year. The SMSI found that the platforms continue to fail at enforcing the safeguarding of LGBTQ users from online hate speech, fail at providing transparency in the use of LGBTQ-specific user data and fail in expressing commitments to protecting LGBTQ users, specifically, policies and commitments to protect transgender, nonbinary, and gender non-conforming users from being targeted.
GLAAD’s 2023 SMSI also takes a comprehensive look at how anti-LGBTQ online hate speech incites, spreads and manifests real-world harm and violence. The study explores the realities around how false and baseless tropes, hateful slurs and rhetoric, misinformation and lies and conspiracy theories about LGBTQ people often go unchecked across social platforms and that hate speech and other content policies are often not enforced around such content. GLAAD calls on social media platforms to take responsibility and enforce their own policies to protect their LGBTQ users.
Read the full report at: GLAAD.org/SMSI
GLAAD also this week worked with more than 250 LGBTQ and ally actors, notables, and other leaders to release a public letter created by GLAAD and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) calling on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, and Twitter to better enforce hate speech, harassment, misinformation, and other existing content policies aimed at protecting transgender, nonbinary, and gender non-conforming users and all LGBTQ people. The letter included signatures from notbales including Elliot Page, Ariana Grande, Laverne Cox, Shawn Mendes, Gabrielle Union-Wade, Cynthia Erivo, Dan Levy, Sia, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more. Addressed to CEOs Mark Zuckerberg (Instagram and Facebook), Neal Mohan (YouTube), Shou Zi Chew (TikTok), and Linda Yaccarino & Elon Musk (Twitter), this powerful line-up of more than 250 LGBTQ people and allies call on each platform to urgently take action to protect trans and LGBTQ users by creating and enforcing stronger content and ad policies against hate speech and harassment, instituting better protections against over-enforcement and censorship, as well as meeting with community leaders and creators to hear about real world harms that result from anti-trans content. The full letter and list of signatories can be found here.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Online Hate and Harassment Reaches Record Highs, ADL Survey Finds
Teens experience high rates of harassment; LGBTQ+ harassment at record highs
New York, NY, June 28, 2023 … More than half of all Americans (52 percent) have reported experiencing online hate or harassment in their lifetimes, according to ADL’s fifth annual survey of online hate and harassment – the highest rate since 2020.
Overall, reports of hate and harassment over the last 12 months increased by nearly every measure and within almost every demographic group. These increases were most pronounced among LGBQ+ (47 percent), Black/African American (38 percent), and Muslim (38 percent) respondents. The rate of harassment ever experienced was exceptionally high among transgender people, at 76 percent. Jewish respondents reported an increase to 26 percent in the past 12 months, up from 21 percent in 2022.
“We’re confronted with record levels of hate across the internet, hate that too often turns into real violence and danger in our communities,” said Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL CEO. “The time for talking, and for planning, is long over. It’s time to execute on the priorities set out by the White House and other policymakers, and it’s time for big tech companies to deliver on their promises to reduce hate online.”
“For years, social media platforms have been paying lip service to trust and safety, insisting their teams have things under control,” said Yael Eisenstat, ADL Vice President and head of the Center for Technology & Society. “But the lived experience of social media users is telling us a far different story – that harassment on social media is sustained and is getting worse. This is happening as the platforms continue to scale back their content moderation teams. It is time for social media companies to truly protect users against hate, and for policymakers to require transparency reporting and data disclosures on how these companies are actually enforcing their own rules.”
Rates of harassment have increased dramatically over the past 12 months. Teens ages 13-17 reported a sharp rise in online hate and harassment: 51 percent of teenagers experienced some form of online harassment, compared to 36 percent in 2022, an increase of 15 percentage points. Additionally, 33 percent of all adults experienced some form of online hate or harassment in the past 12 months, up from 23 percent in 2022.
Due to the recent proliferation of extreme anti-transgender legislation and rhetoric, ADL sampled transgender individuals separately this year. The survey found 76 percent of transgender respondents have been harassed online in their lifetimes, with 51 percent of transgender respondents being harassed in the past 12 months, by far the highest of any reported demographic category. After transgender respondents, LGBQ+ people experienced the most harassment at 47 percent in the past 12 months.
ADL also found 80 percent of Jewish respondents were more likely to worry about being harassed for their religion, compared to 41 percent of non-Jews. And they were more likely than in past years to avoid identifying themselves as Jewish, including on social media (25 percent in 2023 compared to 17 percent in 2022).
Despite the many commitments platforms have made to reduce harmful content and improve resources for those targeted, hate and harassment plague many online spaces, though it varies across platforms. Of those who reported being harassed, 54 percent indicated harassment took place on Facebook. Harassment rose on Twitter (up to 27 percent from 21 percent in 2022) and on Reddit (up to 15 percent from 5 percent in 2022).
The survey of 2,139 individuals was conducted online from March 7 through March 24, 2023 by YouGov, a leading public opinion and data analytics firm, on behalf of ADL’s Center for Technology and Society. The results are weighted and representative of all Americans 18 and older.
The survey has a margin of error of +/- 2 percentage points among the total sample. The youth survey of 550 13–17-year-olds was also conducted on behalf of ADL by YouGov from March 23 through April 6, 2023. The margin of sampling error for the full sample of youth is plus or minus 4 percentage points. In an effort to understand the experiences of individuals who may be especially targeted because of their group identity, the survey included oversamples of respondents who identified as Jewish, Muslim, Black or African American, Asian American, Hispanic or Latino/a, and LGBTQ+.
ADL is the leading anti-hate organization in the world. Founded in 1913, its timeless mission is “to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all.” Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of antisemitism and bias, using innovation and partnerships to drive impact. A global leader in combating antisemitism, countering extremism and battling bigotry wherever and whenever it happens, ADL works to protect democracy and ensure a just and inclusive society for all. More at www.adl.org.
About GLAAD: GLAAD rewrites the script for LGBTQ acceptance. As a dynamic media force, GLAAD tackles tough issues to shape the narrative and provoke dialogue that leads to cultural change. GLAAD protects all that has been accomplished and creates a world where everyone can live the life they love. For more information, please visit www.glaad.org or connect with GLAAD on Facebook and Twitter.
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