Terrorism is a growing global threat with a vital online component that Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube hope to help fight against by establishing the Global Internet Forum To Counter Terrorism. The goals of the Forum include not only collaboration between the four companies that created it in order to help fight the online presence and growth of terrorism and extremism, but also collaboration with smaller companies and worldwide governments. The aim of the whole thing is to silence the voices of terrorist ideals the world over, whether it’s extremist hate speech used to fan the flames of unrest, or propaganda meant to reach people worldwide and try to bring them around to the extremists’ way of thinking.
The newly established alliance is meant to continue the work of the EU Internet Forum and the Shared Industry Hash Database, among others. To that end, on top of government involvement, the Global Internet Forum To Counter Terrorism is going to establish formal guidelines for fighting terrorism online, and the members will be talking to entities like academic institutes and civic groups, and even calling for the involvement of alliances like the European Union and United Nations. These entities already have a vested interest in squashing anything that would glorify or help expand terrorism and extremism, so getting them on board and implementing the Forum’s policies worldwide will likely be fairly easy, especially given the economic and influential might of the four founding members.
All four founding members already have counter-terrorism initiatives in place on their services, and will be working hard on creating new initiatives, protocols, and other tools within the group. This knowledge will be shared with any applicable entities and groups, including the UN Security Council Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate and ICT4Peace, both of whom the Forum is partnered up with. Some of the first things that the Forum will be doing include creating a set of best practices to help suppress online terrorist and extremist speech, as well as working together to implement elements of all of their individual anti-terrorism counterspeech efforts into one another. All of the information and developments springing from those actions will, of course, be shared with all Forum members.