Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Anti-Semitic and Nazi Clips On YouTube Trigger Legal Questions

The growing use of YouTube to disseminate anti-Semitic and neo-Nazi videos is raising legal questions around the world. In Columbus, Ohio on Tuesday the police department began an internal investigation into police officer Susan L. Purtee's involvement in making of a number of videos criticizing Jews, blacks and immigrants. (Columbus Dispatch.) The videos, made by Purtee and her sister, were originally placed on their own website. Some ended up on You Tube, including a ten-minute anti-Semitic clip titled "The Jews". (Columbus Dispatch 2.)

Meanwhile, in Germany the country's neo-Nazi party was until recently using You Tube to broadcast its own anti-Semitic edition of the news. Videos of Nazi rallies and neo-Nazi rock bands were also posted there. In response, Germany's Interior Ministry has encouraged people to file suit against YouTube under the country's laws that ban neo-Nazi propaganda in the country. YNet News reported yesterday that Google, which owns you Tube, has said it will examine whether the videos violate its policy against "malicious use of stereotypes designed to attack or humiliate gender, sexual tendency, race, religion or nationality".