Online hate speech can take many forms and manifest itself in many ways. Over time, certain categories of the population such as Roma people, have been the subject of hate speech phenomenon more than other people. Even nowadays, Roma people have to face the hate speech phenomenon and to deal with hostile attitudes which are a result of the prejudices about Roma population.
In Romania, Roma population face many difficulties in terms of hate speech and bullying and Roma children have to deal at school to the same hostile attitudes. Many Roma children often drop out school because of this hostile attitudes towards them, they cannot face the bullying situations to which they are subjected in the long term. At present, considering the multitude of existing online social networks and their widespread use by young people, antigypsyst online hate speech has a very large spread in many countries and communities. In this case, there is a great need to implement as many projects as possible to support young people and help them in the fight against the phenomenon of online hate speech.
As students and young people represent one of main target group of our AMeLiE project, we would like to bring to your attention another great European initiative that wants to tackle the online hate speech – more precisely the Antigypsyist Online Hate Speech.
The PECAO – Peer Education to Counter Antigypsyist Online Hate Speech project was carried out in 10 European countries (Romania, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Spain, Hungary, France, Italy, Ukraine and North Macedonia), over a period of 2 years and developed and implemented tools to monitor hate speech in the online environment, through activities to train young people and raise awareness of the negative impact of this form of aggressive online expression.
Antigypsyist is a subtle and at the same time intense form of racism that is found in the public space (in the media and on online social networking platforms), but also in deeply rooted forms in the collective mentality through which actions of discrimination and social exclusion are founded for all age groups, status and gender of the Roma minority.
The Peer Education to Counter Antigypsyist Hate Speech Online project focused to address and counter Antigypsyist hate speech online by working with young people, using a combination of peer education and monitoring in order to obtain two-fold results: the peer education methodology serving the purpose to achieve a direct change in attitudes and actions of a high number of young people, and the monitoring to contribute to better understanding and a more systemic change of policies through advocacy based on the results.
A Synthesis Report on ANTIGYPSYIST ONLINE HATE SPEECH was developed in the framework of this project.
Each country participating in the project developed a report in their own language and the consortium also worked on developing a report at European level.
The Report at European level focuses on the antigipsistic online hate speech encountered by the young peer-educators from 10 European countries, using their personal accounts (on different social media platforms) and their own search on different websites using Google search engine, during a period of one year (September 2020 – September 2021) and it contains data gathered by young people of different nationalities of the adverse impact of hate speech on Roma and of the importance to report antigypsyist online hate speech. Based on the national reports, a cross-country analysis is presented, in an exhaustive manner, as the detailed situation is described and published in the national reports.
Main findings – the report is a synthesis of the national reports realized by the 9 partners involved in the project and it includes:
- A brief summary of the main findings
- An overview of the antigypsist online hate speech detected
- A deeper perspective of online discourse and hate narratives
- Personal insights: the peer-educators and young Roma perspectives during the monitoring activity
- A set of recommendations based on the findings and of the conclusions reached from the national reports.
The entire report can be consulted here.