MDI and Facebook Joined Forces for “Game of Trolls”

Published: 30 May 2018

Region: Europe

Screen_Shot_2018-06-05_at_12.11.23What do you do when you see someone posting horrible and offensive comments and posts online? You know you should respond, but how do you do that? This is a question the new “Game of Trolls”  campaign led by the Media Diversity Institute (MDI) is trying to answer. “Game of Trolls” was developed by the MDI’s Get the Trolls Out (GTTO)  project and as part of Create against Hate, a Facebook-led initiative connecting NGO’s with creative industry professionals, in order to tackle online hate and extremism.

All the Create against Hate campaigns including MDI’s “Game of Trolls” were exhibited to the public in the Zari Gallery in London on 23 May and they remain available to be viewed online.

“Every time I talk to people about challenging racists, bigots and trolls on social media platforms, I get the same responses.  ‘Yes, but how?’ and ‘They’re just going to start harassing me’ are the most common ones,” says Nika Jelendorf, the GTTO social media campaigner. “So we’ve decided to help people out by bridging the gap between knowing you should act and knowing how to act”, says Nika.

Game_of_TrollsIn order to achieve that goal, MDI is running a series of short videos on their social media platforms, which contain examples of hate speech and give suggestions on how to answer them. We’re also asking people to alert us when they encounter hate speech using the hashtag #TrollWithLove and testing how people respond when they are challenged on their hate in a variety of ways.

As part of the GTTO project, MDI has been running a series of instructional videos on social media networks, showing people examples hateful comments and how to respond to them.

The Get the Trolls Out project aims to combat discrimination and intolerance based on religious grounds in Europe. Seven European partners from Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary and the United Kingdom are collaborating on the project. Together they monitor the media, debunk and respond to antisemitic, Islamophobic, and anti-Christian reporting as well as reporting hate incidents to social media platforms. With traditional media moving more and more towards engaging their audiences on their social media profiles, it is becoming increasingly clear that hateful comments on articles, regardless of their authors intention to either promote diversity or push a hateful agenda, are a big part of the problem.

Some CSOs that took part in the Facebook-led initiative are British Future, Community Security Trust, Stand up! Education against discrimination, The Great Get Together, The Muju Crew and Small Steps.