21 Mar 2018

Online racism and hate speech reach new high in Austria

The annual report of the Viennese organization ZARA shows that the number of racist incidents has risen again in Austria. The increase is mostly due to a growing number of online incidents.

Christine Tragler
Christine Tragler Der Standard, Austria
Source: Der Standard
Online racism and hate speech reach new high in Austria - NewsMavens
Depressed young man. Reporters / STG/REPORTER

Why this story matters:

ZARA reported 1,162 documented incidents, more than ever before.

Online attacks mostly target Muslims and refugees. ZARA also noted a "conspicuous revival" of Nazi ideology: in 2017, there was a marked increase in displays of Nazi symbols and slogans. 

According to ZARA, we see a "basic racist consensus" appear online -- a concerning phenomenon to say the least. At this point, any self-respecting government would step in and clearly denounce racism and hate speech, but so far there is no official statement on the matter.

race, NeoNazis

Details from the story:

  • Since January 2000, ZARA has been running a counseling center in Vienna where victims and witnesses of racism can receive free advice.
  • In its annual "Racism Report" ZARA provides data on racist incidents in Austria. It is the only trustworthy souce of information on the matter.
  • The association documented and processed 1,162 racist incidents in 2017, an increase compared to 2016.
  • In 2017, online incidents accounted for 44% of all cases reported by ZARA.
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