Electronic hate mongering is on the increase, according to the US Anti-Defamation League, which this week released a report claming that anti-semitists and Holocaust deniers have shifted their propoganda campaigns to cyberspace.
The League?s annual report showed that while traditional forms of anti-semitic activity fell last year, Internet has provided an effective alternative channel.
At the release of the report in New York on Wednesday, ADL national director Abraham Foxman warned: "Electronic hate is the dark side of technology and the anti-semites have particularly taken to the medium."
The ADL report highlights a practice by many extremist groups to send out anonymous mass emailings carrying their doctrines. It notes: "What was local is now global. Bigots can spew out their hatred without ever running the risk of being identified."
Barbara Bergen, ADL director, said: "Do a search some time on the word holocaust and you?ll find many sites and references to holocaust deniers. That is a special concern because we have a whole generation which was not alive when this happened.
But she added that the ADL did not want to bundled with pressure groups calling for stricter censorship of the Internet, but wanted to publicise the existence of the sites in order to alert parents to them. "The antidote to bad speech is good speech," she said.
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