Man 'paints' offensive tweets outside Twitter's Hamburg office

  • Man 'paints' offensive tweets outside Twitter's Hamburg office

Man 'paints' offensive tweets outside Twitter's Hamburg office

Shahak Shapira painted 30 anti-Semitic, homophobic, Islamophobic, and racist tweets outside the company's German headquarters in Hamburg. Worthy of commendation is Facebook, which was substantially more successful in quashing hate speech; of the 150 comments that Shapira reported to Mark Zuckerberg's brainchild over the same six month period, 80% were removed within one to three days.

The posts included tweets like "Lets gas some Jews together" and "hang these lowlifes from the nearest street post", as well as calls for violence against Muslims, gays, women and people of color.

"I haven't received a single mail telling me the tweet was actually removed", said Mr Shapira, adding that "occasionally, Twitter would remove a tweet without letting me know - although they promise to inform you as soon as your case is processed which makes it impossible for me to say where my reports ended up". "And tomorrow morning, when the Twitter people arrive at the office, they'll have to look at all the lovely tweets that their company loves to ignore to much".

A comedian who claimed Twitter failed to reply to his requests to review hateful tweets has a strong message for the company.

"I was hoping I could have real numbers at the end of this, but I have none because Twitter is so not transparent about it", he said.

"It angers me that most people don't revolt against", the unnamed man says. Recently, the law has been used to battle hate speech against migrants. It also found that Twitter deleted just 1 percent of offending posts over the time studied. The EU study noted that all the companies in question had improved their response rate.

Shapira is working to spread that message using the hashtag #HeyTwitter. Back in January, the artist simultaneously lampooned and derided the trend for taking selfies with Holocaust memorials on his website Yolocaust, stripping away background images and replacing them with scenes from concentration camps. Some of the spray-painted tweets - the ones on the pavement right outside the office building - were cleaned up by the maintenance staff, while the rest remained.

"If Twitter forces me to see these things, then they'll have to see them too", said Shapira in the video.