SWC’s 2022 Digital Hate Report Exposes Widespread Russian Disinformation

May 2, 2022

Grades threats from social media and gaming platforms

On April 28th, the Simon Wiesenthal Center released its 2022 annual Digital Terrorism and Hate Report at a press conference at New York City Hall hosted by New York City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams and seven other influential Council leaders who represent the Big Apple's diverse ethnic communities—each of whom expressed the need for unity in the struggle against the rising tide of hate.

New York City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams remarked “Across the country and in our city, communities have sadly witnessed and experienced the alarming uptick in hate crimes and violence.”

The Council Speaker continued “when hate content is disseminated and allowed to spread in mainstream online platforms, it irresponsibly allows for hate to grow and turn into potential violent action. The release of the 27th annual Digital Terrorism Report demonstrates that hate spreads online in social media and gaming platforms, which often reaches and influences our young people. We must continue to root out hate in all of its forms to make our communities safer. I thank Rabbi Cooper and the Simon Wiesenthal Center for their work to shine a light on digital hate, and I look forward to continued partnerships with our diverse communities to support holistic safety solutions.”

Other Council Members present included:

  1.   CM Eric Dinowitz, Chair, Jewish Caucus
  2.   CM Jennifer Gutiérrez– Chair, Committee on Technology
  3.   CM Mercedes Narcisse, Member, Black, Latino and Asian Caucus
  4.   CM Linda Lee, Vice Cor Chair, Black, Latino and Asian Caucus
  5.   CM Nantasha Williams, Chair, Committee on Civil and Human Rights
  6.   CM Lincoln Restler, Co-Chair, Progressive Caucus
  7.   CM Ari Kagan, Member, Jewish Caucus

All members present emphasized the need for unity in the struggle against bigotry in all of its forms including against Asian Americans, African American, Latina, LGBTQ, and Jewish communities.
Rabbi Abraham Cooper, Associate Dean and Director of Global Social Action Agenda for the Simon Wiesenthal Center, founded the Digital Terrorism and Hate project 27 years ago. In his remarks, Rabbi Cooper referenced the insights of the late Nazi Hunter Simon Wiesenthal who was asked if it the Holocaust can happen again. Mr. Wiesenthal remarked that “If you have hate, plus a crisis, plus technology-- anything is possible.”

Rabbi Cooper reflected that “this statement was made over four decades ago, well before the internet and cellphones and social media were even conceived of. The social media giants of Silicon Valley clearly have not done enough to degrade the marketing capabilities of digital pariahs, and what we are looking at this year is a tragic and frightening fulfillment of Mr. Wiesenthal’s prediction.”

SWC’s 2022 Digital Hate Report exposes widespread Russian disinformation and fake news sites to justify and deflect attention away from the war crimes and crimes against humanity in Ukraine, conspiracy theories, virulent anti-Semitic, racist, and xenophobic hate messaging, the targeting of LGBTQ+ and minority communities, and the infiltration of children’s gaming platforms by neo-Nazis and other extremists.

Social media and gaming platforms have emerged as critical global vehicles for the marketing and distribution of violent hatred and terror recruitment. The SWC annual report card is a necessary tool to report and alert the public, from law enforcement to parents about the scope of pernicious messages targeting our children whose lives increasingly revolve around social media.

The report card grades powerful platforms on how well they degrade the marketing capability of bigots as well as challenges platforms that willfully facilitate anti-Semitism, racism, xenophobia, stereotyping, and bullying.

Rick Eaton, SWC’s Director of Research and author of the 2022 report, noted that the New York City Subway shooter posted dozens of hate filled videos accruing over 180,000 views across social media.

Eaton remarked that “the 2022 report highlights the pervasiveness of extremist content circulating on both mainstream and alternative platforms, yet the purveyors of hate are allowed a forum to post, incite, and recruit with impunity.”

The annual report provides over 750 current examples from the past year of what is transpiring on these platforms reinforcing the seriousness of this issue and the need for public officials and community leaders to call such companies to task.

To view the full report please visit

To view official event photos please visit

To watch a recording of the official live stream please visit

For more information about Simon Wiesenthal Center’s 2022 Digital Terrorism and Hate Report and their renowned Tools for Tolerance® for Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice program please contact Michele Alkin, malkin@wiesenthal.com or Ezra Weinberger, Eweinberger@rubensteinpr.com

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