New York Governor Kathy Hochul reprimanded social media company executives on Sunday about how radicalization can spread online and lead to bodily harm after a mass shooting in Buffalo.
The white gunman killed 10 people Saturday at a convenience store in a predominantly black neighborhood in Buffalo, and Ms. Hochul told ABC she would investigate what law enforcement and social media companies knew about the gunman’s behavior prior to the deadly attack.
The gunman published a manifesto online embracing white supremacist ideas, according to reports.
“The CEOs of those companies need to be held accountable and assuring all of us that they are taking every human step possible to monitor this information, how these perverted ideas are fermenting on social media,” Ms. Hochul told ‘This Week.’ “It’s spreading like a virus now, the manifestations of white supremacy.”
The 18-year-old gunman’s manifesto indicated that he learned and shared white supremacist ideas online during the coronavirus pandemic, according to NBC.
While the killer planned to broadcast the deadly attack, video streaming service Twitch told CNN it deleted the shooter’s video within two minutes of the violence starting.
When asked by ABC’s George Stephanopoulos how to prevent hate from spreading digitally, Ms Hochul replied that the social media companies were not monitoring enough.
“These companies have a lot of money, they have resources, they have technology,” she said. “Keywords appear, they have to be identified, someone has to watch this and shut it down as soon as it appears. And other than that, I, we will protect the right to free speech, but there is a limit.”
Ms. Hochul said she did not view hate speech as protected speech.