Facebook bans boogaloo groups, but some smaller groups remain

Facebook bans boogaloo groups, but some smaller groups remain


A patch on a bulletproof vest recovered by the FBI during an investigation into a murder allegedly committed by a Boogaloo member. The patch contains an igloo and a Hawaiian-style print, both popular Boogaloo symbols (“big igloo” and “big Luau” sound like “Boogaloo”).

Federal Office for Investigations

Facebook has changed its stance on the Boogaloo movement. The social media company announced on Tuesday that it banned groups associated with the right-wing extremist movement, calling it a “dangerous organization”. Previously, Facebook said it would not remove such groups.

The company said it deleted a core set of 220 Facebook accounts, 95 accounts on Facebook’s own Instagram, 28 pages and 106 groups affiliated with the Boogaloo movement. In addition, another 400 groups and 100 pages that contained similar content but were managed by accounts outside the Boogaloo core network were removed.

“To make Facebook as inhospitable as possible for this violent US anti-government network, we have strategically interrupted its presence,” Facebook wrote in a blog post. “This is the final step in our commitment to prohibit people who proclaim a violent mission from using our platform.”

Facebook says it does not allow hate speech, racism, harassment, white nationalist or white separatist content on its website, and does not remove posts or comments that violate these guidelines. But a lot still misses Facebook’s censors, including one alleged murder planned by Boogaloo members on its platform and countless groups is dedicated to the dissemination of racist memes and misinformation.

In the past week, Facebook has come under increasing pressure to improve the police and remove such content entirely. A group of civil rights organizations launched an ad boycott against the company, called “Stop Hate for Profit”. The social network earns almost all of its money from ads and has generated more than $ 70 billion in advertising revenue last year. Over 100 brands have joined the boycott, including major ones like Clorox, Unilever, Verizon, Adidas, Ford, Denny’s, Volkswagen, Microsoft, the North Face, Patagonia, Chobani and others.

The boycott comes after the FBI has discovered two suspected Boogaloo members who have been reported to have discovered conspired in a Facebook group to murder federal security forces in Oakland, California. The attack is said to have been coordinated during the May 29 protests against police violence. One security guard was killed and another seriously injured.

The loosely knitted Boogaloo movement is strongly against law enforcement. The name comes from the cult film Breakin ‘2: Electric Boogaloo from 1984 and is ironically used to indicate a second civil war. Some members continue to focus on anti-government activities and rhetoric, while others slide into white supremacist or neo-Nazi ideologies. Several Boogaloo members have taken their activities offline in the past few months and have been arrested for various crimes, including the building of pipe bombs and a plot to commit terrorism.

After the Oakland murder, Facebook said it would still Allow Boogaloo groups to stay active on their platform. It said it stopped recommending boogaloo groups via its sidebar algorithm earlier this month and long removed content that represented armed violence.

“This network appears to be located in different locations in the United States, and the people in this network work together on our platform,” wrote Facebook in his blog post on Tuesday. “It actively promotes violence against civilians, law enforcement agencies, and government officials and institutions.”

Although Facebook has now banned Boogaloo groups from its website, some offshoot groups still seem to be active. JJ MacNab of the George Washington University Extremism Program, which deals with anti-government extremist organizations, said on Twitter that she had found several “igloo” groups on the website. Igloo is a reference to Boogaloo.

“‘Big Igloo Bois: You wanted a group, so fuck it, you’re going’ is gone. It was a private group with more than 34,000 members,” MacNab tweeted on Tuesday. “Smaller igloo groups still exist.”

These groups include “Igloo of the Great Luau”, “Igloo Association of the Western States” and “Captain Ips Great Igloo Cruise”. MacNab found that some of these accounts had created backup plans. Members expected to be closed and therefore announced that alternative sites could join.

MacNab did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Facebook implied that removing all Boogaloo accounts, pages, and groups would likely be a slap in the mouth. The company said it will try to recognize member attempts to return to the platform and study new languages ​​and symbols that Boogaloo members can use to disguise their affiliation.

“We expect controversial behavior from this network, including people who are trying to use our platform again and adopt new terminology,” wrote Facebook in his blog post. “As long as violent movements take place in the physical world, they will try to use digital platforms.”

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