Countering Hate Speech 2019 - Video lectures

This lecture series is presented by academics and practitioners and complemented by views of the public. Prior to your online group meeting each week, participants are expected to watch the week’s videos and then respond to at least one lecture with a comment, observation or question.  SUBMIT HERE >>>

Video lecture comments should be 1-2 paragraphs in length. Your response shouldn’t be a summary, but instead should demonstrate you grappling with the concepts, questions, and implications in the lecture. Feel free to include questions of your own that you would like to discuss further with your group

For details see the Assignment Manual here >>>

*Please note that the views presented in the video lectures are those of the individual speakers and do not represent those of Sharing Perspectives Foundation.


A weekly breakdown of topics


Week 1 – Setting the Scene
In the first week, you will be introduced to the concept of hate speech and how it is defined by various European human rights organizations such as the ‘Council of Europe’ or the ‘European Commission against Racism’. Additionally, you will take a look at the various forms of hate speech and how hate speech is being packed for a wider public using mixed-media channels.


Week 2 – Impact and Consequences of Hate Speech
What comes to your mind when you hear the term ‘hate speech’? Racism, discrimination, freedom of expression, political debate, identity, hate crime; these were the first that came to our mind. This week explores the place of hate speech in our current societies and how it intertwines with narratives of various crimes.


Week 3 – Human Rights Perspective on Hate Speech
In this week, we will explore what human rights are and how to apply a human rights perspective to cases of hate speech. How can the human rights framework help in understanding policy and regulations countering hate speech? And how can these perspectives be helpful to individuals in fighting against hate?


Week 4 – Countering Hate Speech or Censoring Freedom of Expression?
Regulating hate speech is often seen as a controversial issue by the advocates of freedom of speech. Policy, law, interventions and calling against hate speech can be used as censoring tool by advocates of authoritarianism. Is it possible to draw a line between the limits of both?


Week 5 – Countering Hate Speech: The Importance of Civil Society
We can conclude that hate speech manifest in many different ways and parts of our social life. So, what now? In this week, we explore strategies and tactics to respond and propose alternatives to hate speech. These will be grounded in a human rights framework and we will look at examples coming from various fields.

Week 5: Countering Hate Speech: The Importance Of Civil Society

Preparing to take action against hate speech

Hate speech is complex and there is no “one-fits-all” responses to the phenomenon. The action depends on the instance of hate speech, our relation to that instance, what we want to achieve with our intervention and what tools we have. In this video, Martin suggests steps to prepare to take action, and gives an overview of all the possibilities that exist to fight effectively against hate speech.
Watch Video

Interview with Gregor Theilmeier, #ichbinhier Initiative

In the past two decades, Internet has contributed to tighten the  relationship  among  individuals  and  groups  in  the  public  sphere.  For  example, the Internet has enabled global activism and cross-border co-operation. At the same time, the Internet and especially social media platforms have been used as spaces and tools of hate. Although there is no sound statistics of the phenomenon, social media platforms have recognized that hateful messages disseminated online are increasingly common. In this video, Gregor Theilmeier is describing an intiative directly responding to hate speech online.

Watch Video

Teaching Tolerance

Countering Online Hate Speech

Watch this video to learn about a hands-on approach to counter hate speech online.

Watch Video

Week 4: Countering Hate Speech or Censoring Freedom of Expression?

Misheel Enkh-Amgalan

Hate Speech versus Freedom of Expression

Freedom of expression is a fundamental right. The question to which extent free expression may be practised has been debated since it was mentioned in early human rights documents. Should we label some forms of hate speech as free expression? Or should we limit freedom of expression, in order to, for example, protect targets of hate speech? In this video, Misheel is helping us to explore these questions.

Watch Video

Nadine Strossen

Social Media and Hate Speech: Who Gets to Decide? 

Nadine Strossen, the former president of the ACLU, argues that censorship does more harm than good—especially when it comes to social media platforms. She defends that instead of censoring these discourses, social media should be used to identify these and counter them, allowing for the counterspeech to also be disseminated.

Watch Video

Jan Bruck

Is a new hate speech law killing German comedy? 

Germany is among the first countries in Europe that approved and amended a number of laws at the National level to regulate hate speech. A new law was passed by the Parliament at the end of June 2017 and came into force in early October. It is called “The Netzwerkdurchsetzungsgesetz” and this law aimed at combating agitation and fake messages (fake news) in social networks. The law has been controversial in Germany with some saying it could lead to inadvertent censorship or curtail free speech. This video is explaining the controversy taking the examples of comedians’ experiences.

Watch Video

Week 3: Human Rights Perspective on Hate Speech

Misheel Enkh-Amgalan

What are Human Rights?

Human Rights are often considered an abstract concept, yet they are about concrete life situations and they form the very basis on which the system has been built. But why are they important and relevant to hate speech? In this video, Misheel explores the definition and characteristics of Human Rights and why they are essential to fight against hate speech.


Watch Video

A Human Rights Approach to Hate Speech

Hate speech is a violation to human rights, and any response should not reproduce hate, discrimination or violence. But what is a human rights approach to tackling hate speech in practice? In this video, Martin is explaining what are the different questions you should ask yourself to ensure your action is rooted in human rights.
Watch Video

Misheel Enkh-Amgalan

The history and evolution of Human Rights

“Human rights are a Western creation”; “Respect of human rights is against my traditions and culture”; “Human rights violate national sovereignty” are some often heard objections whenever discussing Human Rights. In this video, Misheel is helping us to navigate the evolution of Human Rights and to understand how they are more complex than these objections may suggest.

Watch Video

Misheel Enkh-Amgalan

The Human Rights Protection System

How can we access Human Rights? And how can they be respected and implemented? Misheel explores with us the responsibilities of States in relation to human rights, the institutions ensuring that they are protected, and how Human Rights can be claimed.

Watch Video

Week 2: Impact and Consequences of Hate Speech

Misheel Enkh-Amgalan

Causes and consequences of Hate Speech?

Whatever the definition of hate speech is, this is not an abstract concept. Hate Speech has clear consequences on the everyday life of people, both on the individual and collective leel. But where does hate come from? In this video, Misheel explores the roots causes of hate speech and the multi-faceted impact it has in our society.

Watch Video

Nazila Ghanea

Hate Speech Beyond Borders

Nazila Ghanea talks about the different types of hate speech, defending that each type should be treated differently. She mentions discriminatory speech, hate speech and incitement to violence, focusing in the latter, especially on the danger of governments using it

Watch Video

Intersectionality in relation to hate speech

One is almost never solely privileged or marginalised. No person only belongs to  one  social  group  but  has  multiple  identity  affiliations  at the same time. For example, a gay Black man working in the care business may feel related to various social groups at the same time: man, black or African culture, LGBTQI+, and care workers. The privilege of a person can then be seen at the intersection of multiple identities: being  male  can  imply some benefits, while being gay may not. Our benefits are defined in relation to others. For example, one group is privileged, white people, while others are not, non-white people. In this video, Emilia Roig is explaining the concept of intersectionality in relation to hate speech.

Watch Video

Week 1: Setting the scene

Misheel Enkh-Amgalan

What is Hate Speech?

Hate speech is everywhere today: on the media, online, offline, in the streets and walls. Not a single day passes without us reading hateful comments on the latest music video on YouTube or hearing about the latest controversial Tweet of a politician. But what is really hate speech? How can we define it? In this video, Misheel is giving her first insights to help us to define the phenomenon.

Watch Video

Misheel Enkh-Amgalan

Forms of hate speech

Hate speech is often understood as only covering verbal expressions. But hate speech can take many forms. Sometimes it is very difficult to understand whether or not there is hate. Are some forms of hate worse than others? In this video, Misheel gives keys to assess and identify hate speech.

Watch Video

Misheel Enkh-Amgalan

What hate speech is, is controversial

Identifying the intention to do harm is one of the most important tasks to define hate speech. In many cases, however, the intention of the person can be unclear, or hate speech can be implicit, which makes it very difficult to detect. In this video, Misheel explores, how the vistim’s point of view can help in clarifying the intention of the ‘perpetrator’, while highlighting the limits it poses.

Watch Video