Project Objectives
  • Improved multilevel and multistakeholder cooperation on combating hate speech online; 
  • Strengthened responses to online hate speech through non-judiciary means, using counter and alternative narratives and education, and by referring to existing Council of Europe and European Union standards and policies.
How does the project work?

Through a set of activities which put forward networking, exchange of practices and peer-support between organisations, the project enables beneficiaries to shape their work based on their needs, whilst gaining new skills and contacts at the same time. This will take the form of the non-exhaustive list of initiatives as presented below:

  • Creation of an online knowledge hub, moderated by the Council of Europe, with a view to create and maintain a regular space for networking;
  • Various activities and trainings to support capacity buildings of beneficiaries to combat hate speech using counter-narratives, educational and awareness-raising actions;
  • An inclusive approach which helps addressing hate speech online and considering the intersectionality of needs and responses for hate speech and discrimination, which may include other services and action plans of the Council of Europe and the European Union.
Project Background

Supporting civil society organisations and other stakeholders to prevent and combat hate speech through the use of counter and alternative narratives is part of the Council of Europe approach since the Council of Europe’s No Hate Speech Movement Youth campaign (2012-2018) first worked on this issue. The Council of Europe’s work on combating hate speech covers monitoring, standard setting, and cooperation with key stakeholders in the member States to design tools and support actions using counter narrative, education and awareness raising initiatives. This project builds specifically on the toolkits and trainings designed to analyse hate speech, develop human rights-based narratives and communication strategies, developed within the framework of the EU-CoE co-funded project We CAN 4 Human Rights Speech.

Counter and alternative narratives are designed to combat hate speech by discrediting, deconstructing and condemning the narratives on which hate speech is based by reinforcing the values that hate speech threatens, such as human rights and democracy.

Whilst counter narratives push back on hateful messages as it de-constructs, discredits and condemns discriminatory hate messages, alternative narratives may not challenge or refer to the hate message directly, but instead attempt to influence public-social debates by strengthen positive, inclusive, and constructive ideas, hence changing the frame of the discussion poisoned by hate speech.

Project beneficiaries


 

Project at a glance

Duration: 16 months (September 2023 – December 2024)

Beneficiaries

  • Civil society organisations
  • Academia, think tanks, research groups
  • Public authorities and media
  • National equality bodies

Funding: European Union and Council of Europe

Budget: €223,000.00

Menno ETTEMA, Programme Manager

Stefan MANEVSKI, Senior Project Officer

Vasileios GIANNIAS, Project Assistant