Middle East Forum director Gregg Roman appeared on WHDT World News on May 9 to discuss social media and Islamic radicalization. See video at right.
Since the middle of 2015, Twitter said that it has suspended about 125,000 accounts; many of those supported ISIS. Do you think ISIS would exist if social media did not?
I think it might exist on a lesser scale, but the ability of ISIS to go beyond the traditional terror communication waves, like radio, video, and activity on websites not being communicated across social media, has really shown a new terror cyber domain.
Twitter may be proud of the fact that it was able to shut down 125,000 accounts, but I'm sure there were 125,000 more accounts that were set up to replace those.
What we really have to look at when it comes to social media companies is their responsibility not just to close accounts after they've been set up, but to be able to enact algorithms that look for specific IP addresses, that look for virtual private networks, and that look for certain keywords in communications – having them act proactively instead of reactively.