WJC Institute for Technology and Human Rights - World Jewish Congress

WJC Institute for Technology and

Human Rights

Advancing Justice: Harnessing Technology with Jewish Principles

The World Jewish Congress Institute for Technology and Human Rights is dedicated to addressing the rise of online hate, enhancing human rights, and harnessing technology for positive societal impact. Drawing on extensive experience and significant achievements, the Institute aims to unify efforts within Jewish communities and influence broader societal and technological spheres. 

Rooted in core Jewish values and community experiences, the Institute is adept at navigating the intersection of technology and human rights. It focuses on combating online hatred,  antisemitism, extremism, and disinformation, as well as tackling broader ethical challenges posed by rapid technological advancements. The Institute seeks to be a hub of innovation, dialogue, and action, ensuring Jewish perspectives contribute meaningfully to shaping the future of technology and its impact on society. 

Through advocacy and successful policy campaigns on platforms like Meta and TikTok, the WJC has made significant strides in safeguarding human dignity online, showcasing its commitment to eradicating digital hate and bigotry. The Institute aspires to serve as a beacon, guiding the tech industry, regulatory bodies, and digital citizens towards an environment where ethical tech use flourishes. 

What We Do

Our mission focuses on education, communication, policy formulation, and the sharing of best practices within the digital world world. By engaging with governments, international bodies, and tech companies, the Institute advocates for policies that ensure digital safety and human rights, fostering an inclusive and respectful digital environment for all.

Working with our Jewish Communities

TecHRI is committed to empowering Jewish communities globally by providing essential tools and knowledge to effectively counter online antisemitism. Through facilitating global networks, organizing webinars, workshops, and collaborative projects, the Institute aims to enhance community resilience and digital literacy, and strengthen Jewish communities in advocating for a safer online environment.

Key initiatives include the establishment of our Online Hate Working Group, serving as a dynamic forum for strategy development against online antisemitism, and sharing of knowledge and best practices. We also offer special avenues for our communities and members to flag antisemitic content they encounter online to the WJC to further report to the internet platforms, and train community members to become trusted flaggers.

Engagement with Tech Companies

The expansive and often unregulated realms of digital platforms have become fertile grounds for the propagation of hate speech and antisemitic rhetoric. The anonymity and global reach amplify these challenges, necessitating strategic responses to protect Jewish individuals and communities from online vitriol.  

WJC works closely with technology companies to ensure their policies are continuously adapting to the challenges of online hate and antisemitism, and have proper enforcement mechanisms in place. WJC also submits trend reports and position papers to technology companies and enforcement bodies. 

Through dialogue and collaboration, the Institute advocates for the use of technologies and algorithms to detect and mitigate hate speech, while also promoting positive content that educates and builds bridges among diverse online communities. Our work extends beyond the regular social media companies, for example, working with Amazon to remove hundreds of Holocaust-denying titles from its store.  

Report 
Generation

In a bid to stay ahead of the evolving landscape of online hate, the Institute commissions research studies, white papers, and policy analyses in collaboration with intergovernmental bodies, leading academics, and research institutions. These efforts aim to deepen the understanding of antisemitism’s manifestations online and craft evidence-based strategies for its eradication. 

WJC’s first report on the issue was published in 2017 and covered antisemitism on social media. Since then, we have published reports on a variety of topics and platforms such as the spread of conspiracy theories online; the use of social media by terrorist groups such as Hamas; the bias on Wikipedia; Holocaust denial and distortion online, and the Holocaust and AI ethics.  

Holocaust Remembrance and Education in the Digital Sphere

In today's fast-paced world, interwoven with various technological tools and networks, we have unprecedented access to survivors' testimonies and numerous online resources about the Holocaust. With the number of Holocaust survivors declining, and the threat of misinformation and narratives that support Holocaust denial or distort the reality of the Shoah increasing, it is crucial to preserve the truth about the Holocaust in the online sphere, leveraging rapidly developing technology for remembrance and education, while at the same time, closely monitoring content in order to thwart the spread of false claims. 

The WJC The Institute collaborates with tech platforms, online sale entities, social media sites and similar to improve Holocaust remembrance strategies and education while reducing the spread of Holocaust Denial and Distortion.  

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Platform Strategy
Meta
TikTok
YouTube
Meta

The World Jewish Congress has partnered with Meta in order to combat Holocaust denial and antisemitism through specific tailor-made responses developed in partnership with the platform. For example, Facebook users searching for certain keywords are being redirected to AboutHolocaust.org, a comprehensive resource developed by UNESCO and WJC.

TikTok

Users searching for Holocaust-related terms are directed to AboutHolocaust.org, a comprehensive educational resource developed by WJC and UNESCO. The WJC is also an approved TikTok partner and user of the company’s Safety Enforcement Tool.

YouTube

The World Jewish Congress is part of YouTube's Trusted Flagger program and also utilizes YouTube to extend its educational campaigns.

Who Are We?

Yfat Barak-Cheney

Yfat Barak-Cheney is the WJC's Director of International Affairs and Director of WJC's Institute for Technology and Human Rights. Through her work, Yfat engages with stakeholders such as governments, international organizations, civil society and tech companies on issues of hate speech and antisemitism online, Holocaust Denial and Distortion online, using technology for education and more. Yfat earned an LL.M in International Legal Studies from New York University where she was a Transitional Justice Scholar and an International Law and Human Rights Fellow. She also holds an LL.M (with honors) from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where she also received her L.L.B and a B.A in International Relations, receiving an award for outstanding international law student.

Marija Ljubinkovic

Marija Ljubinkovic is a criminologist, currently working as Project Manager at the WJC's Institute for Technology and Human Rights. She started her career at WJC in 2022 and effectively supported the implementation of two research-oriented project interventions on tackling contemporary extremism and antisemitism.

Hannah Maman

Hannah Maman is currently working as an Associate at the World Jewish Congress in the Institute of Technology and Human Rights. She is actively involved in projects related to monitoring hate speech, including online hate speech and hate crimes, focusing on the development and implementation of tools to effectively track and report antisemitic content.

Advisory Council

Adam Ma'anit (Jewish Community Representative)

Adam Ma’anit is Digital and Communications Officer for the Board of Deputies and is also currently serving as Interfaith and Social Action Manager.

Dr. Ahmed Shaheed

Ahmed is Professor of International Human Rights Law in the School of Law and Human Rights Centre at the University of Essex. He directs the Human Rights Centre's Religion and Equality Project, Project on Mobilising A Global Alliance to Counter islamophobia, and the Essex Summer School on Human Rights Research and Practice. He serves as an adviser on 'hate speech' to the United Nations Office on Genocide Prevention and is a member of the Panel of Experts on Freedom of Religion or Belief convened by the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe. He served as the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief from 2016 to 2022 having previously served as the UN Special Rapporteur on human rights in Iran from 2011 to 2016. 

Dr. Gunther Jikeli

Günther Jikeli, a historian and sociologist of modern Europe, holds the Erna B. Rosenfeld Professorship at IU’s Institute for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism at the Borns Jewish Studies Program. He is also an associate professor in Germanic Studies and Jewish Studies at IU and leads the research lab Social Media & Hate. In 2013, he was awarded the Raoul Wallenberg Prize in Human Rights and Holocaust Studies by the International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation and Tel Aviv University. His latest book, “The Return of Religious Antisemitism?” (ed.) was published in 2021. In 2019, he published (with Olaf Glockner) “Das neue Unbehagen. Antisemitismus in Deutschland heute” (“The New Unease. Antisemitism in Germany Today”), and in 2015, he published the monograph “European Muslim Antisemitism” with IU Press.

Inbal Goldberger

Inbal Goldberger serves as the VP of Trust & Safety at ActiveFence, where she engages with the wider Trust & Safety community and spearheads cross-industry initiatives. With a background as a military intelligence officer, specializing in counter-terrorism, Inbal previously contributed to the field of cybersecurity before embarking on her journey with Google Trust & Safety. Inbal is a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Coalition for Digital Safety, holds a board position at Marketplace Risk, serves as a core leader of the Atlantic Council’s Task Force for a Trustworthy Future Web, and participates as a steering committee member of the Trust & Safety Forum.

Monika Hübscher

Monika Hübscher is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Haifa, Israel, and a research assistant at the University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany. Her research focuses on antisemitism on social media, social media literacy against antisemitism, and antisemitism in Germany. She is co-editor of "Antisemitism on Social Media" (2022) and has lectured extensively on the subject, including to educational multipliers, social media representatives, policy makers and government officials in several countries. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the Center for Combating Antisemitism and Intolerance (Serbia) and of the Board of Scholars of Facing History and Ourselves.

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