Facebook’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg, received a slew of antisemitic hatred online when he posted a picture of his dog, Beast, dressed in a kippah and tallit, Jewish garments, for the Jewish festival of Chanukah.
Many of the insults, directed at Zuckerberg and the State of Israel, are stereotypical blood libels, or centre around money. They include statements such as “F*** Isreal” [sic], “Go to hell, you and baby killers. A message to all Israeli [sic] (F*** you)”, “Mark for the sake of money you got crazy. For your advirtisement [sic] your fame you [sic] gone mad mark this is not fair you just throw urine on faces of of [sic] poor Palestinians you just need your lie fame [sic]”, “F*** your hanukah [sic] and fu k yoyr [sic] family”.
Many Jews feel the treatment Zuckerberg received reflects the antisemitic abuse they regularly encounter online.
Three days after receiving the tirade of antisemitism, Mark Zuckerberg updated his status with a post directed at Facebook’s Muslim users. He wrote that, “As a Jew, my parents taught me that we must stand up against attacks on all communities. I want to add my voice in support of Muslims in our community and around the world,” adding that Muslim users should expect Facebook to “fight to protect your rights and create a peaceful and safe environment for you.”
Zuckerberg has declined to extend this sentiment to Facebook’s Jewish users. In the United States of America, where Facebook is headquartered, antisemitic hate crime makes up, by far, the biggest percentage of religiously biased crime, with 59% of attacks targeted at Jews. The second largest group of victims of such hate crimes are Muslims, at 14%, followed by ‘other’ at 12% and Catholics at 6%.