Lawfare: Rushing to Judgment – Examining Government Mandated Content Moderation


On March 15, 2019, Brenton Tarrant logged on to 8chan and posted a message on a far-right thread to spread the word that he would be livestreaming an attack on “invaders.” Around 20 minutes later, Tarrant entered a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand, with an automatic weapon and a GoPro camera. Tarrant livestreamed on Facebook as he embarked on a killing spree resulting in the murder of 51 persons. Facebook removed the livestream 17 minutes later, after it had been viewed by more than 4,000 people. In the next 24 hours, Facebook removed the video 1.5 million times, of which 1.2 million were blocked at upload. Tarrant’s preparation and announcement made it clear that the attack’s horrific shock value was tailor-made for social media. 

Read the full blogpost by director Jacob Mchangama here.


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