Combating Hate Speech through the Arts
The South Sudan focused community peacebuilding initiative
#defyhatenow is proud to present DEFY – a short film on the perils of social media misuse.
DEFY tells the fictional story of the fictional senior politician Honourable David’s newfound passion for social media and the risks that come with using these platforms to spread propaganda and rumours.
The film follows the fate of the young internet entrepreneur ‘Software’ and his colleagues who become entangled in a dangerous online conflict with Honourable David as he hires a young female manager for his social media page. After Hon. David posts inflammatory views on his Facebook page he ends up risking his life and that of the young woman.
DEFY shows an extreme yet potential example of how the misuse of social media can go spectacularly awry, indicating that hate speech has no place in our political life, our neighbourhoods and workplaces. The film aims to raise awareness and facilitate dialogue about how we can work together in our communities to address these risks and mitigate further incitement to violence arising through online hate speech.
South Sudan context
The people of South Sudan, the world’s youngest nation, share the rest of the world’s interest in social media, but with one difference: Some South Sudanese within the country and in the diaspora have directed digital tools to incite violence along ethnic lines in the nation’s three-and-a-half-year-old civil war by posting hate speech that may have in one way or another fueled the conflict.
#defyhatenow responds to create awareness of the impact of hate speech in fueling conflict and how social media can be used in a constructive and peace-building manner.