Front Burner

How far right influencers thrive on YouTube

The Christchurch mosque shooter formed his radical views online. Today, an examination of how far right communities spread their toxic messages on the Internet and how they use YouTube to do it.
CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND - MARCH 21: A policeman places flowers on the gates of Al Noor mosque on March 21, 2019 in Christchurch, New Zealand. 50 people were killed, and dozens are still injured in hospital after a gunman opened fire on two Christchurch mosques on Friday, 15 March. The accused attacker, 28-year-old Australian, Brenton Tarrant, has been charged with murder and remanded in custody until April 5. The attack is the worst mass shooting in New Zealand's history. (Carl Court/Getty Images)

It's been a week now since 50 people were killed in attacks on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. And since then a lot has been said about how the white supremacist terrorist who carried out those murders was a product of the Internet. Today we dig a bit deeper into that topic. How do people become radicalized online? Who does someone on the far right find community with? How have far right figures adapted the language and tools of social media influencers, to spread their toxic ideas? And what role does YouTube play? Our guides are Becca Lewis, a researcher who focuses on online political subcultures, and Zeynep Tufekci, a writer who covers the Internet, technology, politics and society.

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