“It’s a responsibility to me that this kind of brutality, this execution of innocent humans, can be broadcast live on social media platforms and not be taken down in a second,” New York Governor Kathy said. Kathy Hochul Say After the Buffalo shooting. Four days later, the state’s attorney general, Letitia James, announced that she had opened an investigation into the role the platforms played.
Facebook points to its rules and policies against hateful content. In a statement, a spokeswoman said the platform detected more than 96 percent of content related to hate groups prior to reporting. Twitter declined to comment. Some social media posts on Facebook, Twitter and Reddit that The New York Times discovered through reverse image searches were removed; some accounts that shared images were suspended.
Man accused of murder, 18-year-old Payton Gendron, has detailed his attack on Discord, a chat app that emerged from the video game world in 2015 and is on Amazon-owned Twitch live on. The company managed to take down his video within two minutes, but many of the sources of disinformation he cited are still online even now.
His dissertation records a chilling glimpse into how he prepared for deadly online attacks, picking weapons and tactical skills, and taking inspiration from other racists and previous attacks, which he largely modeled on his own. Taken together, the content forms a distorted and racist view of reality. The Gunners see these ideas as an alternative to mainstream opinion.
“How do you prevent shooters like me?” he wrote on Discord in April, more than a month before the shooting. “The only way is to stop them from learning the truth.”
His writings detail the websites that inspired him. Much of the information he has pieced together in his writings involves links or images he has handpicked to match his racist views and reflect the online life he has lived.
By his own account, the young man’s radicalization began shortly after the Covid-19 pandemic began, when he, like millions of other Americans, was largely confined to his home. He described getting his news mostly from Reddit before joining the online message board 4chan. He focused on guns and the outdoors, then found another devoted to politics, eventually settling in a place that allowed racist and extremist disinformation to mingle.