The spate of terrorist activities around the world that caused a large number of civilian deaths has been brought to the attention of Internet companies. While the Internet has become a valuable vehicle for terrorist groups to advance their extremist cause, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Microsoft now unite to filter out suspected propagandist contents from their platforms.

Internet firms' alliance

The Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism has been announced Monday with founding members Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Microsoft in hopes to make their "hosted consumer services hostile to terrorists and violent extremists".

The alliance seeks to fulfill its goal to counter radical movements across the globe using their platforms to spread it. However, the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism's scope of work will change over time to adjust to the evolving strategies of the terrorists and extremists.

Three-point agenda

In its blog post published Monday, the alliance has stressed out three points as the center of its attention at this time.

On the first point, the companies seek to work closely together in the exchange of best practices relating to content detection and classification techniques through machine learning. Standard transparency reporting methods will be implemented in the removal of terrorist contents.

On the second point, the alliance has given emphasis on research as a basis for future technical and policy decisions with regards to the deletion of terrorist contents.

On the third point, the importance of shared learning is underscored. Thus, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Microsoft is looking forward to working with counter-terrorism experts—governments, civil society groups, academics, and other firms—for the advancement of this cause.

The Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism has forged a joint partnership with the United Nations Security Council Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate (U.N. CTED) and the ICT4Peace Initiative. This joint effort aims to involve smaller companies in the process, develop best practices, and strengthen existing counter-speech initiatives.