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Tuesday, July 19, 2016 - 14:15
Facebook removes right-wing Dutch group's account
The administrators of right-wing group Nederland mijn Vaderland - Netherlands my Fatherland in English - were surprised to find that their account was removed on Facebook on Saturday. On the social media site they were met with a red beam and the message that their page does not comply with Facebook's guidelines, NRC reports. With 252 thousand likes, Nederland mijn Vaderland (NmV) was the biggest Dutch "nationalist" community on Facebook. The administrators filed an objection, but according to NRC, expect little result. Administrator Thomas van Elst thinks that anti-racist groups calling for supporters to report pages like NmV for inappropriate content may be behind the page's removal, he said to the newspaper. Dutch moderators assess all reports of inappropriate content and then decide whether or not a post or a page needs to be removed. According to Van Elst, the idea behind NmV is "very simple". "We want to keep the Netherlands as it is." Topics regularly discussed on the page include immigration, asylum seekers, the European Union and Zwarte Piet. Van Elst feels that Facebook and other social media platforms play a "decisive roll" in the debate on such topics. "The moderators are so incredibly powerful. Do we want Facebook to be that powerful?" The administrator describes the fact that NvM no longer exists as "an injustice done to a quarter of a million Dutch". According to him NvM was a place for people who do not feel represented in the "mainstream media" to express their "nationalist sentiment". "That Facebook now censors us is a raw deal. Very bad."