University of Cyprus coordinates European programme for on line hate crime

University of Cyprus coordinates European programme for on line hate crime

The University of Cyprus is coordinating a programme funded by the European Union for tackling hate crime or speech online.

According to a University of Cyprus press release issued here today, the project CONTACT (Creating On line Network, monitoring Team and phone App to Counter hate crime Tactics) is a synergy between 5 Universities and 7 NGOs, from 10 different countries (UK, Denmark, Italy, Spain, Malta, Poland, Lithuania, Romania, Greece, Cyprus) with a total budget of €701,000 of which €560,880 were awarded by the European Commission.

Its aim, the press release says, “is to improve, encourage and analyse reporting of hate crime/speech online as well as raise awareness about what hate crime is, how to prevent it and how to report it.”

“Research shows that in the EU, hate crime is often not seen as a serious offence and there is therefore significant under-reporting of hate crime, definitions of what constitutes a hate crime differing from country to country,” it notes, adding that hate incidents, especially online, are increasing in most countries.

“This 2-year project, launched on 15th October, will combine research such as discourse analysis with practical activities, such as training and course development”, the press release continues.

It will also develop an online network, a monitoring team and a phone application which will have a direct link to the webpage to counter hate crime tactics.

The project is set to culminate in a major international conference to be held at the University of Cyprus in June 2017.