Amnesty International’s Hate Barometer measuring peak of intolerance in Italy   Amnesty International’s Hate Barometer measuring peak of intolerance in Italy  

London 16 May 2019- The Hate Barometer is the tool Amnesty International Italy set to measure hate speech in the country over the EU elections. At ten days from the vote next 26 May, immigrants and Roma in particular are at the top of the chart with over 70%.

The online hate speech monitor is producing ongoing live figures and analyses on contents posted on Facebook and Twitter from Italian candidates to the EU Parliament and related replies from general account users.

On five main subjects: Roma, refugees, religious minorities, poverty and  women the wider public of voters follows politicians and candidates generating hate speech. The chart shows 76% of replies to politicians posts about Roma ethnic minority are negative contents as well as 73% on refugees, 72% on women, 71% on religious minorities and finally 68% of replies and comments on solidarity are negative.

The same five issues are the everyday’s home and front pages of media: the latest Tweet from the far right interior minister restated the ‘closed harbours’ propaganda after the rescue vessel of the ONG Sea Watch rescued 65 men and women from a sinking boat coming from Africa, while in the capital the Roma ethnic minority is persistently attacked by locals who want to exclude them from the right to access social housing. Still in Italy the violence on women is widespread and the most serious cases are the top of an iceberg of discrimination, as a result of all those factors, solidarity is the least value for the majority of those who interact with political propaganda and are subdued to media agenda setting. Monitoring social media under elections is of pivotal relevance to understand the results. Hate speech and surging of far right in the polls are directly proportional now that far right Lega reached 32,2% and government allies 5SM at 21.5%.