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Zuckerberg’s sister: Banning Holocaust deniers won’t ‘make them go away'

Zuckerberg’s sister: Banning Holocaust deniers won’t ‘make them go away'
© Greg Nash

The sister of Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergHillicon Valley: Russia-linked hackers hit Eastern European companies | Twitter shares data on influence campaigns | Dems blast Trump over China interference claims | Saudi crisis tests Silicon Valley | Apple to let customers download their data Public funds support proposal to remove Zuckerberg as Facebook chairman Obama responds to several excuses people give for not voting in new video MORE said that banning Holocaust deniers from social media won’t “make them go away” after the Facebook CEO said the deniers shouldn’t be removed from the site if they are not “intentionally getting it wrong.”

Randi Zuckerberg said in a statement to CNN on Thursday that her brother "could have chosen his words differently," but that she supported him "navigating this incredibly difficult new world where the notion of free speech is constantly changing."

Randi Zuckerberg, who has worked with Jewish groups and previously worked for Facebook, said she “felt a responsibility to weigh in” after the founder’s comments.

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"Unfortunately, when we give a voice to everyone, we give it to people who use that voice for good and to people who abuse that voice," she wrote. "Organizations doing impactful work now have more powerful tools than ever before, yet the nasty dark underbelly that exists right beneath the surface has access to those exact same tools."

"While it can be appalling to see what some people say, I don't think living in a sterile, Stepford-like online community where we simply press the delete button on the ugly reality of how people feel is helpful either," she added.

Randi Zuckerberg called for a national conversation about Holocaust deniers and whether they should be given the opportunity to amplify their cause at all.

She also said that users should hold tech leaders and elected officials accountable to "keep working with as much transparency as possible to keep revisiting these policies and to be ready to act swiftly at the fine line where speech turns to action."

“I don't want to live in a world where Holocaust deniers are given a voice and I think we absolutely need to be having a debate at a national level on whether they deserve a place on any platform at all,” Randi Zuckerberg said. “At the same time, I also don't want to live in a world where tech companies get to decide who has the right to speech and get to police content in a way that is different from what our legal system dictates.”

Mark Zuckerberg faced criticism this week after he said during an interview with Recode that while he found Holocaust deniers “deeply offensive,” he doesn’t “believe that our platform should take that down because I think there are things that different people get wrong — I don’t think that they’re intentionally getting it wrong.”

He later said that he “absolutely didn’t intend to defend the intent of people who deny that,” referring to the Holocaust.