christchurch shooting bestgore
The Christchurch Shooting on BestGore: Dealing with Online Content of Extremist Violence
As a website operator, one of the most challenging issues to address is the presence of extremist or violent content. In the aftermath of the Christchurch shooting on March 15, 2019, BestGore was one of the websites that faced intense scrutiny for hosting footage of the attack. This article will explore the complexities of dealing with online content of violent events and the ethical considerations for website policy and practice.
The Rise of Extreme Content on the Internet
The past decade has seen a marked increase in freely accessible online content that is violent, extreme or harmful in nature. BestGore is one of many websites that offer a platform for unfiltered, uncensored material that traditional media may not report or publish. These sites can cater to audiences who consume graphic or shocking content, and users who engage in the creation or sharing of this material.
However, the availability of such content has raised concerns about the ethical responsibilities of website operators. Freedom of speech and expression are fundamental rights, but they must be balanced against the risks of harm, exploitation, and offense to individuals and communities. BestGore, for example, argues that it provides “uncensored truth” and as long as the content is legal, it has the right to publish it.
The Impact of Online Extreme Content
The Christchurch shooting was a horrific act of violence that claimed the lives of 51 people and injured dozens more. The live-streamed footage of the attack, which was shared widely on social media, has been deemed as propaganda for extremist ideologies and a tool for inciting violence. The presence of such material online can have a profound impact on individuals and communities, including trauma, desensitization, and normalization of violence.
As a website operator, one must be mindful of the role of online content in shaping attitudes and behaviors. Blurring the lines between reality and fiction or presenting violence as entertainment is an irresponsible and unethical practice. BestGore has stated that it does not encourage violence and seeks to expose “moral and ethical issues that society tends to ignore.” However, it remains to be seen whether their content contributes to social dialogue or perpetuates destructive forces.
The Dilemma of Regulating Extreme Content
The issue of regulating online content is a notoriously difficult one. When it comes to violent or extremist material, the debate is even more complex. On the one hand, there is a responsibility to protect individuals and promote social cohesion. On the other hand, there is a need to safeguard free speech and avoid the slippery slope of censorship.
BestGore, like many other websites, claims to have a set of guidelines in place to determine what content is permissible. For example, they state that they do not allow videos that show real sexual abuse or child pornography. However, the question remains as to whether their policies are adequately enforced, and whether they represent a genuine attempt to act in ethical and responsible ways.
The Christchurch shooting was a difficult moment for website operators, in particular those who host extremist content. It has brought into sharp focus the need to address the ethical dilemmas of regulating online extreme content. As a website operator, it is important to understand the potential impact of violent or harmful material and to balance free speech with social responsibility. Ultimately, the future of online content will depend on the ability to create safe, respectful and ethical digital environments.