Library

Welcome to VOX-Pol’s online Library, a research and teaching resource, which collects in one place a large volume of publications related to various aspects of violent online political extremism.

Our searchable database contains material in a variety of different formats including downloadable PDFs, videos, and audio files comprising e-books, book chapters, journal articles, research reports, policy documents and reports, and theses.

All open access material collected in the Library is easy to download. Where the publications are only accessible through subscription, the Library will take you to the publisher’s page from where you can access the material.

We will continue to add more material as it becomes available with the aim of making it the most comprehensive online Library in this field.

If you have any material you think belongs in the Library—whether your own or another authors—please contact us at onlinelibrary@voxpol.eu and we will consider adding it to the Library. It is also our aim to make the Library a truly inclusive multilingual facility and we thus welcome contributions in all languages.

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TitleYearAuthorTypeLinks
VOX-Pol Summer School Public Lecture: Brown Moses
2014 Higgins, E. Lecture
VOX-Pol Summer School: 'Topics in Violence Online Political Extremism'
Dublin: July 3, 2014
Down the (White) Rabbit Hole The Extreme Right and Online Recommender Systems
2014 O’Callaghan D., Greene D., Conway M., Carthy J. and Cunningham P. VOX-Pol Publication
In addition to hosting user-generated video content, YouTube provides recommendation services, where sets of related and recommended videos are presented to users, based on factors such as co-visitation count and prior viewing history. This article is specifically concerned with extreme right (ER) video content, portions of which contravene hate laws and are thus illegal in certain countries, which are recommended by YouTube to some users. We develop a categorization of this content based on various schema found in a selection of academic literature on the ER, which is then used to demonstrate the political articulations of YouTube’s recommender system, particularly the narrowing of the range of content to which users are exposed and the potential impacts of this. For this purpose, we use two data sets of English and German language ER YouTube channels, along with channels suggested by YouTube’s related video service. A process is observable whereby users accessing an ER YouTube video are likely to be recommended further ER content, leading to immersion in an ideological bubble in just a few short clicks. The evidence presented in this article supports a shift of the almost exclusive focus on users as content creators and protagonists in extremist cyberspaces to also consider online platform providers as important actors in these same spaces.
CLC – Cyberterrorism Life Cycle Model
2014 Veerasamy, N. PhD Thesis
The rise of technology has brought with it many benefits but also the potential for great dangers. In particular, Information Communication Technology (ICT) is involved in many facets of life-influencing systems, which range from power plants to airports. Terrorists are now realising the great possibilities of interfering with critical infrastructure. Remote access, reduced costs, automation, replication, speed, direct effect, varied targets and anonymity are all benefits that make attacking computers and networks in cyberspace an attractive solution. ICT could thus serve as a powerful instrument to advance political and ideological viewpoints. The ICT landscape now faces an emerging threat in the form of cyberterrorists. However, it is important not to incorrectly perceive ordinary cyber attacks as cyberterrorism. Cyberterrorism is different from cybercrime in that is has differing motives, attack goals, techniques and intended effects. The motivation for cyberterrorism largely stems from political and ideological views (religious, social activism, retributional). Cyber attacks are mainly driven by financial theft, fraud or espionage, whereas cyberterrorism aims to create publicity for a cause and leave a high impact. In this study, a Cyberterrorism Life Cycle (CLC) Model is developed in order to demonstrate the various factors that lead to the establishment and growth of cyberterrorism. The model depicts the various strategic and technical issues that are relevant to the field. Overall, this model aims to structure the dynamic interaction of the behavioural and technological factors that influence the development of cyberterrorism. Throughout the research, various factors that are influential to cyberterrorism are investigated. The research follows a systematic approach of revealing various underlying issues and thereafter compiling the holistic CLC model to depict these critical issues. Part 1 introduces cyberterrorism and provides the background to the field by discussing incidents and example groups. Initially, the concept of cyberterrorism is explored and the proposed definition tested. Part 2 looks at investigating cyberterrorism more deeply. A conceptual framework is presented that introduces the most pertinent factors in the field of cyberterrorism. Next, the traditional and innovative use of the Internet to carry out and support terrorism is explored. Then, the study addresses the determination of additional social factors using Partial Least Squares Path Modelling. In Part 3, the field of cyberterrorism is more intensely studied. Cyberterrorism is mapped to the Observe-Orient- Decide-Act (OODA) loop, which will form the basis of the CLC model. Thereafter, the most influential concepts essential to the field of cyberterrorism are applied in order to classify attacks as cyberterrorism using ontologies. Furthermore, in Part 3, countermeasures are discussed to look at ways to combat cyberterrorism. Part 4 forms the crux of the research. The CLC model is presented as a structured representation of the various influential factors relevant to cyberterrorism. Thereafter, the CLC model is simulated to show the field more dynamically. Overall, the CLC model presented in this study aims to show the interaction of the various strategic, behavioural and technical issues. The CLC model can help elucidate the reasons for attraction into extremist groups and how attacks are carried out.
The Stream: Are the Roots of Radicalisation Online?
2014 Al Jazeera Video
A New Approach to Counter Radicalization
2014 US Council on Foreign Relations Video
US Council on Foreign Relations panel discussion on approaches to countering radicalisation. Panel members include Peter Neumann of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation, a VOX-Pol partner. Originally recorded on 18 May 2011 and uploaded by the Council on Foreign Relations on April 1, 2011
King's College London Online Radicalisation
2014 Neumann, P. and Stevens, T. Video
Dr Peter Neumann and Tim Stevens of VOX-Pol partner, the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence at Kings College London, discuss the role of cyberspace in terrorism and insurgency. They ask if policies such as internet censorship are effective measure to counteract online radicalisation. Originally uploaded by ICSR on 12 February 2010
The Power of Online Radicalization with Peter Neumann, part 1
2014 Neumann, P. Video
An Interview with Peter Neumann by David H. Schanzer, Associate Professor of the Practice for Public Policy and Director, Triangle Center of Terrorism and Homeland Security. Originally uploaded by D Schanzer on 31 January 2014 (Part 1)
'Waging War on the Ideological Battleground' Dr Anne Aly YouTube
2014 Aly, A. Lecture
Paper presented at Swansea University 2014: Terrorists' Use of the Internet (5th-6th June 2014) by Dr Anne Aly of Curtin University. Dr Daly's paper focuses on terroristic narratives and counter narratives online.
Web as Weapon Internet as a Tool for Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism (Part 1 of 2)
2014 Hoffman, B. Video
Web as Weapon: Internet as a Tool for Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism (Part 1 of 2) Committee on Homeland Security, Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing, and Terrorism Risk Assessment. WITNESSES: Dr. Bruce Hoffman, Professor, Georgetown University; Ms. Rita Katz, Director, SITE Institute; Ms. Parry Aftab, Internet Attorney; Mr. Mark Weitzman, Director, Task Force Against Hate, Simon Wiesenthal Center. Video provided by U.S. House of Representatives. Discussion held on 071106. Originally uploaded by House.Resource.Org on 14 November 2011
Web as Weapon Internet as a Tool for Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism ( Part 2 of 2 )
2014 Hoffman, B. Video
Web as Weapon: Internet as a Tool for Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism (Part 2 of 2) Committee on Homeland Security, Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing, and Terrorism Risk Assessment. WITNESSES: Dr. Bruce Hoffman, Professor, Georgetown University; Ms. Rita Katz, Director, SITE Institute; Ms. Parry Aftab, Internet Attorney; Mr. Mark Weitzman, Director, Task Force Against Hate, Simon Wiesenthal Center. Video provided by U.S. House of Representatives. Discussion held on 071106. Originally uploaded by House.Resource.Org on 14 November 2011
'Weighing the Role of the Internet in Past, Present, and Future Terrorism' Dr Maura Conway
2014 Conway, M. Lecture
VOX-Pol Coordinator Dr Maura Conway discussing the role of the Internet in the past, the present & the future of terrorism, at the 2014 Symposium of Cyber Terrorism Project at Swansea University.
Jihad, Syria, and Social Media; How Foreign Fighters Have Documented Their War
2014 Channel 4 Video
BBC Radio Scotland Morning Show 05 09 14 YouTube
2014 Havlicek, S. Audio
Sasha Havlicek of the Institute for Strategic Dialogue interviewed on BBC Radio Scotland morning show on 5 September 2014 to discuss [internet] radicalisation of women in the UK. Originally published on 10 September 2014 by BBC Radio Scotland
The Hidden Face of Jihadist Internet Forum Management: The Case of Ansar Al Mujahideen
2014 Torres-Soriano, M.R. Journal
This article offers a descriptive analysis of the private interactions which took place on the jihadist Internet forum known as Ansar Al Mujahideen between 2008 and 2010. The analysis of the non-visible part of the forum contributes to a more robust underpinning of some current assumptions regarding the jihadist Internet infrastructure and its hierarchical dependence on, and subordination to, formal terrorist organisations and charismatic leaders. In addition, it offers a new perspective on
other aspects such as the many conflicts and rivalries between the different forums, the operational constraints caused by the lack of human and material resources, and the considerable vulnerability of the forums to cyber-sabotage and infiltration attempts.
The Effectiveness Of The Principle Of Distinction In The Context Of Cyber Warfare
2014 Van Breda, L. C.
International humanitarian law provides foundational norms which are to be observed by states in order to protect civilians from the harsh realities of war. These norms have been applied to traditional kinetic methods of warfare but as technology advances at a rapid pace so too do methods of warfare. As weaponry becomes more sophisticated it is necessary to revisit the foundational principles of international humanitarian law and apply them to situations that could only previously have been imagined. The principles of distinction is a core principle of this branch of law and it is not to be disregarded as a result of the fact that it predates modern methods of warfare but rather it is to be re-examined, its importance observed and applied to the warfare that we are faced with today. Protecting civilians has been of utmost importance in recent history and the development in the technology of weapons should not change that fact in the present or future.
Live-Tweeting Terror: A Rhetorical Analysis of @HSMPress_ Twitter Updates During the 2013 Nairobi Hostage Crisis
2014 Sullivan, R. Journal
With the advent of social media, terrorist organisations have seized an unprecedented opportunity to engage wider audiences with their ideologies and actions. This study aims to develop an understanding of this tactic by analysing its use in the 2013 Westgate Mall hostage crisis. During that event, the Twitter account @HSMPress_ provided continuous updates supporting the actions of the terrorist organisation Al- Shabaab. Situating the event within a framework of Jürgen Habermas’s theories of the Public Sphere and Andrew Mack’s theories of asymmetric warfare, this paper employs Kenneth Burke’s dramatistic pentad to perform a rhetorical analysis of the tweets using both artistic and inartistic factors. It does so in order to understand how they engaged the audience of the terrorist event, emphasising the performative nature of the text in accordance with behaviourist objectives. The results of this analysis will demonstrate how terrorist groups may use platforms like Twitter to achieve a strategic political goal by shifting viewer perspectives, with significant implications for future policy governing social media content and censorship.
Islamophobia and Twitter: A Typology of Online Hate Against Muslims on Social Media
2014 Awan, I. Journal
The Woolwich attack in May 2013 has led to a spate of hate crimes committed against Muslim communities in the United Kingdom. These incidents include Muslim women being targeted for wearing the headscarf and mosques being vandalized. While street level Islamophobia remains an important area of investigation, an equally disturbing picture is emerging with the rise in online anti-Muslim abuse. This article argues that online Islamophobia must be given the same level of attention as street level Islamophobia. It examines 500 tweets from 100 different Twitter users to examine how Muslims are being viewed and targeted by perpetrators of online abuse via the Twitter search engine, and offers a typology of offender characteristics.
'The Call to Jihad The Role of Internet Preachers' Angela Gendron YouTube 360p
2014 Gendron, A. Lecture
Angela Gendron of Carleton University at 'Swansea University's Symposium 2014: Terrorists' Use of the Internet' speaks on radicalisation and the role of internet preachers. Originally published on July 4, 2014 by CTProject
Sasha Havlicek Interviewed by BBC News on Internet Radicalisation and Effective Counter Narratives
2014 Havlicek, S. Video
Sasha Havlicek of the Institute for Strategic Dialogue interviewed by BBC News in July 2014 on the topic of internet radicalisation and effective counter-narratives. Originally published by the BBC on 1 July 2014
Technological Skills of White Supremacists in an Online Forum: A Qualitative Examination
2014 Holt, T.J. and Bolden, M.S. Journal
Research surrounding radicalization to and use of violence among extremist and terror groups has expanded over the last decade. There are still fundamental questions that must be addressed, particularly regarding the role of the Internet in radicalisation and recruitment as well as general technological skill within extremist groups. Few studies have considered this issue, especially among Far Right groups which have been identified as one of the top threats to public safety within the United States. This exploratory study addresses these issues using a qualitative analysis of a sample of threads from a technology-specific subforum of a widely used web forum in the white nationalist and white power movement. The findings demonstrate that the process of information sharing is distinct from that of more sophisticated deviant and criminal communities on-line, as users readily answer basic technological questions rather than discuss offensive attack techniques. The implications of this study for future research are examined in depth.