Islamic State

By Louise Laing and Maura Conway One of the questions we get asked quite often at VOX-Pol—by not just PhD students and early career researchers, but established scholars too and, in fact, that we quite often ask ourselves! — is ‘what are appropriate academic journals for publication of research on online extremism and terrorism?’ A generic…

By Anne Speckhard “If I was going to die at least I could die helping children. [It’s] illogical that you are entering a war zone that you don’t know anything about … I felt if I did something good it would overwrite the bad that had happened.” — Canadian 46-year-old Kimberly Pullman, speaking about her decision…

Deplatforming terrorists from messaging apps may damage existing networks, but those who remain often double down in their beliefs. By Amarnath Amarasingam Earlier this week, a fellow terrorism researcher and friend sent me a text which stated: “TamTam is amazing. I missed all the early ISIS stuff on Telegram. Now I feel like I was…

By Manuel R. Torres-Soriano The collapse of Islamic State’s “caliphate” has had an enormous impact on jihadist activism on the Internet. In a short space of time, we have witnessed a shift from an ecosystem that orbited around the leadership of a strong organisation capable of shouldering the initiative and most of the work needed to…

Summary of Tech Against Terrorism’s analysis: Analysis of more than 45,000 URLs since 2014 across more than 330 platforms shows that smaller platforms are heavily targeted by ISIS and that 49% of all URLs were found on just eight of these platforms. Key conclusions: ISIS experimentation with small social media platform Koonekti is the most…

By Nancy Jamal In the aftermath of the Christchurch attack, attention has been drawn to the role of mass media in the aftermath of such attacks, including by the UK’s most senior counter-terrorism police officer, Neil Basu. Last week’s Blog post also addressed responsible reporting, as does Virginie Andre’s report Understanding the Impact of Terrorist Event Reporting on Countering…

By Nathan Shea The first news that militants had taken to the streets of the Islamic City of Marawi on May 23, 2017, came from Facebook. Pictures of masked men carrying assault rifles and waving the black flag of the Islamic State were swirling across social media well before Philippine and international news channels picked…

By Anne Speckhard and Ardian Shajkovci With the collapse of the so-called “Islamic State” in Iraq, and much of Syria, an immediate corresponding and steady decline occurred in ISIS’ strategic communication and online propaganda activities. However, the group’s “virtual Caliphate” is rebounding and still remains very much alive today – it continues to create new content,…

VOX-Pol contributed to the inaugural Radicalisation Awareness Network (RAN) Civil Society Empowerment Programme (CSEP) campaigns event in Brussels this week. We therefore thought we’d share some insights from a previous RAN event focused on online CVE. [Ed.] Introduction It is an essential part of extremist propaganda and outreach to not only communicate their messages to…