Far right pleasure on the internet threatens to spill over into cruelty in the real world, according to some eyewitness. But are governments and tech companies doing enough to counter the hazard?
Two days before the two attacks, Australian Brenton Tarrant tweeted images of the weapons he was going to use. Half an hour before, he delineated what he was going to do in an online forum. A few minutes before, he emailed a “manifesto” explaining why. And as he began, he turn on a Facebook live stream for beings around the world to watch.
The attack on mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in which more than 50 people were killed, was an act of violence portended online.
Tarrant, who appeared in court in June to disavow service charges, was a lone individual. But he was also someone who occupied an internet-based international subculture, one whose creed is moving from the darker contacts of the internet into the political mainstream.
The fear is that security services and tech firms have been slow to deal with this growing brand-new threat.