As the threat of ISIS continues to gain prominence around the world, the Obama administration has brought together some of the biggest names in the tech industry to tackle the group’s online presence.
Executives from Apple, Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook and MTV met with the Justice Department last week to discuss the project, named: “Madison Valleywood,” which is a combination of ‘slang industry names. According to CNN, the group of executives spoke with counterintelligence officials about how best to combat ISIS on social media, a platform which the terrorist group is gaining ground at a frightening pace, inspiring lone-wolf operations around the world.
Informed obtained by CNN showed that almost 50 technology firms and community groups participated in the meeting, as well as U.S government agencies such as the Justice Department, the State Department and the National Security Council.
The session agenda was discussed with plans to counteract ISIS propaganda with “counter-narratives and optimistic messaging.” The appearance of Apple at the meeting was also noted, in light of its stance in favor of user privacy.
Some social media companies are already working toward combatting ISIS’ social media presence, as of early February, Twitter announced it had shut down 125,000 ISIS-related accounts. In addition to this, Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg pledged her support toward user activity, like “’like’ attacks” as a potential way to combat hate speech.
Obama’s tenure in office has been marked by a number of innovative technology-related initiatives, including hiring top talent to improve the way the U.S. government uses technology. It must be said, that if ‘Madison Valleywood’ is successful in thwarting ISIS’ online activity, it may end up playing a large role in President Obama’s legacy.
*Photo: Official White House Photo by Pete Souza/White House