How Facebook became one of the far-right’s biggest recruitment tools

Analysis: Extremists will find it much harder to draw new support after the social network’s latest purge, Lizzie Dearden writes

When Mark Zuckerberg set up Facebook in 2004, he could not have predicted that the university social network would morph into one of the most powerful recruitment tools for extremists around the world.

But that is what it became. For the British far right, Facebook was used for everything from event organisation to fundraising, networking, publicity and, most importantly, drawing in new recruits.

And they were phenomenally successful. Tommy Robinson, the founder of the English Defence League (EDL), amassed more than 1 million followers before his page was deleted.

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