ADL Commends Yahoo for Action Banning Nazi Memorabilia and Other Hateful Items on its Auction Site
New York, NY, January 3, 2001 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today commended Yahoo! for its decision to take steps to remove hateful materials from its Internet auctions, calling it a "creative solution to combat the flood of Nazi memorabilia and other offensive and hateful items being hawked for sale to the highest bidder in their online auctions."
Glen A. Tobias, ADL National Chairman, and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:
We commend Yahoo! for its decision to ensure that hateful materials do not appear in its online auctions. We believe Yahoo! has come up with a creative solution to combat the flood of Nazi memorabilia and other offensive or hateful items being hawked for sale to the highest bidder in their online auctions.
While there is no law in the United States against selling these items to the public, they were clearly offensive to many individuals who frequent the auction site. Yahoo! has recognized this public concern and demonstrated corporate responsibility by establishing guidelines for users who wish to sell items online and actively monitoring auction rooms for inappropriate or offensive content. Yahoo!'s decision means that the Internet provider is taking a more proactive role in enforcing its own "Terms of Service," which forbid the posting of content that is hateful or otherwise objectionable.
The Internet is a great tool for education and communication, but it continues to pose complex issues, requiring Internet companies to walk a fine line between free expression and inappropriate or hateful conduct. Internet companies need to be continually on watch for hateful content and, when appropriate, to respond with similar solutions.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.