Tags: anas modamani | facebook | fake news | refugee

Anas Modamani: Facebook, Syrian Refugee in Court Over Fake News

Image: Anas Modamani: Facebook, Syrian Refugee in Court Over Fake News

German Chancellor Angela Merkel poses for a selfie with Anas Modamani, a refugee from Syria, on Sept. 10, 2015. Modamani is suing Facebook after he says his selfies were misused by Facebook users accusing him of being a terrorist and that Facebook refused to remove them. (Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 07 Feb 2017 03:48 PM

Anas Modamani had no idea when he posted on Facebook a 2015 selfie taken with German Chancellor Angela Merkel that he would turn into the poster boy for radical Islamic terror.

The then-18-year-old met Merkel in a German refugee camp after leaving war-torn Syria and his selfie with the leader went viral because it showed Merkel’s personality in a “rare unscripted moment,” according to CNN.

The problems began when the photo started appearing in stories and Facebook posts about terror attacks such as the Brussels bombings and the Christmas market attack in Berlin. Not only was the photo shared more 200,000 times in connection to the Brussels attacks, false reports spread all over Facebook that Modamani was behind the Berlin market attack, CNN said.

Modamani was living with a foster family by that time and working at a local McDonalds. His foster mother Anke Meeuw demanded the posts be taken down, and at first, they were. As his picture was used and shared more often, however, the social media site often replied, “This photo is not against their standards,” CNN reported.

Modamani has become a victim of the intense criticism leveled against Merkel for her immigration policies, even though he never had anything to do with a terror attack, The New York Times said. So he filed for an injunction that would require Facebook to remove any content involving him and terrorism.

The two sides argued for hours in a recent court hearing, unable to come to terms, and a ruling is scheduled for sometime Tuesday.

Facebook argued it removed all flagged posts and images,and that it was the users’ responsibility to post responsibly and to notify Facebook of any problematic content, the Times reported.

“We are real people,” Meeuw said, CNN reported. “He is a real young man, living in real Germany, in a real family with real friends with a real job.”

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Anas Modamani had no idea when he posted on Facebook a 2015 selfie taken with German Chancellor Angela Merkel that he would turn into the poster boy for radical Islamic terror.
anas modamani, facebook, fake news, refugee
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2017-48-07
Tuesday, 07 Feb 2017 03:48 PM
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