SKeyes Center for Media and Cultural Freedom - Samir Kassir Foundation

Social Media Reaction to SKeyes’ Violation Monitoring: Shaden Fakih’s Case

Wednesday , 20 July 2022
Design: Mahmoud Younis

Case Study No.4: Shaden Fakih Convicted and Fined by the Military Court Due to an Instagram Video

The Samir Kassir Foundation (SKF) is selecting one case of violations against freedom of expression in Lebanon on a monthly basis and analyzing the reaction garnered on its own social media accounts. The aim is to understand the perception of our own social media audience to our reporting and assess the general level of support to freedom of expression in Lebanon.

 

In June 2022, SKF chose the case of Shaden Fakih being convicted and fined by the Military Court due to a video that she posted. Shaden was accused of tarnishing the reputation of the General Directorate of the Internal Security Forces (ISF) and fined 1,859,000 LBP after she posted a video to her Instagram page in which she called the ISF and asked them for permission to leave her house because her period had started, and she needed tampons at a time when there was a lockdown to combat growing Covid-19 cases.


Out of 75 analyzed accounts, 66.7% (50) were against the actress victim of violation, 22.3% (17) were with her, and 10% (8) were neutral.



Out of the 75 analyzed accounts, 49% (37) of the users published comments that contained hate speech while 51% (38) of the accounts posted comments that did not contain hate speech.



Out of the 75 analyzed accounts, 5% (4) showed affiliation with Hezbollah, 1.3% (1) person showed affiliation with the Amal Movement, 1.3% (1) with the Lebanese Forces, 1.3 % (1) with the Free Patriotic Movement, and 90.6% (68) did not exhibit any visible political affiliation.

The four Hezbollah leaning accounts were against the actress victim of violation. Similarly, the Amal Movement leaning account was against Shaden Fakih. The only Lebanese Forces leaning account was against of the actress. Likewise, the only Free Patriotic Movement leaning account posted a content directed against the actress and comedian.



There were almost equal comments between males and females (38 and 37 respectively). However, the ratio of comments containing hate speech was higher in the comments posted by male users than comments published by female ones.



This report was made possible through support from the UN Democracy Fund.

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