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The RECO_DAR project significantly enhances our understanding of the development and dissemination of hate speech online. To achieve this goal, the project employs state-of-the-art research tools to map the right-wing extremist and hate speech ecosystems that span multiple major and minor social media and gaming platforms. These platforms have gained significant traction with a younger audience, unlike the more established and researched platforms that are less popular with this demographic. By focusing on emerging platforms, the project aims to better understand the evolution of hate speech in this context and its impact on the youth audience.

The analysis carried out by the project delves into the evolution of hate speech, including narratives and visual content, across platforms, as well as the strategies employed by various clusters of actors within the ecosystem to recruit and disseminate content in the German-speaking area and beyond. The project leverages its findings to develop awareness-raising approaches aimed at helping stakeholders recognize and report hate speech, as well as creating counter-narratives. Additionally, the project outlines concrete measures to combat intolerance, racism, and discrimination, especially those based on race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, and gender identity, perpetrated by right-wing extremist actors online. Given their central role in these areas, the project's initiatives are of paramount importance.

Right-wing extremist actors are among the primary drivers of hate speech, and a better understanding of their operating ecosystem is crucial for developing sustainable and effective prevention programs in both online and offline spaces. These efforts not only enhance our ability to safeguard minority groups and women, who are frequently targeted by hate speech, but also protect minors who may be exposed to such content without the necessary tools to process these encounters.

The project, funded by the European Union, seeks to address the following research questions:

  • How do right-wing extremist actors utilize and link across different platforms, for the purposes of recruitment, agitation, and networking?

  • More specifically, how do these digital ecosystems and clusters thrive? Who publishes content? What are central themes, key messages, and reoccurring narratives? What are the aesthetic means? How many people participate through comments?

  • How do linking efforts across platforms lead users towards increasingly extreme content, incl. calls for and/or glorification of violence and if so, how?

Image by Rubaitul Azad


Building on the aforementioned objectives, our intention is to achieve the following:

  • defining indicators of hate speech on social media platforms and mapping their manifestations by units of analysis (text, image, video);

  • utilising cutting-edge technological solutions to systematically record hate speech by right-wing extremists and classifying its various technical, aesthetical, and subject-related forms of expressions and manifestations;

  • mapping the eco-systems of German-speaking right-wing extremism driving hate speech across platforms, in particular by tracing the flow of links from TikTok (as a larger and more open platform) to other fringe and smaller websites and social media: e.g. Telegram, Discord, Steam, DLive, Odysee, Twitch (depending on which ones appear most frequently); 

  • assessing the various strategies of disseminating hate speech, including across platforms, as well as related recruitment strategies. This will be done both automatically and manually where necessary (e.g. DLive, Odyssee), and 

  • analysing content with a focus on the progression of the levels of extremity as a consequence of linkages.


The RECO_DAR project aims to fill a critical research gap by focusing on far-right extremist ecosystems on growing and newer digital platforms that are popular with younger audiences. By studying the technical, aesthetic, and narrative-related strategies used by right-wing extremist actors to spread and utilize hate speech, the project will lead to a better understanding of the respective ecosystems driving hate speech online. The expected results and dissemination activities will contribute to increased knowledge of hate speech online and increased public awareness in the short-term.


The project will have a tangible and direct impact on the work of a range of professionals, public authorities, social media companies, and academia. Specifically, we aim to engage practitioners who work with young people active on emerging social media platforms, as opposed to more established platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. The multi-professional target groups include researchers, social workers, civil servants, community leaders, educators/teachers, child protection professionals, EU and national policymakers, NGOs/CSOs, and victim support services.

This multi-stakeholder group plays an essential role in the fight against hate speech both online and offline, and they stand to benefit significantly from improved knowledge on the ecosystem and progression of hate speech. Such knowledge will enable them to tailor their approaches to new and growing platforms. Through the project, stakeholders will be provided with tools and knowledge to identify and assess hate speech, for example, through the use of indicators, and to enact effective counter-narrative campaigns while also reporting hate speech online.

The counter-narrative content and techniques produced within the project will be highly relevant for the practical work of these stakeholders, as they will serve as templates and guidelines for the development of their own counter-narrative efforts. Social media companies will also be engaged in fora such as GIFCT (Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism) and GNET (Global Network on Extremism and Technology) to strengthen cooperation across sectors, increase knowledge, and raise awareness. Such cooperation is crucial, especially considering the current challenges faced by European states in managing cooperation with social media in this area.

Image by Alexander Shatov


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Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Commission (Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers). Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.

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