Today, Leaders from Governments, Online Service Providers, Civil Society, and Partners of the Christchurch Call met in Paris at the Elysée Palace to continue our shared efforts towards the elimination of terrorist and violent extremist content online.
This year’s Summit takes place in the context of important challenges for the Call:
• The conflict in Gaza and Israel has given rise to significant volumes of terrorist and violent extremist content, and content that glorifies or promotes violence, antisemitism, and Islamophobia.
• Rapid advances in technology, including foundation AI models, present us with powerful new tools to better manage the problem of terrorist and violent extremist content online, and create new tools and vulnerabilities that can be exploited by terrorists and violent extremists.
Today, Leaders reaffirmed their commitment to a strong, resilient, and effective Call and to eliminating terrorist and violent extremist content, protecting and promoting human rights online, and a free, open, secure global internet as a force for good, and as a digital platform for innovation and social progress.
Our Community continues to expand. We welcome four new Call supporters: Anthropic, Discord, Open AI, and Vimeo; and seven new partner organisations: Extremism and Gaming Research Network, CASM Technology, Memetica, Moonshot, Muflehun, Point de Contact, and Tremau. Our civil society Christchurch Call Advisory Network (CCAN) has also grown, with 11 new members. This expanded community brings new capability, expertise, and energy to the Call.
New Technology and its implications for terrorist and violent extremist content
Foundation AI models could transform the way we respond to terrorist and violent extremist content, providing better detection, prevention, and intervention capabilities, and the opportunity to scale and diversify safety tools in new contexts and languages.
Anthropic and Open AI join several existing Call supporters that have developed advanced AI capabilities. Important work is already underway to help realise this potential.
This work includes a new collaboration between Microsoft and Tech Against Terrorism to pilot the use of advanced AI to enhance existing tools and, over time, make next-generation detection services available to smaller platforms.
Without safeguards, it is inevitable advanced AI capabilities will be weaponised by terrorists and violent extremists for propaganda, recruitment, and orchestration of attacks.
Biases or vulnerabilities introduced through AI model training could present new vectors for harm or means of exploitation. Safety features may come with unintended adverse human rights impacts for diverse communities.
Red teaming and independent risk identification will form an important part of the toolkit to manage these risks. The international community has made progress in setting safety parameters and expectations around risk management, including through the leadership of individual Call supporters and the development of new forums and processes to help address overarching AI safety challenges.
Leaders endorsed the following actions:
• Working with the multistakeholder Call community to contribute to the development of frameworks, including in the context of the G7, GPAI, and AI Safety Summit, to identify, report, and mitigate terrorist and violent extremist exploitation of these tools;
• Engaging with the safety-tech sector and providers of commercial and open-source tools to support the availability of useful solutions to the sector, consistent with human rights and a free, open, secure internet;
• Continuing to onboard relevant experts, service providers, and organisations into our community;
• Working on risk assessment and red-teaming efforts to mitigate the risks of terrorist and violent extremist misuse of AI drawing on the strengths and of our multistakeholder Call Community;
• Building on existing work by online service providers to align AI content governance tools with the Call commitments and facilitating more regular reporting and dialogue on these efforts;
• Drawing upon the expertise of the technical community to ensure our efforts support and do not compromise the maintenance of a free, open, secure, and interoperable global internet, and
• working with civil society ensure that human rights are promoted and upheld.
Radicalisation and Algorithmic Outcomes
The Call commitments seek to address the underlying drivers of terrorist and violent extremist content online, in addition to the more immediate issues of content moderation.
They require that we consider the challenge of radicalisation to violence, which so often leads to the creation of new terrorist and violent extremist content.
Radicalisation is not solely an online phenomenon, but our work has highlighted the need for better insights about online activity, to enable the design of effective interventions, prevention measures, or other policy solutions. Users and communities play an important role in prevention and should be empowered to assist in this work.
The perspectives of young people are vital to understanding how the online user journeys of increasingly young perpetrators might contribute to radicalisation and exposure to terrorist and violent extremist content.
Last year Leaders asked the community to find ways of safely and effectively engaging with youth and reflecting their voices in our work. Today we hosted our first Youth Engagement meeting, where we heard directly from young people about their priorities in countering terrorist and violent extremist content online, and how they think we should go about this work. Leaders welcomed the initiative to launch a Youth Reference Group for the Christchurch Call to ensure young people can have input to the Call Community and its work year-round.
Leaders welcomed the report on Misogynistic Pathways to Radicalisation prepared by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue in association with the Christchurch Call and the
Global Partnership for Action on Gender-Based Online Harassment and Abuse. Leaders noted the importance of taking action to address anti-LGBTQIA+ violence and gender-based violence as vectors of radicalisation, developing and implementing multistakeholder recommendations on this important issue and continuing to deepen the evidence base to support further action.
New regulatory measures to promote researcher access to data, and new voluntary transparency measures, including online service providers providing detailed information about the inputs to, and the code that supports their content recommendations, have expanded the possibility to build public understanding and promote evidence-based decision making by policymakers, developers, and civil society.
Leaders welcomed the work of the EU Internet Forum including its 2023 Study on the role and effects of the use of algorithmic amplification to spread terrorist, violent extremist and borderline content, which provides an important snapshot of the different impacts of recommendation systems and user interactions and encouraged further efforts to address these risks.
The Christchurch Call Initiative on Algorithmic Outcomes (CCIAO), announced last year by New Zealand, the United States, Microsoft, and X, with the non-profit organisation
OpenMined. CCIAO has made important progress towards building a privacy-enhancing system for sharing insights about algorithmic outcomes. In the first phase, the system has been built and tested, demonstrating it can safely and securely answer questions from accredited third-party researchers using information securely held by social media platforms.
Today, we announced France, Dailymotion, and Georgetown University’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology have joined the CCIAO, pledging additional funding of US$1.3m. This will further develop the CCIAO, to expand its functionality, and investigate and test its potential as a means of facilitating third party access, including in the context of new regulatory measures.
Leaders endorsed the following actions:
• The development of new governance structure and ethics frameworks for CCIAO, to enable its further development;
• Continued work to build CCIAO into a global network that has a significant impact for the Call, for ethical and responsible deployment of AI, and for the public good; and
• Specific efforts to improve the online experience of young people, and to counteract online misogyny and anti-LGBTQIA+ hatred as a vector for violent extremism.
Next Steps for the Christchurch Call
The Christchurch Call is a significant driver of positive change, operating as a multistakeholder community stewarded by the French and New Zealand Governments and underpinned by common commitments and values. Today, Leaders considered options for putting the Call on a resilient long-term footing that will position it for success in an evolving technological, diplomatic, and international regulatory landscape, and for drawing on the advantages of the Call’s innovative model to assist with related digital challenges.
As co-Founders, New Zealand and France are committed to the long-term success of the Call. The co-Founders will work with the Call Community and potential funders to consider options and implement a structure for the Call secretariat that is resilient, better enables contributions from across our multistakeholder community, delivers results over the long term, and maintains the important attributes and values that have contributed to our success.
The Call Secretariat will investigate partnerships with complementary initiatives that share the Call’s commitment to human rights and a free, open, and secure internet; to coordinate efforts towards eliminating terrorist and violent extremist content online; and to consider how work on related issues such as information integrity, the safe and responsible deployment of artificial intelligence, and youth radicalisation, can help enhance the fulfilment of the Call commitments, and to make it easier for small institutions, governments, and organisations to participate in multistakeholder efforts to shape technology norms.
Looking ahead to the 5th anniversary of the Christchurch Call next year, Leaders will take decisions on the structures that are needed to support the Call as an impactful multistakeholder initiative into the future.
Crisis response and online content relating to the conflict in Gaza and Israel
Leaders acknowledged the fear and pain caused by the significant rise in terrorist and violent extremist content arising from the conflict, and related content inciting violence and hatred towards Jewish, and Muslim, middle eastern and all impacted communities and individuals around the world.
In the context of the conflict, governments and online service providers reaffirmed their Call commitments to eliminate terrorist and violent extremist content online, and to do so transparently and in a manner that protects and respects human rights and a free, open, and secure internet.
On crisis response capability, Leaders welcomed progress over the last year to bring more online service providers into the Call. They welcomed Tech Against Terrorism’s expansion of the Terrorist Content Analytics Platform, supported by funding from Canada, Australia’s announcement of funding for 24/7 crisis response capability which together improve support for small firms and close gaps in crisis response.
Leaders welcomed additional support to small firms, including through initiatives such as Altitude, a free, open-source tool developed by Google’s Jigsaw and Tech Against Terrorism, in collaboration with the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism (GIFCT), to help platforms protect their communities from terrorist and violent extremist content.
Leaders endorsed the following further actions:
• Review our crisis response systems to ensure we can respond rapidly, effectively and in a rights-affirming manner to online crises involving the proliferation of terrorist or violent extremist content, including those arising from complex, protracted real-world incidents and conflicts, or involving bystander content.
• Update the Christchurch Call Shared Crisis Response Protocol, so that it can adapt to the new circumstances and challenges we face, harnessing the expertise and capabilities of partners and the Christchurch Call Advisory Network to monitor and address TVEC and human rights impacts.
• Consider and incorporate approaches for de-escalating tension and preventing on- and offline hate and violence, including strategic communications and positive interventions, in the updated Crisis Response Protocol.
• Build on work over the last year to deliver new tools and expand support for smaller firms to address TVEC on their platforms, including in crises. Integrate new capability with the existing infrastructure and protocols, including the Terrorist Content Analytics Platform (TCAP) and an updated Christchurch Call Crisis Response Protocol.
• Continue working with all sectors to test and refine the system, to strengthen human rights protections and increase transparency.
Ongoing work in the Call Community
The community has made important progress in a number of additional areas including; new guidance on government transparency; research efforts on the evolution of the threat landscape; greater coordination and linkages with initiatives such as the Freedom Online Coalition, Tech for Democracy, and similar initiatives to positively shape technology norms, and the application of aspects of the Call model by France in the development of its Child Online Protection Laboratory.
Leaders endorsed the following actions:
• In collaboration with the Action Coalition on meaningful Transparency, address barriers to transparency about work to eliminate terrorist and violent extremist content, including promoting the availability of information for independent research and assessment, and making use of our joint Transparency Initiatives Portal;
• Engage in dialogue on regulatory coherence to promote effective, complementary global approaches to the elimination of terrorist and violent extremist content;
• Reinforce the role of the technical community in the Call and to promote a free, open, and secure global internet;
• A multistakeholder process to benchmark and evaluate our work against the Call commitments and improve strategic oversight, transparency, and communication about the Call’s impact and value;
• Encourage the GIFCT to continue to align its efforts in cooperation with the Call community. Welcome its efforts to expand its membership and encourage it to include a variety of platforms, such as smaller platforms and video games companies, to increase its impact in the tech industry;
• Continue to build meaningful engagement with civil society and other stakeholders, engage with- and elevate diversity of views, cultures, regions, and experiences in our work, including with victim and survivor communities.
Four years on from the launch of the Christchurch Call, we have made considerable progress on our commitments and in preventing the weaponization of the internet by terrorist and violent extremist groups.
The digital environment now plays a central, critical role in the lives of people across the globe, and new digital tools deployed through the internet offer exciting new possibilities for advancement of social wellbeing and connectedness as societies.
The nature of terrorist and violent extremist content, and exploitation of online services is changing, and this will require us to adapt. We have a strong belief that the Call’s model, grounded in human rights, and a free, open, secure internet, and motivated by shared commitment to action, can continue to offer useful ways forward in a complex, contested digital environment.
Today we have shown that the Call continues to play a vital role in shaping the digital environment for good.