Just days after Google pulled a Chrome extension known as the “Coincidence Detector,” the symbol used by white nationalists to target Jewish people online has been labeled hate speech. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) announced today that the triple parentheses, or (((echo))) symbol, would be added to its “Hate on Display” online database.
“The echo symbol is the online equivalent of tagging a building with anti-Semitic graffiti or taunting someone verbally,” said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL CEO, in the official statement. “We at ADL take this manifestation of online hate seriously, and that’s why we’re adding this symbol to our database and working with our partners in the tech industry to investigate this phenomenon more deeply.”
“The echo symbol is the online equivalent of tagging a building with anti-Semitic graffiti.”
The echo symbol was detailed by a Mic investigation last week, and was traced all the way back to The Daily Shoah, a podcast that preaches extremely anti-Semitic rhetoric. First appearing in 2014, the symbol is used by trolls to target Jewish people on Twitter and other social media platforms for abuse. According to Engadget, the “Coincidence Detector” was being used by 2,500 people to track more than 8,700 names.
In response to the ongoing harassment facing journalists, the ADL has also formed a Task Force on Harassment of Journalists to address the abuse. Media figures have also taken to using the echo symbol online to, as Vox explains, both expose and legitimize the symbol while also showing solidarity against the alt-right.