Ban them from the Internet

William JordanUS Elections Editor
May 31, 2013, 5:19 PM GMT+0

A majority of voters disapprove of individuals like Anjem Choudary appearing on television and radio, but most also believe that only an internet embargo will be effective in preventing the spread of radical messages

Last week the BBC was criticised for an interview that aired on current affairs programme Newsnight, in which radical cleric Anjem Choudary refused to say he “abhorred” the Woolwich murder. The following day Home Secretary Theresa May said she would look into regulating radicals off of the airwaves; the BBC news chief responded directly to the criticism, saying, “It’s important for people to understand what we’re up against”.

Most people (53%) think the BBC was wrong to interview Choudary, and even more (59%) support a legal ban on radicals like him appearing on television and radio.

However, fewer than four in ten (38%) think disallowing such media appearences will be effective in preventing the message from reaching people.

Non-legal measures aimed at preventing the dissemination of extremist views online inspire greater support and confidence. More than three quarters (76%) think websites like Google and YouTube should refuse to host or link to sites where such views are encouraged.

Additionally, most of the public (57%) think an online embargo would be effective in keeping the message of radicals like Choudary from spreading.

While Labour and Lib Dem voters have doubts about a television and radio ban (only 50% of Labour voters and 39% of Lib Dems support it), majorities of voters from every major party support the internet ban – and also think it will be effective.

See the full poll results

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