What is radicalisation and what does Twitter have to do with it?

What is radicalisation and what does Twitter have to do with it?

Posted on Mar 18, 2016

What is radicalisation and what does Twitter have to do with it?



There is constant talk of radicalisation, ISIS, and social media in the news – but what does it all mean?

Radicalisation is the process of grooming someone to adopt extreme political, social and religious ideals and aspirations.

ISIS (also known as Daesh, IS, ISIL and Islamic State) are an extremist Jihadi group who control a large territory in Iraq and Syria, who have been named as responsible for recent attacks such as the gun attacks in Paris at the Eagles of Death Metal concert. 

ISIS have a reputation for extreme brutality and sexual violence such as crucifixions, beheadings and amputations.To most, the thought of these terrible acts of violence would be enough to have nothing to do with them – but unfortunately, this is where social media comes in.


What does social media have to do with radicalisation?


Like with sexual predators – ISIS prey on those who are vulnerable. 

If a vulnerable personis exposed to extremist views (such as via social media) and there is an absence of protective factors such as a supportive network of family, friends, or a fulfilling job, they can easily fall victim to radicalisation.

Estimates suggest that there are over 45,000 ISIS twitter accounts at any one time, and even though Twitter officials are regularly taking these accounts down – with more being added just as quickly as being removed - it is likely that young people will come across them. 

Not only have these accounts tried to shame Muslims into believing that if they were true followers of Allah they would join them no questions asked, but they are also providing a stage for propaganda to be delivered, such as promising to give young girls, husbands, housing, friendship and even cash and pets. 


Click on the below link to download your free guide to ISIS recruitment on social media. 


How does ISIS recruit via social media?


Those who are most vulnerable (but are not limited to) include young people from 13 upwards as well as those who are: 


  • experiencing identity or personal crisis
  • have feelings of unmet aspirations
  • a need for adventure or excitement
  • a history of criminal behaviour


Social media also plays a part in other threats to vulnerable young people from extreme right-wing and neo-Nazi organisations who are trying to encourage hatred, which you can find out more about in flick’s prevention of radicalisation course.

It’s important to remember that radicalisation is a form of abuse so it is important to follow your organisations safeguarding procedures.


For more information on the actions to take and when you and your staff should be taking them, complete our prevention of radicalisation training now.


radicalisation training with flick


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