Indicator history

Close Window

Media: Frequency and relevance of hate speech incidents in public life (and media) and media representations against migrants and minorities?

Key Area:
Public Life, Culture, Sport & Media
25/01/2013 - 13:04
Short Answer

There is a high relevance of hate speech incidents in public life and media.

Qualitative Info

According to the Amadeu Antonio foundation, who continuously monitors media reports and other relevant sources and compiles a permanently updated chronology of anti-Semitic incidents, counted 53 incidents of verbal threats, harassment and hate speech in 2009 (2008: 85). Among those, there were eight cases of incitement to hatred.
The expert group Arbeitsstelle Rechtsextremismus und Gewalt [Right-wing Extremism and Violence; ARUG] at the Bildungsvereinigung Arbeit und Leben [Education Association Work and Life] presented two non-exhaustive chronologies, one on anti-Semitic incidents and one on right-wing violence that were reported about by the media in 2009. The chronology on anti-Semitic offences in 2009 lists 132 incidents with 140 separate offences, i.e. in some cases more than one offence was committed. 80 offences fell within the category of verbal threats and hate speech (including incitement to hatred), partly from right-wing extremist political parties. The ARUG chronology on right-wing violence in 2009 lists 249 such incidents with 295 individual offences, among those 34 cases of incitement to hatred (verbal threats and hate speech). 63 of the 249 cases seemed to be primarily committed with a racist motivation; Islamophobia plays a subordinate role (three cases). In 95 cases the offences targeted people considered political opponents.

According to the latest monitoring reports of both CERD and ECRI racist expression and hate speech on the internet plays an important role in Germany. According to ECRI, a high proportion of racist expression via the internet stems from extreme right-wing and neo-Nazi groups; ‘their targets are most often Roma/Sinti or members of the Jewish community’ [3].

The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (VerfS) also stated that the internet continues to be an important platform for right-wing extremists. With approximately 1,000 right-wing extremist websites run by Germans, the numbers of these websites has remained at a remarkably high level, as it has in the last few years. Furthermore, 33 internet radio stations with right-wing extremist (partly legally banned) music were identified by the VerfS in 2011. The VerfS counted 131 right-wing extremist concerts in 2011 (2010: 128), with an average of 150 visitors (2010: 130). The number of active right-wing extremist bands, i.e. those that recorded a CD or played at concerts, increased from 165 (2010) to 178 in 2011.
In addition, the number of right-wing extremist periodicals slightly increased from 81 in 2010 to 85 in 2011 [6].


  1. A. Maegerle (2010) Rechte Gewalt in Deutschland 2009. Eine Chronik,, Accessed on 20.02.2012.
  2. A. Maegerle (2010) Antisemitismus in Deutschland 2009. Eine Chronik,, Accessed on 20.02.2012.
  3. ECRI (2009) ECRI Report on Germany (fourth monitoring cycle), available at:, Accessed on 20.02.2012.
  4. Bundesministerium des Innern (2011), Verfassungsschutzbericht 2010,, Accessed on 20.02.2012.
  5. Bundesministerium des Innern (2010), Verfassungsschutzbericht 2009,, Accessed on 24.01.2012.
  6. Bundesministerium des Innern (2012), Verfassungsschutzbericht 2011,, Accessed on 24.01.2013.


Groups affected/interested
Type (R/D) Extremism - organised Racist Violence, Anti-migrant/xenophobia, Anti-semitism, Islamophobia
Key socio-economic / Institutional Areas Media, Internet, Daily life
External Url