Every anti-refugee attacks in Germany were scrutinized by Karsten Muller and Carlo Schwarz. In each they analyzed the local community by any variable that seemed relevant; wealth, demographics, support for far-right politics, newspaper sales, number of refugees, history of hate crimes and number of protests.
It was observed that towns were facebook use was more than average experienced more attacks like Altena, reliably experienced more attacks on refugees. That held true in any sort of community. The researchers nationwide estimated that this effect drove one-tenth of all anti-refugee violence.
This was not about the internet as an open platform for mobilization or communication. It was about Facebook in particular. Other experts who reviewed the findings found it credible rigorous and disturbing. The study bolstered a growing body of research, they said,'' finding that social media scrambles users' perception of outsiders, of reality, even of right and wrong."
Facebook declined to comment on the study but a spokeswoman said in an e-mail ; ''Our approach on what is allowed on Facebook has evolved over time and continues to change as we learn from experts in the field."