May 15, 2021

Research/Reference: New Data: “White Supremacist Propaganda Nearly Doubles on Campus in 2017-18 Academic Year”

From the Anti-Defamation League:

White supremacist groups continued to escalate their propaganda campaign targeting U.S. college campuses, with incidents increasing by 77 percent during the 2017-2018 academic year, according to new data released today by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL).

From Sept. 1, 2017 to May 31, 2018, ADL’s Center on Extremism documented 292 cases of white supremacist propaganda on college campuses — including fliers, stickers, banners, and posters — compared to 165 during the 2016-17 academic year. Since Sept. 1, 2016, ADL has recorded 478 propaganda incidents, targeting 287 college campuses in 47 states and the District of Columbia.

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The propaganda messages range from veiled white supremacist language to explicitly racist images and words that attack minority groups, including Jews, Blacks, Muslims, non-white immigrants, and the LGBTQ community. Some recent examples focus on the baseless perception of danger posed by undocumented immigrants traveling toward the Mexican-American border.

Identity Evropa (IE), a group focused on the preservation of “white American culture” and promoting white European identity, was responsible for nearly half (230) of the 478 incidents. Patriot Front — which was formed within the last year — was responsible for 70 incidents.

Campuses in Texas and California were the most frequent targets of white supremacist propaganda, with 67 and 58 incidents, respectively, since September 2016. Those states are home to the most concentrated and active memberships for both IE and Patriot Front. Florida and Washington state followed with 24 incidents each.

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In addition to on-campus activity, white supremacist groups have stepped up their propaganda efforts in other public spaces, targeting locations such as highway overpasses (see March 2018 ADL report about this trend). ADL has recorded 185 non-campus propaganda distributions since January 2018 —  an average of more than one incident every day so far this year.

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About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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