November 30, 2023
Irish-speakers not responsible for hate, but Minister said no to proposed content monitoring – Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Gaeilge, Gaeltacht, Arts and Culture, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, has condemned the suggestion by the European Commission that “Gaelic” content might be responsible for inciting hate leading to the riots in Dublin last week.

He added, however, that when Sinn Féin proposed to expand monitoring protections to explicitly cover Irish language content when the Online Safety and Media Regulation Act was scrutinised at Committee on 26 October 2022, the Minister Catherine Martin explicitly refused to accept it.

Teachta Ó Snodaigh said:

“It is frankly preposterous to anyone who speaks Irish to think that the hateful riots that took place in Dublin were a result of Irish language content not being monitored.

“It is widely known that none of the leading far-right agitators who claim to be ‘nationalists’ demonstrate even a passing interest, let alone competence, in our national language.

“I call on the European Commission to produce the evidence for their claims before they choose to smear an already vulnerable minority language community.

“The need for Irish speaking moderators was raised by Sinn Féin when the Online Safety and Media Regulation Act came before the Select Committee on Tourism, Culture, Arts, Sport and Media last year, when we proposed an amendment which would have ensured ‘the same protections for users of Irish language content as are provided to users of English language content, including in terms of content moderation’.

“Minister Catherine Martin flat out refused.

“Our rationale for the proposal at the time was that not having content moderation in Irish was actually having a detrimental effect on Irish speakers trying to use Irish on platforms.

“One platform banned advertisements in Irish because, without a competent moderator, they couldn’t be sure it was appropriate and wasn’t hateful.

“Large corporations censoring content simply because it is in Irish should not be tolerated in a bilingual state, especially one in which the same companies benefit from our generous tax regime.

“This is an issue I intend to raise further with those companies as Chair of the Irish Language Oireachtas Committee, as it impacts on freedom of speech and business opportunities for Irish speakers.

“However, it’s a bit rich for the European Commission to blame the lack of Irish language content moderation, when Minister Martin’s own excuse for not ensuring content moderation of Irish, which we accepted in good faith at the time, was that in implementing EU law at the time it would be inappropriate to single out any two EU languages.

“I would also like an explanation as to why they referred to the lack of ‘Gaelic speaking moderators’ when the official language of the European Union is ‘Irish’, not ‘Gaelic’.”

ENDS

 
Ní Gaeilgeoirí atá freagrach as an bhfuath, ach dhiúltaigh an tAire Martin dár moladh faoi modhnóireacht – Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Tá cáineadh déanta ag urlabhraí Gaeilge, Gaeltachta, Ealaíon agus Cultúir, Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, ar an líomháint atá curtha i gcoinne ábhar in “Gaelic” ag an gCoimisiún Eorpach, go bhfuil seans ann gurb iadsan atá freagrach as fuath a spreagadh a lig don chíréib i mBaile Átha Cliath an tseachtain seo caite.

Dúirt sé freiseann áfach gur dhiúltaigh an tAire Turasóireachta, Cultúir, Ealaíon, Gaeltachta, Spóirt agus Meán Catherine Martin go sonrach glacadh le moladh Shinn Féin na cosaintí modhnóireachta a leathnú amach chun ábhar Gaeilge a chuimsiú agus scrúdú á dhéanamh ar an Acht um Rialáil Sábháilteachta ar Líne agus na Meán ar an 26ú Deireadh Fómhair 2022.

Dúirt an Teachta Ó Snodaigh:

“Tá sé thar a bheith áiféiseach do dhuine ar bith a labhraíonn Gaeilge smaoineamh gur mar thoradh ar easpa modhnóireachta ar ábhar i nGaeilge a thárla an chíréib lán d’fhuath san ardchathair.

“Tá a fhios ag gach mac madra nach bhfuil a dhiabhal suim fiú ag na príomhghríosóirí ón eite fhíordheis a thugann ‘náisiúnaithe’ orthu féin inár dteanga náisiúnta, gan trácht ar chumas.

“Iarraim ar an Choimisiún Eorpach an fianaise a thabhairt ar an méid atá ráite acu sula gcuireann siad míchlú ar phobal teanga mionlach atá leochaileach cheana féin.

“D’ardaigh Sinn Féin an gá le modhnóirí le Gaeilge nuair ar tháinig an tAcht um Rialáil Sábháilteachta ar Líne agus na Meán os comhair an Roghchoiste Turasóireachta, Cultúir, Ealaíon, Spóirt agus Meán anuraidh, nuair ar mhol mé féin, Imelda Munster, Johnny Mythen agus Sorca Clarke Leasú 107 a chinnteodh ‘na cosaintí céana d’úsáideoir ábhar Gaeilge agus atá ag úsáideoir ábhar Béarla’, lena n-áirítear modhnóireacht ar ábhair.

“Dhiúltaigh an tAire Catherine Martin go hiomlán don mholadh sin.

“An tuiscint a bhí taobh thiar don mholadh sin ag an am ná go raibh drochthionchar ag an easpa modhnóireacht ar ábhair i nGaeilge ar Ghaeilgeoirí a bhí ag iarraidh Gaeilge a úsáid ar ardáin. Chuir ardán amháin cos car fhograí i nGaeilge toisc nach bhféadfadh leo a chinntiú go raibh sé ceart go leor agus gan fuath nuair nach raibh modhnóir acu le Gaeilge.

“Ní chóir glacadh leis i stát dátheangach go ndéanfadh mórchomhlachtaí cinsearacht ar ábhar díreach toisc é a bheith as Gaeilge, go háirithe nuair atá na comhlachtaí céanna ag baint tairbhe amach as ár gcóras flaithiúlach cánach.

“Tá sé i gceist agam an ceist seo a ardú arís leis na gcomhlachtaí siúd mar Chathaoirleach ar Choiste Oireachtais na Gaeilge, toisc go gcuireann sé isteach ar shaoirse cainte agus ar dheiseanna gnó do Ghaeilgeoirí.

“É sin ráite, tá sé beagáinín iomarcach go mbeadh an Coimisiún Eorpach ag cur an mileán ar an easpa modhnóireachta ar ábhar Gaeilge, nuair arb é leithscéal an Aire Martin féin gan modhnóireacht ar ábhar Gaeilge a chinntiú, leithscéal a ghlac muid le dea-intinn ag an am, ná go mbeadh sé mí-oiriúnach dá teanga ar leith de chuid an AE a roghnú leo féin agus muid ag cur dlí an AE i bhfeidhm.

“Ba mhiste liom míniú a fháil freisin ar an cúis gur thagair siad don easpa ‘Gaelic speaking moderators’ nuair arbh í ainm an teanga oifigiúil de chuid an Aontas Eorpach i mBéarla ná ‘Irish’ seachas ‘Gaelic’.

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