ESR6 Ina Weber

University of Antwerp
Supervised by Prof. H. Vandebosch, Prof. K. Poels, Dr. S. Pabian
I research how to counter online hate speech through technological interventions.

Project Synopsis

Project title: Countering online hate speech through technological interventions.

The spread of hate speech in digital spaces such as social media platforms and comment sections on news websites remains a significant problem and contributes to the polarisation of society and the normalisation of hate in online interactions. My PhD project takes a proactive approach to counter this problem by developing a technological intervention to prevent hate speech. This intervention shall complement existing ones, which are mostly aimed at bystanders or victims, by specifically addressing the perpetrators of online hate. In the first stage of the project, I have investigating risk factor that drive users to post hate speech. Building on these insights and input from co-design workshops, I will develop an intervention prototype. This prototype will be tested in regard to user acceptance and efficacy in lab and field studies and analysed from a human rights perspective. 


Ina is a PhD Candidate at the University of Antwerp interested in how users interact with and make sense of technology and how user perspectives reflect onto the design and development of technology. Before beginning her PhD journey, Ina has worked as research assistant in a Facebook-funded project on hate speech moderation, for which she compared user perspectives on human and algorithmic content moderators, and as a lecturer in digital content production and quantitative research methods. Ina holds a Master of Arts degree in Media, Culture and Society from Erasmus University Rotterdam.


  • ESR 6 (Ina Weber) Paper in progress: Risk factors for online hate offending: A socioecological perspective.
  • ESR 6 (Ina Weber) Paper in progress: Discussing digital affordances as risk factors for online hate offending and potential intervention strategies
  • ESR 6 (Ina Weber) gave a workshop titled “Discussing expert perspectives on technological interventions to prevent online aggression” at the World Anti Bullying Forum 2021 in Stockholm.
  • ESR 6 (Ina Weber) will present her Delphi study “Ask the experts: Applying the Delphi method to determine risk factors and create an ecological model of online hate perpetration” at the ICA Annual Conference 2022 in Paris,
  • ESR 6 (Ina Weber) will present her Delphi study in a panel “Multi-Level Perspectives on Online Hate Speech: Digital, Ideological, and Perceptual Underpinnings of Toxic Online Communication” together with Laura Dellagiacoma and Vladimir Bojarskich at the DGPS 2022 Congress in Hildesheim,
  • ESR 6 (Ina Weber) will present her research on social identity, gender and content moderation (“Who can post what? How identity and social influence impact perceptions of online content moderation”) at the ECREA 2022 9th European Communication Conference in Aarhus,



Google Scholar:

Weber, Ina, Laban, Aquina, Masullo, Gina. M., Gonçalves, João, Torres da Silva, Marisa, & Hofhuis, Joep. (September, 2020). International perspectives on what’s considered hateful or profane online. Center for Media Engagement.

Gonçalves, J., Weber, I., Masullo, G. M., Torres da Silva, M., & Hofhuis, J. (2021). Common sense or censorship: How algorithmic moderators and message type influence perceptions of online content deletion. New Media & Society.

Masullo, Gina M., Gonçalves, João, Weber, Ina, Laban, Aquina, Torres da Silva, Marisa, and Hofhuis, Joep. (June, 2021). How the public views deletion of offensive comments. Center for Media Engagement.