New technology helps. New features on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube make it far easier for global "jihadi entrepreneurs" to share articles, news, and videos.
"The newer technologies lowered the bar for participation, making the involvement of low-level or non-jihadis in the online conversation a new feature of the global jihadi movement," the study says. "Those so inclined can talk about jihad all day on the Web, even if they are geographically dispersed. This was not possible beforehand."
In January, Twitter shut down @HSMPress (which was linked with Al Shabab, whose full name is Harakat al-Shabab al-Mujahidin) when it tweeted to its then-20,000 followers that it would kill French hostage Denis Allex. It followed with a tweet saying it had done just that. After the shutdown, though, @HSMPRESS1 popped up to fill its spot – its originator also apparently a resident of Somalia.