Because of the Internet, nearly everything global is available locally -- including the bad stuff.
That's one reason those who monitor online sites devoted to promoting hate and terrorism are concerned about the proliferation of such websites, forums, blogs and social network pages.
More than 14,000 such sites now exist -- up from 11,500 last year, said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center and director of the center's Digital Terrorism and Hate Project.
"We have a subculture of hate online," Cooper said Monday during a media briefing at the Henderson offices of Greenspun Media Group. "Every terrorist group has an Internet component."
Cooper was in town to share the results of "Digital Terrorism and Hate," an annual report issued by the Los Angeles-based center. The 13th annual report analyzes the spread of prejudice and terrorism online.
Before the media briefing, Cooper had spoken to local law enforcement representatives about the report, which he called "basically a snapshot of who's doing what on the Internet."
The Wiesenthal Center monitors sites run by groups including neo-Nazis, al-Qaida and others that promote hate or acts of violence. Such groups are increasingly using mainstream sites such as Facebook and YouTube to promote racism, homophobia and Islamophobia and to recruit young people, Cooper said.
They even produce their own music and online games. Some sites go so far as to provide instructions for making explosives and cellphone detonators.
Using the Internet, such groups can easily target potential recruits.
"You don't have to come to any meetings ... but if you click here, you could learn how to deploy as a terrorist," Cooper said.
The center made "a commitment to follow what the extremists were doing," he said.
It also alerts site managers about groups or individuals who post items that violate terms-of-service agreements, which often prohibit bigotry, he said. Some sites, such as Facebook, work to quickly remove bigoted web pages. But others quickly go up.
Cooper's Las Vegas visit coincided with the Sunday death of Osama bin Laden, al-Qaida terrorist and mastermind of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Researchers from the center have begun putting together online chatter about the death, Cooper said.
Online sites that supported bin Laden have been responding with disbelief, Cooper said.
"I imagine in the next couple of hours ... it'll change from 'He can't really be dead,' by and large, to 'We have to get revenge,' " he said.
Contact reporter Lynnette Curtis at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0285.