English football announces a total social media boycott in wake of online abuse!
The English football clubs will switch off their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts from 3 pm on Friday 30 April to 11.59 pm local time on Monday 3 May.
This comes in response to the discrimination and abuse aimed at players, pundits, and other members of the footballing community.
The decision was announced in a joint statement by the authorities including the Football Association, Premier League, English Football League, FA Women’s Super League, FA Women’s Championship, PFA (Professional Footballers’ Association), and Kick It Out.
“In response to the sustained discriminatory abuse received online by players and others connected to the game, English football will unite for a social media boycott from 15:00 BST on Fri 30 April to 23:59 BST on Mon 3 May,” the statement added.
In response to the sustained discriminatory abuse received online by players and others connected to the game, English football will unite for a social media boycott from 15:00 BST on Fri 30 April to 23:59 BST on Mon 3 May— Premier League (@premierleague) April 24, 2021
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In the joint letter, the organisations said that the boycott has been scheduled to take place “across a full fixture programme in the men’s and women’s professional game and will see clubs across the Premier League, EFL, WSL, and Women’s Championship switch off their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts”.
“Finally, while football takes a stand, we urge the UK government to ensure its Online Safety Bill will bring in strong legislation to make social media companies more accountable for what happens on their platforms, as discussed at the DCMS Online Abuse round table earlier this week,” the letter added.
The former Arsenal and France striker Thierry Henry was the first to announce that he was walking away from Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram until more is done to tackle the problem.
Henry, 43, posted a statement on all his social media accounts last month. His official Facebook page has 10 million followers while he has a further 2.7 million on Instagram and 2.3 million on Twitter.
The statement said: “From tomorrow (Saturday) morning I will be removing myself from social media until the people in power are able to regulate their platforms with the same vigour and ferocity that they currently do when you infringe copyright.
“The sheer volume of racism, bullying, and resulting mental torture to individuals is too toxic to ignore.
“There HAS to be some accountability.
“It is far too easy to create an account, use it to bully and harass without consequence, and still remain anonymous. Until this changes, I will be disabling my accounts across all social platforms.
“I’m hoping this happens soon.”
Marcus Rashford, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Raheem Sterling, and Tyrone Mings are a few among the players who have been targeted with racist abuse online.