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SOCIAL MEDIA BOYCOTT: Football unites against discrimination

 

Football’s governing bodies have begun a social media boycott in response to persistent discrimination and abuse suffered by those within the sport.

The FA, Premier League, EFL, FA Women's Super League, FA Women's Championship, PFA, LMA, PGMOL, Kick It Out and the FSA have all united for the boycott which finishes at 11:59pm on Monday May 3rd.

For the blackout, all clubs from the organisations involved have switched off their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.

There have been a growing number of instances where players, managers and match officials have been subject to abuse online and this project aims to influence social media companies to tighten restrictions.

 

Premier League Statement

 

The Premier League had announced the boycott in partnership with the other associations that are taking part in a statement on their website last week:

“This has been scheduled to take place across a full-fixture programme in the men's and women's professional game and will feature clubs across the Premier League, EFL, WSL and Women's Championship switching off their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.

“As a collective, the game recognises the considerable reach and value of social media to our sport. The connectivity and access to supporters who are at the heart of football remains vital.

“Boycott action from football in isolation will, of course, not eradicate the scourge of online discriminatory abuse, but it will demonstrate that the game is willing to take voluntary and proactive steps in this continued fight.”

 

History Of Abuse

 

Social media abuse has become more prevalent in recent years and a number of individuals have faced messages on several platforms.

Players such as Raheem Sterling, Paul Pogba, Mario Balotelli and Marcus Rashford have all been the subject of high profile abuse.

More recently, Newcastle United manager Steve Bruce received death threats online and Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Heung-Min Son was racially abused in the wake of his sides 3-1 loss to Manchester United.

United have since sanctioned six individuals, including three season ticket holders, two official members and one individual on the season ticket waiting list.

With recent protests over club ownership and the European Super League also tackling the issue of discrimination, many within the game hope this could be a turning point for the sport.


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