Football star Thierry Henry quits social media for racism | Racism News

Sportsman says the online behavior is “ too toxic to ignore ” as he calls on social media giants to speak to guilty anonymous account holders.

Former France international Thierry Henry said on Friday he would deactivate his social media accounts to protest the platforms for not taking action against anonymous account holders guilty of racism and bullying online.

Former Arsenal and Barcelona striker Henry, who has 15 million followers on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, said platforms need to tackle these issues with the same effort they are making to remove material that infringes copyright.

“Starting tomorrow morning, I will be retiring from social media until those in power are able to regulate their platforms with the same vigor and ferocity that they do now when you break the law. copyright, ”Henry said in a statement.

“The sheer volume of racism, intimidation and mental torture that results from it to individuals is too toxic to ignore. There MUST be some accountability.

“It’s far too easy to create an account, use it to intimidate and harass harmlessly, and remain anonymous. Until this changes, I will deactivate my accounts on all social platforms. Hope this will happen soon. “

England football governing bodies last month declared Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to be ‘havens for abuse’ and urged social media companies to tackle the problem following racist messages directed at players.

Oliver Dowden, secretary of state for the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sports (DCMS), said no one should be forced to deactivate their social media accounts due to abuse.

“Social media companies need to do more to tackle this and we are introducing new laws to hold platforms to account,” he said.

“It’s complex and we have to get it right, but I am absolutely committed to tackling racist abuse online.”

Last month, Instagram announced a series of measures to tackle online abuse, including removing the accounts of people who send abusive messages and developing new controls to help reduce the abuse people see.

Twitter said in 2019 that “despicable content has no place on our service” after taking action in more than 700 football-related “abuse and hateful behavior” cases in Britain in two weeks and pledged to continue his efforts to curb the problem.

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