There is an uproar in the UK over a flock of racist social media postings aimed at three black members of the English Football team who failed to score on penalty kicks in yesterday’s loss to Italy. The three. Marcus Rashford, Jason Sancho and Bukayo Saka were the subject of numerous racist posts, which critics say remained on the social media sites too long before being taken down by the internet companies. At least two people whose social media sites contained racist messages claimed their sites had been hacked. One of them, a commercial building manager, Andrew Bone, was suspended by his employer.
Prince William this morning said he was sickened by racist abuse of the England team, describing vile slurs at players as ‘totally unacceptable’. William, who was at the game Sunday, called for those behind the messages to be punished. The Duke of Cambridge, said the remarks had to be stamped out for good. He said: ‘I am sickened by the racist abuse aimed at England players after last night’s match. ‘It is totally unacceptable that players have to endure this abhorrent behaviour. It must stop now and all those involved should be held accountable.’
The tweets have triggered calls for stricter government controls over the social media sites. In its defence Twitter messaged, “’In the past 24 hours, through a combination of machine learning based automation and human review, we have swiftly removed over 1,000 Tweets and permanently suspended a number of accounts for violating our rules – the vast majority of which we detected ourselves proactively using technology. ‘We will continue to take action when we identify any Tweets or accounts that violate our policies.”
Julian Knight, chairman of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, said: ‘The racist abuse of England players online is repellent and vile. ‘Perpetrators should be getting a knock on the door from the police and facing the full force of the law. ‘Social media companies once alerted to this abuse have an acute responsibility to immediately take it down.