Swansea City has declared that the club, all of its players, and all of its employees would boycott social media for a week to put pressure on Facebook and Twitter in the fight against online discrimination.
Swansea City’s first-team and academy players will not share any material on social media for seven days beginning at 5 p.m. Thursday, and the club will not post on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat, YouTube, or TikTok. The boycott would include Swansea City Ladies, the club’s community trust, and senior administrative staff.
The Championship club has written to Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook, which owns Instagram, and Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter, demanding harsher penalties for those who engage in cowardly bullying that has unfortunately become all too normal.
Jamal Lowe is the third Swansea player in less than two months to face racist violence on Instagram last Friday. Dhanda called Facebook “selfish” and chastised the company’s inaction.
Swansea City Boycott Social Media: Clubs Statement
“We have had some of our players exposed to abhorrent bullying in the last seven weeks alone. It is right to stand up to behavior that is a stain on our sport and culture at large. It will always be unwavering in our respect for our players, staff, fans, and the collective trust that we proudly serve, and we are united as a club on this topic. We still want to stand in solidarity with players from other teams who have faced heinous bullying on social media sites. We hope that our firm stand will draw attention to the broader consequences of abuse.”
Trent Alexander-Arnold, Naby Keta, and Sadio Mané of Liverpool were exposed to online racist harassment on Tuesday, prompting their club to call for the best possible preventative action.
Swansea City Mindful How Social Media Affects Players Emotional Health
Swansea City said they were acutely mindful of how social media would affect the emotional health of players and staff. Club Swansea paid tribute to the English Football League’s sponsorship, though also criticizing the platforms’ “inaction” in an open letter.
“This is something we all feel deeply strongly about as a near and diverse community of players. They decided to take this stand. We once again call for those at the top of social media platforms to make the necessary reform now and in the future. It astounds me that we are still discussing bigotry and the exploitation of children. It astounds me that we are still discussing bigotry and violence of this magnitude. We are acutely aware of the stresses that exist in football at this age. These levels of violence should not be underestimated,” Grimes said of the boycott.
Bale Supports Boycott Fight
Gareth Bale publicly stated his support for a boycott to fight internet violence. Thierry Henry recently left social media, stating that he would not return until the businesses took bigotry and bullying seriously. Gareth Southgate has proposed that England’s players observe a social media lockout during the European Championships this summer. Vinai Venkatesham, Arsenal’s chief executive, has stated that the club would consider withdrawing its accounts on different websites. Other clubs will follow Swansea’s example if nothing is done to deter violence.
Championship clubs had their monthly meeting on Thursday. Dealing with bullying was high on the agenda.
In February, Facebook promised to take tougher measures to address the problem. Following Henry’s comments on “toxic” harassment, a company spokesperson said, “We don’t like homophobic abuse on Instagram. We delete it where we spot it. We took action on 6.6 million pieces of hate speech material on Instagram between October and December last year. 95 percent of which we discovered before anybody reported it to us.”
Swansea will not use social media to share information from Saturday’s match at Millwall or Tuesday’s match at Sheffield Wednesday. However, they will refresh their website.