UK govt sets out action to stop online racist abuse in football

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For the first time, the Government will amend legislation to extend the use of Football Banning Orders so online abusers can be banned from stadiums for up to 10 years…reports Asian Lite News

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has set out action to tackle online racist abuse in football following the abhorrent social media attacks on black England players after the Euro 2020 final.

For the first time, the Government will amend legislation to extend the use of Football Banning Orders so online abusers can be banned from stadiums for up to 10 years, in the same way violent thugs are barred from grounds, Downing Street has announced.

The government, Premier League and football authorities will work together to help tackle all aspects of online abuse footballers are experiencing, ahead of the Online Safety Bill coming into force, it said.

“I was appalled by the abhorrent abuse directed towards a number of our footballers in the aftermath of Sunday’s game. More must be done to prevent people being bullied and trolled online,” Johnson said.

“We are introducing legislation that will force social media companies to take responsibility and action where this vile behaviour exists on their platforms or face substantial financial penalties if they fail in their duty to do so,” he said.

He also said that the government is working closely with the football and police authorities to “ensure we can track and take action against online abusers and will ban them from football grounds in the same way we would if they had committed these offences on our streets.”

Prime Minister recently met with executives from a number of social media companies in Downing Street to urge them to do more to get on top of online abuse.

“Enough is enough, it’s time to clean up social media,” Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said. “I’ve heard repeatedly from footballers about the devastating impact of racist abuse flooding their social media all hours of the day. It is clear it has a profound impact on them and their young fans.”

He said the tech firms know what is coming down the track with the tough new Online Safety laws but must use their ingenuity and considerable resources to stop this racist online abuse now, he added.

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