Twitter will reportedly take a slightly more proactive approach in trying to tackle racist abuse on the platform by actively reviewing tweets instead of just responding when tweets are reported to them.
And that sounds like a solid step in the right direction, until we see the Times’ report that this will only be done for “about 50 of the most high-profile black players”. And that makes the entire policy change hilariously inadequate.
Exclusive - Twitter staff to make special checks on accounts of 50 top players to monitor any racist abuse: https://t.co/JOGAwosvzm— Martyn Ziegler (@martynziegler) August 22, 2019
How does one even determine the top 50? And why just black footballers? Is there a minimum follower count needed to receive Twitter’s active racist abuse protection? Sure, tweets aimed at Paul Pogba will be monitored. But would Tammy Abraham, one of the recent high profile cases to lead us to this policy change, even qualify with just a little over 150k followers? Would Reading’s Yakou Méïté, another recent case, even register at Twitter HQ with just 6911 or is he not “high-profile” enough?
And let’s not even get into the abhorrent abuse aim at non-athletes, not to mention the non-racist abuse that’s so rife on social media.
If this is a first step, it needs to be followed by many more. Do better, Twitter.
Racism isn't only experienced by black people. Racism isn't only experienced by top footballers. Racism isn't the only form of abuse doled out every minute of every day on this travesty of a platform. Shame on you, @twitter. pic.twitter.com/wLw4SVJ9la— Chelsea Youth (@chelseayouth) August 22, 2019
This is vehemently not a solution. It merely sends a message that Twitter will address racism against you if you are famous enough. That's self-protection, not action. https://t.co/fEZ7pYToCI— Daniel Storey (@danielstorey85) August 22, 2019