FIFA, UEFA join English clubs in social media boycott

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ISTANBUL

FIFA will join English football clubs’ four-day boycott of social media, the world football’s governing body announced on Friday.

“FIFA supports the initiative from English football to call out discriminatory and other offensive abuse on social media. This has no place in football or society more generally and we strongly condemn it,” FIFA said in a statement.

“We believe that authorities and social media companies should take real and effective steps to put an end to these abhorrent practices because it’s getting worse all the time and something needs to be done – and done quickly – to put a stop to it,” the statement added.

The UEFA, European football’s governing body, is also taking part in the boycott to show solidarity in the fight against online abuse.

The boycott aims to highlight that social media firms should do more to erase online discrimination, hate, and cyberbullying. The social media silence will start on Friday until late Monday evening.

The English Football Association and both men’s and women’s professional football clubs in English tiers such as the Premier League, English Football League, Barclays FA Women’s Super League, and Women’s Championship will shut their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts temporarily as part of the boycott.

In February, the football association sent an open letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg, requesting that offensive and racist posts or messages be “filtered and blocked before being sent or posted.”

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