As the government ramps up its rhetoric on social media safety in response to the racist abuse hurled at Rashford, Saka, and Sancho after the Euros final, new data from both the Centre for Countering Digital Hate and the Kick It Out equality campaign show that whilst the level of abuse has increased in the past year, the majority of it is coming from overseas. A point which Gareth Southgate also acknowledged on Monday.
Sanjay Bhandari, chairman of Kick It Out, revealed that roughly 70% of all abuse over the past two seasons came from foreign accounts, adding:
““These are not football fans…They are people who have never been inside an English football ground.”
The Centre for Countering Digital Hate, meanwhile, found 105 Instagram accounts had directed abuse towards England players after the final. BBC Newsnight’s investigation revealed the locations of 64 of those accounts, of which only 5 came from the UK. Clearly this is still a problem, yet it’s worth bearing in mind where most of the abuse originates when trying to legislate against it…