Brentford FC will be joining in a football-wide social media boycott that will start at 3pm today, Friday 30 April. The boycott was announced by the football authorities last week and we confirmed that we will switch off all social media channels in line with others across the game. This will start this afternoon and run until the end of Monday 3 May.
We have been appalled to see the continued abuse of players, particularly racist abuse, on social media platforms. Abuse has been a scourge of the medium for many years and in recent months, the frequency of this abuse has increased and there has been an exponential rise in discriminatory language sent directly to participants in our game. Our hope is that a wide-ranging withdrawal will have an impact on behaviour on social media platforms.
What change do we want to see?
We are asking for significant action from social media companies, including:
- Apply preventative filtering and blocking measures to stop discriminatory abuse being sent or seen
- Be accountable for safety on platforms andprotect users by implementing effective verification
- Ensure real-life consequences for online discriminatory abuse: ban perpetrators,stop account re-registration and support law enforcement
- A warning message to be displayed if a user writes an abusive message and need to enter personal data if they wish to send the message
- Platforms to have robust, reliable and quick measures in place if abusive material is sent or posted
- Transparent quarterly reports on the work social media companies are doing, internally and externally, to eradicate abuse on their platforms
We are also urging the UK Government to ensure its Online Safety Bill will bring in strong legislation to make social media companies more accountable for what happens on their platforms.
The Club will not post on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok or LinkedIn during the boycott. There will also be no video posted on our YouTube channel during this period. We also invite all Brentford FC personnel to not post on the platforms during this period. Our website and app will continue to share Brentford FC news with fans and coverage of our game against Watford tomorrow, Saturday 1 May, will be available there. With our YouTube channel posting no new content, there will be no episode of The Warm Up this week.