Twitter users stage virtual ‘walkout’ over company’s failure to tackle racism and harassment

High-profile Twitter users have joined a 48-hour “walkout” to protest the platform’s response to a series of antisemitic tweets by grime artist Wiley.

Twitter deleted dozens of Wiley’s posts and served him a temporary ban for violating its policy regarding hateful conduct, but critics claim the firm acted too slowly.

The musician was dropped by his management, while the Metropolitan Police is also investigating after receiving reports of antisemitism.

“The Met takes all reports of antisemitism extremely seriously,” the police force said in a statement. “The relevant material is being assessed.”

The 48-hour boycott will run from 9am on Monday, 27 July, according to political campaign group Labour Against Antisemitism.

“This is in protest at Twitter’s repeated failure to tackle antisemitism on the platform #NoSafeSpaceForJewHate,” the group tweeted.

Given the nature of the protest, it is impossible to quantify how many people are taking part. But the associated hashtag was Twitter’s most trending topic on Monday morning, and Twitter said there was almost 50,000 posts associated with it.

The Jewish Leadership Council, which is also taking part in the walkout, claimed that Twitter’s reaction to Wiley’s tweets is not an isolated incident.

“For years we have witnessed Jews and others being victimised on social media with little or no interference from the social media companies,” the JLC tweeted.

“These organisations have a responsibility to ensure hate is not allowed to be propagated.”

Home Secretary Priti Patel also called on social media companies to crack down on hateful content

“The antisemitic posts from Wiley are abhorrent,” she tweeted. “They should not have been able to remain on Twitter and Instagram for so lonf and I have asked them for a full explanation. Social media companies must act much faster to remove such appalling hatred from their platforms.”

Twitter did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the boycott.

In a statement following Wiley’s ban, Twitter said: “Abuse and harassment have no place on our service and we have policies in place – that apply to everyone, everywhere – that address abuse and harassment, violent threats, and hateful conduct. If we identify accounts that violate any of these rules, we’ll take enforcement action.”


Leave a Reply

This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.