Users behind anonymous social media accounts who sent racist abuse to Premier League players have been identified and their details will be passed to police, following an online hate investigation this month.
A joint investigation by Quest, a sports integrity investigation and advisory company, and Signify, a data science company, revealed how users in the UK abused players and presenters during preparation for the last day of the Premier League. season.
A report has revealed that 14 Premier League players have been victims of abusive behavior and the evidence will be forwarded to the UK Football Police Unit and the Professional Footballers Association.
“You can take the lead, you can unmask people, you can hold the abusers who undermine football to account,” Quest manager Sir Mark Rowley said.
“Sometimes what I hear in the media sounds like a hint of desperation. It doesn’t have to be, we can win, we can hold them to account and we can change the environment. “
The owners of 10 accounts have been identified as racially abusing a Premier League player: three accounts created in Asia, three accounts in Africa, two accounts in the Middle East and two accounts in the UK.
In one case, an offensive account descriptor – which is known to Sky Sports News – stay active on Twitter.
Analysis of 345,000 posts around the last day of the Premier League season revealed 69 posts from 61 accounts of direct discrimination or other abuse directed against players and their families.
All accounts were reported with EPL club affiliation ranging from fan to participant and 51 of 61 account holders were identified.
“We all know social media platforms are trying, and they are doing a number of things to try to improve the situation, but they can do more,” said Jonathan Hirshler, CEO of Signify.
“While tweets can be deleted fairly quickly, some of the accounts behind those tweets are left in place. The account holders behind these can go on and send more abuse, without any restrictions. “
In the 10 days leading up to the last round of matches, the report found that there was a “noticeable increase in reported discriminatory messages, despite an overall decline in the last round of matches (compared to previous rounds). “
Sky Sports News reached out to Twitter for comment.
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