Paul Pogba in a 'United Against Racism' t-shirt
Manchester United’s Paul Pogba is one of a number of players to have been racially abused on social media

Online racist abuse is “spiralling out of control”, according to a leading anti-cyberbullying charity.

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson has given control of his Twitter account to Cybersmile to raise awareness of the impact of abuse.

The charity shared an interview with Ian Wright where the ex-England striker described the racist abuse and death threats he has been sent online.

Some Premier League bosses have called for a sport-wide social media boycott.

It is understood discussions have taken place between Premier League clubs over a league-wide boycott.

“Racial hatred online is spiralling out of control. It’s a weekly, and even daily, occurrence now” the charity wrote on Henderson’s Twitter account.external-link

“We need to remember that there are real people with real feelings behind social media accounts.

“We are people not profiles.”

Championship sides Swansea and Birmingham, and Scottish champions Rangers, are taking part in a week-long boycott of social platforms.

Tottenham said they would hold a review into “the most effective action moving forward” with social media after forward Son Heung-min was abused at the weekend.

Instagram said in a statement that the abuse was “abhorrent” and it had removed a number of comments from Son’s Instagram account.

Football chiefs wrote to Facebook and Twitter in February to underline changes they want to see.


Alistair Magowan, BBC Sport

Clubs have been discussing a league-wide social media boycott, and there are frustrations concerning the speed by which social media companies respond to incidents of abuse.

But some have questioned whether a boycott would only amount to a symbolic gesture and whether it would be better to focus on more meaningful change such as better reporting mechanisms and influencing the online safety bill.

Dialogue with social media companies will continue, but if any boycott is to occur, it is felt it would have more impact if all clubs bought into it rather than acting alone.

History would suggest that gaining that type of broad agreement may prove difficult, but there is certainly a desire from clubs to improve the situation given that players are now being abused on a weekly basis.

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