Idris Elba has called for social media platforms to introduce an ID system to stamp out racists. The actor said that the platform’s anonymity often leads to people feeling safe enough to say things they wouldn’t in person, and he wants this changed.
Idris Elba has encouraged bigots to “say it with their name, not their username,” according to the actor. (Photo courtesy of WireImage)
Idris Elba has supported demands for social media firms to use more stringent verification IDs to combat racist trolls.
Following their penalty misses in the Euro 2020 final, Black England players Marcus Rashford, Bukayo Saka, and Jadon Sancho have been subjected to heinous levels of bigotry on social media.
It’s created a larger debate about how social media sites like Instagram and Twitter regulate their networks to guarantee that trolls are held responsible for any online abuse they post.
Katie Price, a former beauty model, started a petition last week that has garnered more than half a million signatures, urging the government to make it illegal for social media users to verify their identity.
‘People in the public eye are verified on social media, (symbolized by a blue tick), the process of verification compels them to verify their IDENTITY, so everyone knows WHO is speaking,’ Luther star Idris Elba said in an Instagram post on Sunday.
‘All users should be required to do this by social media firms. Currently, using social media is like to flying without needing to present identification.
‘That would never happen,’ says the narrator.
‘If cowards are being encouraged by a cloak of anonymity and secrecy, then social media is not a safe place,’ the British actor, 48, added. It’s an aircraft that enables passengers to wear their balaclavas.
‘If cowards want to spew racist vitriol, use your name instead of your pseudonym.’
‘Repost if you agree,’ he said in the caption. If you don’t, say less.’
Love Island singer Luke Trotman, on the other hand, didn’t appear to agree, saying, “Passports are expensive, and just 47% of Americans have one.” It’s unjust to keep people who don’t have one from using social media.’
‘However, you wouldn’t need a passport,’ one follower said. There’s no legitimate reason to not have your driver’s license, picture ID card, or birth certificate, and there’s no reason to not have those types of IDs, so it’s not at all unfair.’
Racism has been directed towards England’s Black players, notably Marcus Rashford (left) and Bukayo Saka (right). (Photo courtesy of PA)
Tinie Tempah, for example, echoed Idris’ views, adding, “I been speaking this talk brooo!” Alexandra Burke, who used a hand-clapping emoji to express her gratitude.
Katie started the petition when she was subjected to heinous bullying directed towards her mixed-race son Harvey, who has a variety of special needs.
‘Make it a legal obligation to submit a verified form of ID when establishing a new social media account,’ she said. Verify the account with the ID of a parent or guardian if the account belongs to a person under the age of 18 to avoid anonymous harmful behavior and provide traceability if an infraction happens.
‘My handicapped kid Harvey is my pride and joy. He’s also the kind and compassionate kid of someone who is often in the spotlight. The Online Harms Bill does not go far enough to make online abuse a particular criminal offense, as envisioned by “Harvey’s Law.”
Racism in the News
‘To make the legislation function, anonymity must be removed to guarantee that individuals cannot damage others by abusing internet platforms.’
‘Where a crime has been committed, the perpetrators should be readily recognized, reported to the authorities, and punished. We have seen the most heinous forms of abuse directed towards my handicapped kid, and we want to ensure that no one is able to hide behind their crime.’
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