Hours after England's loss, three Black players - Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho, and Bukayo Saka, who had missed England’s penalties on Sunday - suffered a cascade of racist abuse on social media.
Fans have been using emojis depicting monkeys and bananas along with making racist comments on posts underneath photographs of the players on their personal Instagram accounts.
The comments on Saka’s instagram atm. Absolutely shocking pic.twitter.com/D39p9Nx1CP— ᴮᵉⁿ🇬🇧 (@BenBaker___) July 11, 2021
However, many users who reported the racially abusive comments were shocked to find that the use of such emojis and the N-word did not violate the terms of service.
you’re an absolute joke @instagram - monkey emoji on a black person’s comments section and it doesn’t go against your guidelines? i don’t care if it was automated, either fix the automation or review it manually pic.twitter.com/Mu46W5oKRW— angus (@ngusvanderslott) July 11, 2021
Meanwhile, other social media giants like Facebook and Twitter stated that they were scrambling to take down racially abusive comments about the three players.
A Twitter spokesperson on Monday stated that “The abhorrent racist abuse directed at England players last night has absolutely no place on Twitter”.
“In the past 24 hours, through a combination of machine learning-based automation and human review, we have swiftly removed over 1,000 Tweets and permanently suspended a number of accounts for violating our rules — the vast majority of which we detected ourselves proactively using technology”.
Facebook in a statement mentioned that it had “quickly removed comments and accounts directing abuse at England’s footballers last night and we’ll continue to take action against those that break our rules”.
Meanwhile, the three players have also been receiving immense support from the sports community and politicians around the globe after they missed the penalties leading to their team’s defeat against Italy in the Euro 2020 final.