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Online hate speech targeting the England and Wales men's football teams during the 2022 FIFA World Cup

Cullen, Arron ORCID: and Williams, Matthew ORCID: 2023. Online hate speech targeting the England and Wales men's football teams during the 2022 FIFA World Cup. HateLab. Available at:

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This report presents an analysis of 847,370 social media posts directed towards England and Wales men’s national football players during the 2022 FIFA World Cup. The findings provide insights into the nature, prevalence and drivers of online hate speech targeting players on social media during the competition. Using HateLab's award-winning algorithms for detecting hate speech, a total of 198 posts were identified as either racist, homophobic or transphobic. While this finding highlights the ongoing issue of online abuse directed at professional football players, it is also noteworthy that these hateful messages were outnumbered by 362,163 posts containing positive messages in support of the home nations teams. The majority of hate posts identified in this study remain online, indicating that platform moderation processes remain ineffective. Non-removal solutions, such as the use of community based counter-speech, remain an effective but underused tool in the fight against online hate speech.

Item Type: Monograph (UNSPECIFIED)
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Publisher: HateLab
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 4 April 2023
Date of Acceptance: 4 April 2023
Last Modified: 10 Feb 2024 02:17

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