'Something needs to change': How sports clubs signed off for a social media boycott

The boycott began on Friday. Credit: PA

Major sports clubs, professionals and brands are uniting in a stand against online abuse with a social media boycott.

The boycott began at 3pm on Friday and will last across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and comes amid a rising tide of racist and sexist abuse aimed at sports stars on various platforms.

It will last until Monday at 11.59pm.

Here’s how some household names in sport signed off for the blackout.

Premier League champions Liverpool shared a tweet just before the boycott, saying “we must fight discrimination in all its forms”.

Manchester United said they “join clubs, players and organisations in this weekend’s social media boycott” and that “abuse and discrimination of any kind are not welcome”.

Arsenal Women simply wrote "enough is enough" in their final tweet before the boycott began.

Chelsea joined in too, tweeting: “We want social media companies to do more to prevent online discriminatory abuse.

“So we’re joining forces with other teams and organisations to boycott social media until Tuesday 4 May.”

Everton Women said it's "time for change" in their tweet, calling on social media companies to do more against online abuse.

Lower down the English football pyramid, Middlesbrough also signed off for the boycott with a message to demand “collective change”.

Tranmere Rovers, in League Two, “strongly supports” the boycott in the “ongoing fight” against discrimination.

Adidas, which sponsors a number of football clubs and has deals with Premier League footballers, retweeted Manchester United’s post, adding the words: “More must be done to prevent racist, discriminatory, and threatening abuse online.”

England and Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford, who has been a target of online racist abuse himself, backed the movement with his own tweet.

Meanwhile Rugby clubs are also taking part, with Wasps urging supporters to drop social media to tune in to England vs France instead.

The England and Wales Cricket Board shared a simple tweet with a graphic and the hashtag #StopOnlineAbuse.