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Online abuse of athletes increased at 2023 World Championships - study

30 de Diciembre de 2023 a las 13:25

Photo courtesy of Aleksandra Szmigiel, Reuters
Article courtesy of Rohith Nair, Reuters
TORONTO. - More than half the online abuse of athletes at this year's World Athletics Championships in Budapest was of racist or sexualised nature, World Athletics said in a report published on Friday.
The sport's governing body said it had safeguarding measures in place at the Aug. 18-28 event which analysed nearly 450,000 posts and comments on social media in a bid to protect the 1,344 athletes competing.
The study said racist abuse had increased by 14% compared to the 2022 championships in Oregon. Two athletes out of the 1,344 monitored received 44% of all accounted abuse between them.
The study also said that social media platform X, formerly Twitter, was the preferred channel for abusers, with almost 90% of detected abuse -- a 500% relative increase compared to 2022.
"Athletes should not have to accept abuse as an inevitable consequence of being on these social media platforms," World Athletics CEO Jon Ridgeon said in a statement.
"We are the number one Olympic sport and have a responsibility to protect our athletes, on and off the field of play.
"So as we enter an Olympic year, with the extra attention that brings, we are seeking urgent meetings with these platforms to achieve a greater level of enforcement and safeguarding for our athletes."
The study said male athletes faced an increase in abuse, with a gender split of 51% targeting men and 49% aimed at women.