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Zaha: Racist abuse has left me scared to use social media


CRYSTAL Palace winger Wilfried Zaha has called on social media platforms Instagram and Twitter to do more to prevent people suffering racist abuse after admitting he is scared to look at his direct messages.

The Ivory Coast international was sent racist messages and imagery on July 11 and a 12-year-old boy was arrested in connection with the incident.

West Midlands Police have since released the individual under investigation, but Zaha wants social media sites to do more.

‘Even after I reported the abuse from the 12-year-old, I reported 50 accounts,’ the 27-year-old told CNN.

‘And I got racially abused after the stuff that I got before and it’s like, what happens after that account gets blocked? Then they just make a new one straight after.

‘I feel like with everything that we do in life, with everything we register to, we have to give some sort of ID, so why is it not the same with Instagram? Why is it not the same with Twitter?’

Zaha believes other black footballers are, like him, scared to use platforms such as Instagram and Twitter because of the comments they will receive from other users.

He also recounted the first time he faced abuse online and expressed his wish to make a difference in the fight against racism — something Palace manager Roy Hodgson suggested the winger has the character to do.

read also: Zaha urged to think carefully about Newcastle offer

‘I’ve had racial abuse all my life but it’s a thing where for right now, I’ve got a platform where I feel like if I can make a change, I’ll try,’ Zaha added.

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