Kabasele wants clubs to follow Watford’s lead in fighting online abuse

The Hornets, who were on Wednesday named London’s Community Club of the Year by the EFL on their 2021 Day of Action, have led the way in liaising with police and local authorities to ensure that there is a consequence of online abuse through their ‘We’ Campaign.

As players feel increasingly let down by social media companies over what has become almost daily incidents of racist abuse on their platforms, they have been left to lead the fight with the support of their clubs.

“Unfortunately it is the only thing that we can do because the social media platforms don’t do anything to prevent this,” Kabasele told Standard Sport.

“We have to worry about it. Because for the moment, we are the only ones who will take care about this problem seriously.”

Facebook and Instagram continually insist that they are working to combat online hate but there is anger within football at the slow pace of action, while the police find social media companies difficult to work with when it comes to identifying abusers.

Because of perceived lack of action being taken by social media companies, others must step up.

Watford launched their ‘We’ Campaign in 2019 after players were abused following their FA Cup semi-final win over Wolves at Wembley.

The club work closely with the hate crimes unit at Hertfordshire Constabulary in order to take more of a lead on tackling abuse on social media.

Kabasele himself has been a target of racial abuse, and found Watford to be a huge support.

“When I say that we are alone, the social media [companies] let us down, but I have to say that the club stood next to us through the ‘We’ Campaign,” said the defender.

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