Thanks to a viral petition, ministers are due to debate a new law that would make it mandatory to provide verified ID to open a new social media account.
Support for three England footballers is flooding social media after they received huge amounts of racial abuse following Sunday’s Euro 2020 final against Italy.
Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho all missed penalties which resulted in England losing the tournament, and they’ve since been heavily trolled on social media.
But what if there was a way to stop this? A viral petition claims to have the answer, and it involves making ID a legal requirement to open a new social media profile.
Petition to make ID mandatory for social media accounts goes viral
An official parliamentary petition to make verified ID a requirement for opening a social media account has gone viral on social media this week.
It was started by British reality star Katie Price in response to racism that the three England footballers received following the Euro 2020 final against Italy on Sunday.
At the time of writing this, it currently has 611,000 signatures and aims to make it a legal requirement to provide a verified form of identification when opening a social media account.
If the account belongs to a person under the age of 18, the petition states that the account must be verified with the ID of a parent or guardian.
How could it work?
Under current social media regulations, all you need to create an account on sites like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter is a name, email address and password.
This means that as long as you keep creating more email addresses, you can essentially have as many different social media profiles on the same platform as you like.
Having multiple profiles becomes problematic when it comes to trolling, as people are able to create more than one account and spread hate online.
Making ID mandatory to open a social media account could stop this harmful activity by only allowing a single person to have one account on each platform.
Also, this would provide traceability if an offense occurs on social media, essentially making it easier for any harmful activity to be punished.
Twitter users support the petition
People have been expressing their support for the petition on Twitter.
One person wrote: “One thing we must do. It is now time for all social media accounts to be verified with official ID of account owner. Otherwise it’s just an unregulated cesspit. It will also weaken divisive politics. Silence the hate.”
“Make it mandatory to link an ID to a social media account and watch 99% of these racist comments disappear,” said another.
Singer James Arthur added: “ID verification to set up any sort of social media account seems like a no brainer to me? Why are we still letting t***ers online hurl abuse at anyone they please without any repercussions? It’s a no brainer to me. Verify yourself or you can’t use the app. What are we doing here.”
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