Stan Collymore rejoins Twitter after 12 hour protest against apparent lack of action over death threats and racial abuse

Pundit's decision comes after Talksport moves to ban all reference to Twitter in support of the former England striker

Former England footballer Stan Collymore has rejoined Twitter as his campaign to have action taken against ‘trolls’ who are racially abusing a number of people on the social media site continues to gain momentum.

Sports radio station TalkSPORT, which Collymore regularly broadcasts for, announced on Wednesday night that they will no longer be mentioning the social media site or allowing their presenters to read out tweets sent in by listeners – something they have utilised to their benefit in the past.

Collymore had retweeted a number of racially abusive tweets to all of his 509,000-plus followers, with a number of fake or anonymous accounts messaging the former striker with hate mail after Collymore accused Liverpool’s Luis Suarez of diving for a penalty during last weekend’s 2-2 draw with Aston Villa.

The 43-year-old has since reactivated his account having removed himself from the site, amid calls for Twitter to do more in their attempts to take action against these so-called ‘trolls’ that take pleasure in abusing people from behind a screen and keyboard.

Speaking to Sky News about his abuse, Collymore said: “I've no problem with honestly held opinion. If people think I'm an idiot, they're more than welcome to say. They're also more than welcome, within the laws of the United Kingdom, to bring up my past.

“That is genuine use of freedom of speech. But freedom of speech means that if anyone walks past me now and calls me some of the things, or makes some of the threats (that have been made to me on Twitter), they would be arrested.

“The police are banging their heads against a brick wall, having to make requests to get reports and profiles processed. Six weeks later I'm still waiting.

“That means Twitter abuse operates in a bubble, a vacuum.”

Collymore has admitted his frustration with the lack of action against the site, claiming that a number of young users have no idea of the legal consequences that comes with the abuse he is receiving. He also believes that a number of financial factors is behind Twitter’s failure to act to what he sees as an adequate response.

“I believe that the number of active (Twitter) users is monetised, so they would much rather have a billion active users who can say whatever the hell they like, rather than spend money on algorithms, scripts, age verification, tying an account to a phone number, or a credit card, which would of course decrease the numbers,” he claimed.

The matter is nothing new for Collymore, who has been racially abused on Twitter before.

He had previously posted on his account: “In the last 24 hours I've been threatened with murder several times, demeaned on my race, and many of these accounts are still active. Why?

“I accuse Twitter directly of not doing enough to combat racist/homophobic /sexist hate messages, all of which are illegal in the UK.

“Several Police forces have been fantastic. Twitter haven't. Dismayed.”

He also admitted that he has been in direct contact with Staffordshire Police to report the abuse, and criticised Twitter for their lack of action in comparison.

He wrote: “Staffordshire Police coming, again. Just the 5th time. Pity twitter aren't interested.

“Police take all complaints seriously, whoever it is. I've waited 6 weeks for twitter to provide information to Police. Yet to respond.”

Collymore’s decision comes after TalkSPORT announced they will support the presenter by protesting against the social media site.

A statement released on Wednesday read: “TalkSPORT’s chief executive, Scott Taunton, has today written to Twitter to express the station’s dissatisfaction with Twitter’s apparent lack of support of presenter Stan Collymore following a series of abusive messages posted to the presenter on Twitter this weekend.

“In addition, the station is to stop promoting Twitter and its Twitter accounts until the station feels that Twitter is responding appropriately.  No Twitter mentions will appear on air on TalkSPORT, in print in SPORT Magazine or on TalkSPORT’s digital platforms.

“Collymore received a series of offensive messages – including death threats  and racists tweets - that were posted after he suggested Liverpool striker Luis Suarez cheated by diving during last Saturday's match against Aston Villa.  While a number of the tweets are subject to police investigation, Collymore accuses Twitter of not doing enough to combat the abuse.”

Explaining his decision to rejoin, Collymore wanted to highlight both support for his case and further abuse he has received, while he also wanted to address a national newspaper for their front page story on his past.

Collymore wrote: "I deactivated due to more racism/threats overnight which are being passed on, and to see if twitter's protocol works. We'll see!!

 

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Rocky road: Dwayne Johnson and Carla Gugino play an estranged husband and wife in 'San Andreas'
filmReview: In the face of all-round devastation, even Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson appears a little puny
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Bright lights, big city: Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles by dusk
books
Sport
Harry Kane makes Paul Scholes' Premier League team of the season
footballPaul Scholes on the best players, managers and goals of the season - and the biggest disappointments
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor