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Professor Alice Roberts leaves Twitter after facing 'hate, bile and misogyny'

Time Team star follows Daisy Ridley and Millie Bobby Brown in leaving social media

Jacob Stolworthy
Thursday 20 June 2019 10:52 BST
Professor Alice Roberts introduces new show Britain's Most Historic Towns

TV scientist Professor Alice Roberts is ”taking a holiday” from Twitter after receiving messages of “hate, bile and misogyny”.

The biological anthropologist said she has faced abuse in response to her messages about gender.

Roberts, who has appeared on TV shows Time Team and Britain’s Most Historic Towns, recently tweeted about the notion of binary gender and shared articles about sexual diversity in animals.

“I’m taking a holiday from Twitter for a while,” she wrote in her most recent post. ”I’ve argued for reason, compassion and empathy in discussions about sex and gender. That’s opened me up to more hate, bile and even misogyny than I’ve experienced before.”

She added: “I’m sad and shocked. Humans can be so much better than this.”

Roberts struck controversy on social media after posting a link to a Guardian feature inspired by a recent article featured in Nature about biologists believing the idea of to sexes to be inaccurate.

"The erasure of the sex class of female is really concerning to me so what is it that you think an article like this actually helps with?" asked one follower, to which Roberts replied: "Reason, tolerance and compassion are important to me. I don’t like seeing science being used as an excuse for bigotry and the oppression of minorities."

Another Twitter user wrote: "Alice Roberts has succumbed to the trans madness as well" with another using her comments as an example of science going "down the toilet".

Professor Roberts is one of a string of women in the public eye who have quit social media following abuse.

Star Wars actors Daisy Ridley and Kelly Marie Tran and Stranger Things star Millie Bobby Brown have all left Twitter after being trolled, while MPs including Luciana Berger, Diane Abbott, Paula Sherriff and Melanie Onn have spoken out about the abuse they have received online.

Additional reporting by Agencies

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