Ama­zon needs to act now to stop hate speech

Portsmouth News - - OPTIONS -

Hate speech should have no place in our so­ci­ety, and es­pe­cially on­line. With so­cial me­dia plat­forms, their membership and au­di­ence grow­ing ex­po­nen­tially, the mon­i­tor­ing of hate speech and cy­ber bul­ly­ing has fallen be­hind. One­new­sout­le­tre­vealed­how hats which read ‘black lives don’t mat­ter’ were be­ing sold on Ama­zon. The con­glom­er­ate firm apol­o­gised and claimed the hats were be­ing sold by a third party.

In this day and age, that is no ex­cuse for al­low­ing hate speech to be pro­jected from their web­site.

Closer to home, the Portsmouth Down Syn­drome As­so­ci­a­tion (PDSA) has joined the #NoPlaceFor­Hate cam­paign which is urg­ing the same com­pany, Ama­zon, to do more to pre­vent T-shirts pro­mot­ing Down Syn­drome hate speech.

As one of the big­gest web­sites in the world which many peo­ple use on a reg­u­lar ba­sis, it is ex­tremely dam­ag­ing for them to al­low this type of bul­ly­ing to oc­cur.

PDSA chair, Rachael Ross, whose son Max has Down Syn­drome, told ‘The T-shirts are ex­tremely of­fen­sive and say things like “let’s make Down Syn­drome ex­tinct”.

‘The slo­gans are dam­ag­ing and of­fen­sive to fam­i­lies and peo­ple with Down Syn­drome be­cause that would mean they aren’t here which is a very up­set­ting thing to say and have on a T-shirt.’

How­ever this is not the first time such T-shirts have been sold on the web­site and they were found as early as March this year.

An on­line pe­ti­tion has col­lected 60,000 sig­na­tures call­ing on Ama­zon to put an end to the items once and for all.

But it should not take a pe­ti­tion to re­move such items, it should be com­mon sense and de­cency.

If they Ama­zon con­tinue to fail to mon­i­tor what sell­ers are put­ting up and pro­mot­ing on their web­site, they are tread­ing a dan­ger­ous path.

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