Racism Running Rampant On Twitter

While the “Kill Zimmerman” account that everyone is talking about today is shocking, should we really be surprised to see this on Twitter, as it follows on the heels of racist Muamba and Hunger Games tweets? The real question is – where will it end?

Earlier this week we told you about Liam Stacey being sentenced to 56 days in prison for posting offensive comments about footballer Fabrice Muamba. And there’s (what appears to be) a Texas man who posted similar Muamba tweets and has been posting racist tweets for quite some time now.

Then there was the completely strange backlash around the Hunger Games’ casting of Amandla Stenberg, Dayo Okeniyi and Lenny Kravitz as Rue, Thresh and Cinna, respectively. It appears some readers were up in arms over the characters being portrayed by Black actors.

But that was all child’s play compared to what’s happening now. We now have an anonymous account and celebrities like Spike Lee and Roseanne Barr (who should understand the power of social media and know better) calling for folks to independently, and outside of what U.S. law dictates, track down George Zimmerman and kill him for killing 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. Mind you, the only account explicitly stating to “kill him” is the “Kill Zimmerman” account, but what do folks expect will happen if this man is hunted down and found by a group of keyed-up kids?

This situation is frightening and leaves us with more questions than answers – the biggest one being: Is it right to grab those racist reins and direct all of the fear and hate, so easily found in the vast and eerily anonymous online space, toward revenge?

And where will it end?

(No Racism image from Shutterstock)

@MaryCLong maryclong@digitalmediaghost.com Mary C. Long is Chief Ghost at Digital Media Ghost. She writes about everything online and is published widely, with a focus on privacy concerns, specifically social sabotage.
Publish date: March 30, 2012 https://stage.adweek.com/digital/racism-running-rampant-on-twitter/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT