Theresa May demands tougher action from social media firms over ‘vile’ abuse of women

Posted On: 
8th June 2018

The Prime Minister will demand that social media firms take firmer action to end the "vile" abuse aimed at women online.

Mrs May will demand the social media firms take a tougher stance on tackling abuse aimed at women
PA Images

The Prime Minister will call on world leaders attending the G7 summit in Canada to pressure tech firms into taking “serious action” to curb the “deeply worrying” problem.

Online giants like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram will be told that they must place the same priority on cracking down on harmful content aimed at women as they do with terrorist propaganda.

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It comes as Amnesty International UK reveal that one in five women online have faced some form on online abuse.

And a separate study found that one in four younger women aged between 11 and 21 had reported experiencing cyber-bullying, including threats of physical and sexual violence.

The Prime Minister will warn that the benefits of technology for advancing social change were “being undermined by vile forms of online violence, abuse and harassment”.

“What is illegal offline is illegal online and I am calling on world leaders to take serious action to deal with this, just like we are doing in the UK with our commitment to legislate on online harms such as cyber-stalking and harassment," she will say.

But she will pay tribute to the firms for taking “welcome” steps in stemming the flow of terrorist material being shared online.

“Online violence against women and girls should not be separated from offline violence, and the technology companies who are making welcome progress in banning and removing extremist content must be use the same methods to prioritise tackling this unacceptable and worrying trend.”

The Prime Minister will also use the summit to announce a £187m package to support education programmes for girl’s living in some of the world’s poorest areas.

She will say: “I am a passionate advocate of improving education for girls around the world.

“It is the right thing to do and it is in the global interest. That’s why the UK is leading the way in changing views, opening up opportunities for girls and bringing parity to the classroom.”