Instagram admits mistake over moderating racist comments targeting England team players

July 16, 2021 | 2 minutes read

Instagram’s boss Adam Mosseri came out with an explanatory tweet stating Instagram’s moderation mistake over racist comments targeting footballer Bukayo Saka.

This comes after a series of racial attacks were made targeting the England Footballers Bukayo Saka, Marcus Rashford, and Jadon Sancho following the men’s Euro 2020 final. 

Adam Mosseri, Instagram’s boss said that content had “mistakenly” been identified as within the guidelines and should have been referred to human moderators instead. 

The issue has now been resolved, he further added. 

“We have the technology to try and prioritize reports and we were mistakenly marking some of these as benign comments, which they are absolutely not,” he told BBC News.

“Reports on these types of comments should [now] be reviewed properly.”

Adam Mosseri


View original tweet on Twitter. 

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport (DCMS) has assured “tough new laws” to compel social media giants to clamp down on racism. 

In another move, the Government is changing the football banning order regime to cover online racism, according to the PM. 

BBC tried running a test by reporting a comment containing several orangutan emojis on Saka’s Instagram.

After a few minutes, a notification was received saying that the platform’s technology, “found that this comment probably doesn’t go against our guidelines”.

BBC received no response when they requested further review of the matter in question. 

On Thursday, Saka commented on his Twitter account commenting on the abuse. 

“To the social media platforms… I don’t want any child or adult to have to receive the hateful and hurtful messages that me, Marcus, and Jadon have received this week,” he wrote.

“I knew instantly the kind of hate that I was about to receive and that is a sad reality that your powerful platforms are not doing enough to stop these messages.”

Bukayo Saka racism


While Mr. Mosseri made several more comments, there are still objectionable comments on Bukayo Saka’s and other players’ social media, which need to be removed.

This isn’t the first time that people of color had to face racism and were made to question their nationalism following such events.