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Bundesliga Players Read Out Their Own Social Media Abuse In Powerful New Video

Bundesliga Players Read Out Their Own Social Media Abuse In Powerful New Video

Bundesliga players and German internationals have taken part in a powerful video where they draw attention to social media abuse by reading out messages directed at themselves.

Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos and RB Leipzig defender Dayot Upamecano are involved in the hard-hitting video, which is being shared by players and football clubs with the message 'Unite Against Hate'.

"I hope you die in hell," Kroos reads in English, as the message appears on screen with the username blocked out.

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France international Upamecano reads two disgusting posts directed at him: "I hope you die, you f***ing African. F***ing bastard." Another states: "You're the f***ing Berlin Wall. A prisoner remembers. One day you will fall. F*** your mother!"

Each message is delivered with the player staring down the camera as they are read out.

Messages of hate, particularly of racial abuse, have been increasing on social media. Premier League footballers such as Wilfried Zaha, Reece James and several Manchester United players have been sharing the horrific insults they have suffered.

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Clearly this is a worldwide problem and the messages directed at German international Ron-Robert Zieler are incredibly chilling.

"We know where you live and where your kids go to kindergarten," claims one threat.

"Be like Enke and throw yourself in front of a train," reads another, a reference to the Robert Enke, the former Germany goalkeeper who committed suicide in 2009.

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The video has been created by the Berlin-based players' agency Sports360 as a direct response to hate speech and bullying online.

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"Cyber bullying is a problem that affects our entire society," said Kroos, the 2014 World Cup winner, on the purpose behind the video.

"What some people allow themselves to do behind anonymous profiles is way below the belt, sometimes it's even criminal."

"Social media platforms have to find a way to abolish anonymity on the net... Everyone who has a profile should show their face."

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Social media companies have come under increasing pressure to take responsibility for the abusive, threating and discriminatory posts which appear on their platforms.

This video finishes with the message: "We value your opinion. But hate speech is not an opinion.

"There is a human behind each screen. Let us #UniteAgainstHate"

Topics: Dayot Upamecano, Toni Kroos, Germany, Social Media, Bundesliga

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Alex Reid

Alex Reid is a writer at SPORTbible who’s previously strung words together for FourFourTwo, Boxing News, The Guardian and, yes, Cruise International (it’s about big ships, not Tom). Interests range from football and boxing to real sports like WWE and darts. He is not a cage fighter.