A UK newspaper is being praised for naming and shaming social media users who left abusive comments about Swedish climate change activist Greta Thunberg.
Thunberg visited Bristol last week where she spoke to thousands of people and joined a protest calling for governments and global companies to work to address rising global temperatures.
As has come to be expected when the 17-year old activist joins an event, her appearance in Bristol drew online hate and abuse on the social media accounts of local media outlets.
In response, local paper Bristol Live has published a list of the full names of people who made violent remarks towards the teenager alongside their photographs.
Bristol Live explained that a number of the people on the list were “parents or grandparents” and some had even called for people on social media to ‘be kind’ following the death of TV presenter, Caroline Flack.
All of the people featured on the list appear to be men.
Researchers Camilla Nelson and Meg Vertigan have previously written about why Thunberg draws such intense reactions from men
“By attacking industrial capitalism, Thunberg is not only attacking the core beliefs and world view of certain sorts of men, but also their sense of masculine self-worth. Male rage is their knee-jerk response.”
Some of the comments included in the name and shame list included calls for Thunberg to be “burnt at the stake”, “grabbed by the pigtails” and “slapped with a brick”.
As Nelson and Vertigan say, Thunberg’s bullies “are reaching deep into the misogynist’s playbook to divert focus from her message”, Bristol Live is turning the spotlight back on those directing hatred towards a young woman online and setting the standard by refusing to tolerate abusive threats.
Zoe Victoria is a freelance writer. You can follow Zoe on Twitter @Zoe__V