Racism on social media in the spotlight at national hearing

RACISM on social media is the topic of discussion at a national hearing being held by the South African Human Rights Commission over the next two days in Johannesburg.

Numerous cases of racist comments reported on over the past two years have brought the issue to the public’s attention.

The Commission said it received 505 race-related complaints over the past financial year.

“This is indicative of the fact that despite the significant achievements over the past 23 years of democracy, deep inequalities and unfair discrimination remain a serious concern,” SAHRC said.

The most recent incident which infuriated people was a meme posted by Riaan Lucas on Twitter shortly after Joost van der Westhuizen’s death. The image depicted American actor, Tobey Maguire Wryly smiling with the caption “Me when I hear a white man has died”.

Various professionals and organisations will attend the hearing to understand the issue and inform the Commission and the public on what constitutes racism on social media and who should be held accountable.

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