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Lewis Hamilton wants social networking sites to limit online abuse

Nicholas Latifi and Lewis Hamilton before Abu Dhabi grand opening. (Beautiful pictures)

Lewis Hamilton urges social media companies to do more to prevent the spread of abuse online after Formula 1 driver Nicholas Latifi’s colleague received death threats after the end of the season Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

Latifi crashed his Williams car with a few laps left and joined Hamilton in eighth place F1 position. The incident resulted in a safe vehicle, and Max Verstappen Overcoming seven-time F1 champion Hamilton in the final round to claim the world title amid fierce controversy.

Despite the bluff, Latifi has been hunted online as outrage grows at Hamilton’s sudden loss of such a title.

“Ultimately, I don’t think there’s been a big shift or change, or enough work, that has been done by these social platforms. We still have to put pressure on them to make the changes,” Hamilton said Friday after revealing the Mercedes‘2022 car. “Mental health is a real thing, and through these social platforms, people are being abused.

“No one deserves it and that should never be tolerated,” the 37-year-old British driver added. “(Social networks) can change these things and make changes, but they don’t seem to be doing it fast enough. So I think we just need to keep putting the pressure on.”

Latifi has been affected to the extent he hired bodyguards for a sightseeing trip London with his girlfriend.

Hamilton said: “I’ve been in touch with Nicholas, he has my support and I know how difficult it can be in those situations.

Mercedes driver George Russell, who was previously Latifi’s teammate at Williams, also agrees with Hamilton.

“I think more needs to be done for the athletes, for the people who are paying attention because the people behind the computer, behind the keyboard think they have the right to say what they like,” said Russell. “Almost forgot that everyone is human… Something really needs to be done and I feel really, really bad for Nicholas.”

Russell also had trouble in the same car at one point.

“Mistakes happen and I know firsthand how difficult that particular Williams car is to drive,” he said. “He absolutely doesn’t deserve what he gets so definitely more needs to be done.”

Latifi, a 26-year-old Canadian, spoke about the impact the threats had on his mental state.

“I was back in London after the race and I was safe when I went to Winter Wonderland with my girlfriend,” he said on Tuesday. “You have to take threats seriously because you don’t know what can happen and that’s just an unfortunate reality of the world we live in.”

Latifi, anticipating abuse, deleted Instagram and Twitter from her phone.

“Using social media as a channel to attack someone with messages of hate, abuse and threats of violence is shocking and I am calling for something,” he said.

Hamilton also removed himself from his platform after Abu Dhabi, just appeared two weeks ago.

The new 23-race season begins on March 20 at the Bahrain GP.


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