SNP Women's Convener Rhiannon Spear lifts lid on Twitter abuse following anti-UK comments

The Glasgow city councillor and National Women’s Convenor of the SNP has revealed the amount of online hate and abuse she received after making ‘hate UK’ comment on Twitter during Eurovision last weekend.

By Liv McMahon
Friday, 28th May 2021, 10:23 am
Updated Friday, 28th May 2021, 12:22 pm
The UK's James Newman reacts after failing to score at the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest (Picture: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
The UK's James Newman reacts after failing to score at the 2021 Eurovision Song Contest (Picture: Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

After the SNP representative and councillor tweeted during this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, held on May 22, “it’s ok Europe, we hate the United Kingdom too. Love, Scotland”, Ms Spear revealed the torrent of abuse she has received in the week following.

This comes after Ms Spear apologised for and deleted the tweet in question.

“I have now deleted this tweet about the UK's results in the Eurovision Song Contest, and apologise for any offence caused,” Ms Spear said in a statement on May 23 as police were said to be investigating a number of complaints about her ‘hate UK’ tweet.

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Posting on Twitter on Thursday, May 27, Ms Spear asked those sending her abuse via email, text and phone to “please stop”:

“My phone has been off since Saturday.

“I’m terrified I miss casework due to the volume of emails, texts, voicemails and phone calls I am receiving.

“Those amplifying this after I have apologised know what they’re doing.

“Please stop.”

The tweet from Ms Spear’s now protected Twitter account also included an image of an email she had received telling her to “drop dead you hateful ****”.

On Friday, Ms Spear further revealed the abuse in a tweet arguing that “politics is a dangerous place for women and something must change.”

Among a thread of screenshotted abuse sent on Facebook Messenger were violent and misogynistic comments, with Ms Spear being repeatedly told to die.

“You started self harming yet you f****** thick ****” was included along with “hope you get [ran] over and die. Go on ring the police” and “hope you choke and suffocate on your words”.

Ms Spear added: “We cannot encourage women into this space with full knowledge of what they will experience.”

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