This report reviews 68 peer-reviewed scholarly articles on online hate speech in sports, published between January 1, 2000, and October 18, 2023. Key findings include:

  • Rapid increase in research on the topic in the last two years.
  • Focus primarily on regions such as the USA (24%), UK (22%), and Australia (6%).
  • Main sports studied include soccer, American football, basketball, and Australian rules football.
  • Primary platforms studied: Twitter (41%), Facebook (19%), and Instagram (12%).
  • Most researched types of hate: racism (37%), misogyny (24%), and homophobia (15%).
  • Athletes are the main targets of online hate, with fans being the primary perpetrators.
  • Predominant use of secondary data and qualitative methods in research.

This report not only highlights the major areas of concern but also identifies gaps in current research and offers recommendations for future studies. Download the full document to explore our findings and insights in detail.

To combat online hate speech, research is crucial to measure its prevalence and understand its causes and effects. International Sports Federations (ISFs) play a key role in athlete development and protection, including anti-doping and safeguarding athletes from abuse. There are over 300 ISFs globally, representing various sports.

This report examines the extent to which ISFs conduct and report primary research on hate speech in their sports. After searching 206 ISF websites and emailing 196 ISFs, we found only six English-language research reports published by ISFs. An additional six related research reports were identified. This Briefing Note provides an overview of these 12 reports.

Explore our findings and insights by downloading the full document.