Lewis Hamilton joins social media blackout as Mercedes star calls out F1 chiefs

Lewis Hamilton is set to join sport's boycott of social media this weekend having been the target of online abusers earlier in his career.

The seven-time Formula One World Drivers' Champion is ready to add his name to the growing list of stars who will refrain from posting on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram until Tuesday.

Hamilton has built up 22 million followers on Instagram throughout his career, but he will not be sharing any updates immediately before or after Sunday’s Portuguese Grand Prix.

Hamilton said: “I am fully supportive of the initiative and if me doing it helps put pressure on those platforms then I am happy to do so.

“It is clear that racism continues to be an issue and social media platforms need to do more to combat this.

“There are algorithms and they are able to see things and take steps to create an anti-racist society, and that is what we have to be pushing towards.

“I am really proud to hear there are so many organisations getting involved. I am not sure why Formula One is not a part of that.”

Hamilton added: “I was subjected to abuse when I was younger.

“There was a period of time when I had to understand you cannot read every comment or take it personally.

“If you let those things get to you, it can ruin your day. I stepped back from it and I generally don't go searching for that stuff, or for validation.

“I have amazing support from many fans who follow me and I am grateful for that.”

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  • Speaking to the Daily Mail, a spokesperson for F1 said: “F1 is wholly committed to combatting any form of discrimination, online or otherwise.

    “We support the actions of the Premier League and other sporting bodies and athletes in highlighting that more must be done to eradicate online abuse they are receiving directly.

    “We continue to work with all platforms and our own audiences to promote respect and positive values and to stop racism.”

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