Wiley removed from Facebook and Instagram after antisemitic posts
Wiley has been banned from Facebook and Instagram for a series of antisemitic posts – just days after he was temporarily blocked from Twitter for the same reason.
An unverified Facebook account under Richard Kylea Cowie – the grime artist’s real name – took aim at several Jewish celebrities, including Lord Sugar, BBC presenter Emma Barnett and comedian David Baddiel, who had all criticised his earlier comments.
He had been widely condemned for putting antisemitic messages on Twitter and Instagram.
One post on the unverified account said: “Emma Barnett get me on your show,” while another urged Baddiel to “come and talk to me to my face”.
There was also a post that mentioned Golders Green, an area of north London known for its Jewish community.
Facebook took down the account on Tuesday, along with the artist’s official verified profiles, amid strong external pressure.
It comes after Downing Street criticised the response from social networks earlier in the week as not being “good enough” due to the amount of time it took for action.
“Social media companies need to go much further and faster in removing hateful content such as this,” the prime minister’s spokesman told reporters.
On Tuesday, the Board of Deputies of British Jews said it had raised the issue with Facebook “as a matter of urgency” and called for the 41-year-old’s removal from the platform.
“We are aware that Richard Cowie – AKA Wiley – has continued his obsessive targeting of the Jewish community on Facebook, now that Twitter and Instagram are closed off to him,” Board of Deputies president Marie van der Zyl said.
She added: “We have raised his conduct with Facebook as a matter of urgency and have stressed in the strongest possible terms that they should remove him from their platform as well.”
Ms Van der Zyl said the board was also in talks with Twitter to urge the network to permanently delete the account as the rapper had “made it clear” that “he intends to exhibit even worse behaviour” once his temporary ban is lifted.
Wiley is currently in the middle of a seven-day ban from the platform, and has since been dropped by his management.