Stemming the rise in online abuse

Blog Post

Participation Thursday, February 18, 2021 View Count = 1451

Stemming the rise in online abuse

In an effort to stem the rise in hateful comments online, the federal government recently announced that it is drafting legislation to regulate content on social media.

With the issue of online incivility and abuse taking on greater urgency, last week the Samara Centre welcomed MPs Charlie Angus, Iqra Khalid, and Bob Zimmer for a roundtable discussion on the impacts of online harm in Canadian politics, including their own experiences with it. Co-hosted by Friends of Canadian Broadcasting, the event also featured researchers Chris Tenove and Heidi Tworek, authors of the report Trolled on the Campaign Trail.

Despite their political differences, the MPs stood united in voicing a growing concern with the state of online discourse and the role of social media platforms. Angus warned that, unless more is done to deal with the problem, "one of our MPs will be a victim of someone doing something really wrong," with Khalid adding that "the fear is very real." Echoing our own research, they cautioned that online harassment is discouraging Canadians from participating in the democratic process, before touching on potential solutions.

Didn't get a chance to tune in? You can now stream the entire event on YouTube and Facebook. Help us amplify this timely discussion by sharing it on social media, where the problem is most visible.

Attracting over 500 viewers and plenty of audience questions, the discussion also garnered significant media interest:

Conversations like this one are critical to the future of democracy. But they aren't possible without your support. As an educational charity, the Samara Centre relies on donations from supporters like you. Help us continue this vital dialogue by donating today.


Work With Us


Led by a team of recruiters at Odgers Berndtson, the search for the Samara Centre's next Executive Director has begun! As we seek a visionary and strategic leader to inject fresh insight and perspective into our work, we are counting on you to help spread the word. Who better to connect us with a diverse range of talented candidates than our incredible community of supporters, who care deeply about Canada's democracy and our mission to strengthen it?

For more on the job and how to apply, visit our Work With Us page. If you have any questions, please contact Mary-Katherine Bouchard at [email protected]

On the Samara BlBlog logo representing the letter 'o'g