Prince Harry says social media has 'contributed to, stoked a crisis of hate'

The duke said that he and his wife, Meghan, have spent the past few weeks calling business leaders and marketing executives on the issue

07 August 2020 - 07:56 By Jill Serjeant
Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex. File image.
Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex. File image.
Image: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Britain's Prince Harry on Thursday said social media was stoking a "crisis of hate," and he appealed to companies to rethink their roles in advertising on digital platforms.

In an opinion piece for US business magazine Fast Company headlined Social media is dividing us. Together, we can redesign it, Harry said that he and his wife, Meghan, have spent the past few weeks calling business leaders and marketing executives on the issue.

"Companies like yours have the chance to reconsider your role in funding and supporting online platforms that have contributed to, stoked, and created the conditions for a crisis of hate, a crisis of health, and a crisis of truth," wrote Harry. He did not name any companies.

Harry, the grandson of Queen Elizabeth, called for online communities to be "defined more by compassion than hate; by truth instead of misinformation; by equity and inclusiveness instead of injustice and fearmongering; by free, rather than weaponised, speech."

Harry and Meghan, formally known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, now live in Los Angeles after stepping down from their royal roles in March to forge new careers. They moved out of the UK after growing media hostility.

In a speech last month, Meghan urged teen girls and young women to drown out sometimes "painfully loud" negative online chatter with positivity.

Harry in his opinion piece urged companies to use their advertising dollars "to demand change from the very places that give a safe haven and vehicle of propagation to hate and division."

Reuters