Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia have launched a new initiative to combat hate online. The Swedish royal couple announced on Thursday, October 10, the hashtag #nejtillnäthat, and its logo that aim to distance people from hatred. “Hatred is everywhere, in all walks of life, all professions, gender identities and ages. We know that and that is enough now. The goal is that during a common symbol and active use of the symbol, we show that we distance ourselves from cyber hatred and all that it entails. That as many as possible say no to online hate. Telling is something we can all do. And we start NOW,” a message (translated to English) on Sofia and Carl Philip’s personal social media account read.
Nejtillnäthat’s official web site notes that mental ill health is increasing, especially among children and young people. “Politicians are resigning because of threats and many dare not express their political opinion in fear of reprisals. Thus, the hatred constitutes a direct threat to democracy. Just because we have freedom of speech and something is not illegal doesn't mean it's okay,” the site states.
The webpage encourages individuals to respond to hateful and nasty comments with #nejtillnäthat, rather than arguing, apologizing or hating back, which they say is “rarely a good strategy.” The site points out that everyone needs to take responsibility to create a more “inclusive Internet.” Rather than idly scrolling through hatred online, they want people to act with #nejtillnäthat.
Sofia and Carl Philip have previously opened up about their experiences with cyber-bullying. The couple’s foundation works against bullying online. In 2017, at the opening of the First World Anti-Bullying Forum, Prince Alexander’s mom said that she and her husband want to be “good role models” for others fighting bullying. She explained, “Bullying affects very many and we want to be a part of highlighting this problem, because it's not only those who are affected, but also all of us who can make a difference.”