Ursula Jacob has dismissed an apology she received from sports website Benchwarmers, which published an article based on two critical tweets about her GAA panditry.
he four-time All-Star told that Irish Independent She decided to call out both the article and the online trolls after witnessing “disgusting, vile and disgusting” abuse against her female colleagues.
The anonymous article, published over the weekend, was headlined “Ursula Jacob comes to hammer the Sunday Game Panel”.
Ursula considered responding to the article, but feels that remaining silent on the issue of the social media abuse faced by female commentators in sport is no longer an option.
“I’m not the kind of person who would normally take to the stage, but I think it’s about time more of us started talking about things like this,” Ms. Jacob said.
“If you stay silent all the time, you’re not going to get anywhere.
“These nameless, envious, jealous people are irrelevant, but that doesn’t mean their words don’t hurt.
“People say to ignore them, but where does that stop? Do they want to take you to the breaking point?
“It’s hard to get into the mindset of someone who enjoys hitting someone and making personal and nasty comments.
“How do you think you’re going to get away with it? How do you feel entitled to make these comments about people? And that’s across the board, it’s not just about me.
“Social media is brilliant, but so toxic in other ways. It’s almost out of control.
“The abuse that other female commenters are taking is absolutely despicable. Some people seem to have a serious problem with women.”
Ms Jacob said she had little interest in the apology released by Benchwarmers.
“What I’m looking for is a change in attitude. Headlines should be factual and accurate, they should have substance,” she said. “When you went into the article, there were two tweets from two people who had about 10 followers combined. And they made an article out of it. They said I got a banging.
“By publishing this you are feeding this toxic narrative being generated against female experts.
“I have a brilliant husband and great friends, but what if you were in a slightly more vulnerable state? Where does that leave you?
“I was pissed Sunday when I saw the headline,” she added. “I stumbled across this and was horrified. That almost made me doubt myself.
“I wondered what I could have said or done The Sunday game. It was only when I read the article that I saw how misleading and inaccurate it was.
Ms Jacob will be a mother for the first time in September, which forced her to speak out.
“I’m expecting my first child in September and I want to be the best mom I can be and I want to be a role model for them too.
“I would encourage my kid to stand up for themselves and I need to show them that I’m a strong person,” she added.
“People have been telling me to leave social media, but actually I have to stay with it for professional reasons. Here I get information about teams and players and line-ups. However, my accounts are all private; That’s the only way I can protect myself. And I shouldn’t have to leave social media to stay safe from abuse.
“People need to talk about it.”
Lisa Fallon is well known in Irish football circles and is one of the most respected coaches in the country.
With a UEFA professional license, Ms Fallon has been involved with a number of teams in England and Ireland as well as the Dublin GAA footballers.
Mrs Fallon said that Irish Independent She deleted the Twitter app from her phone to avoid social media abuse.
“It’s not easy sitting in the commentary seat when you know there’s always someone waiting to contradict you,” she said.
“When I started in 2019 I competed in the Women’s World Cup and there were no problems.
“But the moment I did a men’s Champions League game, I was like, ‘What does a woman do when she talks about men’s football’, even though I’ve spent my entire career in men’s football.
“Actually, I was more qualified to talk about men’s football than women’s football.
“You’re dealing with people’s prejudices, but that can change, I hope.”
https://www.independent.ie/sport/ursula-jacob-becoming-a-mother-has-compelled-me-to-speak-out-against-the-harassment-female-pundits-face-41817125.html Ursula Jacob: “Becoming a mother forced me to speak out against harassment of female experts”