Children's author Malorie Blackman on Monday received foul racist abuse on Twitter after being a Sky News article, where she called for greater character diversity, ran with the headline "Children's books have 'too many white faces'".
The author told Sky News that children's literature needs a greater diversity in its characters - which would see people of under represented races and the disabled gain more prominent coverage.
Blackman said: "I think what we need, especially in publishing, is more commissioning editors, and editors who are people of colour.
"You want to escape into fiction as well and read about other people, other cultures, other lives, other planets and so on."
Blackman added: "I think there is a very significant message that goes out when you cannot see yourself at all in the books you are reading."
The headline, took out of context, Blackman's comments, causing her to be bombarded with racial abuse - which she blocked upon receiving.
On Twitter the children's author accused Sky News of misquoting her.
— Malorie Blackman (@malorieblackman) August 24, 2014
Sky News reporter Richard Suchet, who wrote the article, agreed that the headline was inaccurate and unfair, "Errors are unforgivable in our industry. An apology rarely suffices," he said.
As a result of the abuse, Blackman left the social network, however, Twitter users defended the widely-acclaimed author, well-known for her books, many of which touch upon the issues of prejudice and racism.
Appalled that our amazing children's laureate @malorieblackman has received a torrent of racist abuse for asking 4 more diversity in kidslit — Helena Pielichaty (@HelenaPielichat) August 24, 2014
Anyone being mean to the amazing @malorieblackman can take us all on, frankly. Come and have a go if you think you're hard enough. — Holly Smale (@HolSmale) August 26, 2014
After support from well-standing members of the Twitter community Blackman rejoined the site and issued a comment towards would-be racists.
Wow! I’m so overwhelmed and humbled by the messages of support and love I’ve received since I posted my last tweet. 1/2 — Malorie Blackman (@malorieblackman) August 26, 2014
I only meant to take a few days break to write an article about this whole issue. Racists and haters will never make me run away. Ever! 2/2 — Malorie Blackman (@malorieblackman) August 26, 2014
Hell will freeze over before I let racists and haters silence me. In fact, they just proved to me that I was right to speak out. — Malorie Blackman (@malorieblackman) August 26, 2014
This comes after Stan Collymore clashed with Twitter in June after it refused to supply police with information regarding the identity of individuals who had racially abused him.