YouTube, Apple, Facebook ban Infowars' Alex Jones for violating hate speech policies
Alex Jones created InfoWars, an alt-right media platform peddling fake news, outrageous conspiracy theories and questionable dietary supplements like "Super Male Vitality." Most famously, he falsely claimed the Sandy Hook school shooting - in which a gunman killed 20 children between 6 and 7 years old - was a "hoax" and the parents were "crisis actors." The parents of two of the children killed in the massacre are currently suing him for defamation.
Jones also promoted the fabricated "Pizzagate" conspiracy theory. The apoplectic host alleged that Democrats were running a secret child sex trafficking ring in the basement of a Washington, D.C. pizzeria. (Seriously.) Due to these false claims, the owners and employees of the pizzeria began receiving death threats and online harassment. One man was so convinced of the conspiracy that he charged into the pizza shop with an AR-15 and fired three rounds. Luckily, no one was injured. And no, he didn't find a child sex trafficking ring. The restaurant didn't even have a basement.
Over the past few years, Jones' popularity has skyrocketed, but today his tinfoil hat empire took a hit. YouTube, Apple, Facebook and Spotify announced that they have banned Alex Jones for violating hate speech policies. On YouTube, Jones' channel had 2.4 million subscribers. The website had warned him before about violating their guidelines, taking down four videos and suspending the channel from live-streaming for 90 days. Now the channel has been terminated.
"All users agree to comply with our Terms of Service and Community Guidelines when they sign up to use YouTube," said the company in a statement. "When users violate these policies repeatedly, like our policies against hate speech and harassment or our terms prohibiting circumvention of our enforcement measures, we terminate their accounts."
Facebook announced that it removed four pages - Alex Jones Channel, Alex Jones, InfoWars and InfoWars Nightly News - for violating community standards on hate speech. According to cached results on Google, the pages had a combined 2.9 million likes. Apple purged hundreds of Jones' podcasts from iTunes and Podcasts apps, issuing a statement that they "do not tolerate hate speech." Spotify followed suit, expunging hundreds of episodes of The Alex Jones Show. "We take reports of hate content seriously," said the company in a statement.
On his radio show, Jones' response was "Thank God." In a live broadcast on Periscope, Jones complained that he was the victim of a "globalist death star" attempting to ban conservatives from social media. He claimed that he expected the ban, and that InfoWars is the "most censored" channel on Earth. And of course, he encouraged viewers to "feed your gladiator" by buying questionable dietary supplements like "Alpha Power."
Twitter, which owns Periscope, is the only major social media company that hasn't banned Jones (at least, as of this writing.) His Twitter account is verified, with 830,000 followers. But these bans will probably not be like a "death star." The InfoWars website gets major traffic, with 3.6 million monthly unique visitors. Also, Alex Jones reaches millions of listeners through his radio show, which is broadcast online and syndicated on 160 national stations.
So, pour out some liquor - or Super Male Vitality Fluid - for Alex Jones' content on YouTube, Facebook, Apple and Spotify. I'll always remember him best for 2015 rant about gay frogs:
"What do you think tap water is? It's a gay bomb, baby. And I'm not saying people didn't naturally have homosexual feelings. I'm not even getting into it, quite frankly. I mean, give me a break. Do you think I'm like, oh, shocked by it, so I'm up here bashing it because I don't like gay people? I don't like 'em putting chemicals in the water that TURN THE FREAKIN' FROGS GAY! Do you understand that? I'm sick of being social engineered, it's not funny!"