Twitter Suspends Alt-Right Accounts, Promises Tools To Fight Abuse

Kris Tripplaar/Sipa USA

Twitter suspended several users from the alt-right movement Tuesday, the same day the social media platform pledged to combat hate speech.

USA Today reported that several prominent leaders in the alt-right community, which brings together white nationalists, anti-Semites and misogynists, have been banned from the site. Most notably among them were Richard Spencer, who Mother Jones called the movement’s “self-styled prophet,” his think tank, the National Policy Institute, and his online magazine, Radix Journal.

Spencer called the move a “purge.”

“This is corporate Stalinism,” he said in a YouTube video published Tuesday. “I am alive physically but digitally speaking there has been execution squads across the alt-right.”

Twitter also removed the accounts of Paul Town, Pax Dickinson, Ricky Vaughn, John Rivers, and others, according to USA Today.

WeSearchr, a crowd-funded conservative news website created by Pax Dickinson and Charles C. Johnson, who was himself banned from Twitter in 2015, tweeted that the site “is on a censorship rampage!”

WIRED also reported Tuesday that Twitter users would soon be able to filter out certain keywords, phrases, user names and hashtags on the site, a tool it said would help fight abuse and harassment.

Twitter wasn’t alone in acting this week: Google and Facebook both announced that they would cut off access to platform advertising for fake news pages and websites, which critics have said helped spread and lend credence to many of Donald Trump’s unsubstantiated campaign claims.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matt Shuham is a news writer for TPM. He was previously assistant editor of The National Memo and managing editor of the Harvard Political Review. He is available by email at mshuham@talkingpointsmemo.com and on Twitter @mattshuham.
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