Published: Thu, August 09, 2018

YouTube, Apple and Facebook remove content from InfoWars and Alex Jones

YouTube, Apple and Facebook remove content from InfoWars and Alex Jones

Embattled conservative conspiracy podcaster Alex Jones has been tossed off five major media platforms - Facebook, Apple, Google, Youtube and Spotify - for violating the sites' standards by spreading hate speech.

"We believe in representing a wide range of views, so long as people are respectful to those with differing opinions", an Apple spokesperson said.

The cumulative actions represent the largest efforts yet against Jones, a conspiracy theorist who most famously promoted the idea that the 2012 Sandy Hook junior school shooting in CT never happened and was staged.

Alex Jones, the conspiracy theorist and his show, Infowars, has been banned from several forums, including Facebook and Spotify, and Youtube has just been added to the list. Last week, YouTube removed four videos posted by Jones and issued a warning that more violations could result in a ban from the video platform. "Social media shouldn't be in the business of political censorship".

Jones, who has a verified Twitter account with 825,000 followers, had not addressed Apple's action by early Monday.

Youtube has clearly stated that Alex Jones has violated their terms of service by spewing hate speech and harassing others, often by name.

Twitter told ABC News on Monday that Jones is now not in violation of the company's policies.

Apple no longer links to series such as The Alex Jones Podcast and War Room in its apps.

Twitter is in an extremely awkward position as the lone large social media company that still hosts Alex Jones.

Spotify, the streaming music online service, had already removed a number of Jones' podcasts last week, accusing them of breaking its own hate-speech rules.

The decision to remove the content was confirmed by Apple who issed a statement saying the removal was part of its crackdown on the use of hate speech, which violates its content guidelines. On Monday, Spotify also told PCMag it had banned Alex Jones from the platform over repeated violations relating to hate speech. "And if you make the fact we need an Internet Bill of Rights, and antitrust-busting on these companies, if they don't back off right now", Jones said.

"The establishment is making its move against free speech here in America", said Jone at the time.

Some also noted the curious way that Facebook, Apple, YouTube and Spotify all made a decision to ban Jones at exactly the same time, despite the fact that he had been active on their platforms for years.

The company also said that it had also suspended Jones' personal profile for 30 days for his having posted the offensive content. The parents of two children shot in that attack are suing him for defamation, saying he had made "false, cruel, and risky assertions".

A representative said that Spotify took seriously reports of hate content.

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