Reddit continues to crack down on hateful communities on their website with the banning of the r/AltRight subreddit on Wednesday night. Admins have since said the sub was removed for promoting harassment and doxing.
The r/AltRight moderators claim they knew the ban was long coming, and that Reddit heads wanted to stop the quick growth they had on the hub. Reports indicate the subscription count on the community may be fake.
The large forum website hosts thousands of big and small subreddits. In the eve of President Trump’s campaign and election, subs like r/The_Donald and r/AltRight came together.
What is the alt-right movement?
Alt-right is short for the alternative right. its members follow an ideology that mixes a conservative background with a more radical perspective on political and current issues.
People who joined alt-right are characterized by their very blunt forms of expression, opposite to current trends of extreme political correctness that ‘plagues’ traditional American ideals.
The sub r/DebateAltRight, one of the communities still standing after the ban of the main sub, poses that members of the movement hold one essential position above all: the idea of “racial realism” or human inequality.
“ALL MEN ARE NOT CREATED EQUAL. THE RACES HAVE LEGITIMATE AND NOT INSIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES, BOTH PHYSIOLOGICAL AND PSYCHOLOGICAL, AND THESE DIFFERENCES HAVE AN IMPORTANT EFFECT ON SOCIETY,” the sidebar description on the Sub Reads.
This concept extends to gender as well, adding on top the significance of identity above all else. The rules 2 and 3 of the community forbid the use of ad hominem insults and racial slurs in discussions.
Why did Reddit ban r/AltRight?
Top moderators of the website have told several outlets that the reason why r/AltRight was removed from the site was, primarily, because it encouraged users to lead campaigns of harassment which are against Reddit’s terms and conditions.
In a statement to Gizmodo, a mod said that community leaders were instigating users to gather information on “targets” using a witch-hunt kind of site, besides repeatedly breaking etiquette rules that all subs must obey.
r/SubredditDrama’s summary post on the whole issue has a statement by u/MortalSosyphus, one of the former mods of r/AltRight saying they knew what was coming and that Reddit chiefs are playing a losing game by silencing alternative communities that do not conform to the site’s views.
Online discussion about the banning has led people to point out that Reddit is free to run their company as they please, and that they do not have to abide by ‘free-speech’ guidelines since they are a private venture entitled to host whatever content they want to host.