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Trump Banned from Reddit and Twitch

After repeated racist violations, Trump has been banned from the streaming and social media sites

Brian Young's picture
Jun 29, 2020

Trump is in more trouble with social media companies after Reddit and Twitch announced that they will be blocking his content on their respective sites.

Both crackdowns happened on Monday and follow similar actions by Facebook and Twitter. In Reddit’s case, they announced that the site would be banning about 2,000 subreddits including the popular r/The_Donald. Reddit was an important meeting ground for Trump supporters during the 2016 campaign. According to Reddit, of the 2,000 subreddits, only about 200 were still active. In a statement posted on their site, Reddit said:

We banned r/The_Donald because it has not done so, despite every opportunity. The community has consistently hosted and upvoted more rule-breaking content than average (Rule 1), antagonized us and other communities (Rules 2 and 8), and its mods have refused to meet our most basic expectations. Until now, we’ve worked in good faith to help them preserve the community as a space for its users—through warnings, mod changes, quarantining, and more.

The subreddit had over 790,000 subscribers as of Monday morning. Previously, Reddit had tried to force the moderators to better control the subreddit by restricting the group's functionality and visibility on the site. However, that did not stop the racist, derogatory and xenophobic content within the group. During the 2016 campaign, Trump used the r/The_Donald group to organize supporters, even joining the group to do an Ask Me Anything.

Less than an hour after Reddit’s announcement, the popular streaming site Twitch announced a temporary ban of Trump’s content from the platform. Twitch, which is owned by Amazon, has 15 million daily users, most being under 35. According to Twitch, Trump got banned after a replay of his 2016 rally where he called Mexican immigrants “rapists,” and a video from a rally where Trump spoke about “tough hombres” committing break-ins. He was also flagged after his Tulsa rally was broadcast on the site and he made comments that Twitch deemed a violation of their Terms of Service.

“Like anyone else, politicians on Twitch must adhere to our Terms of Service and Community Guidelines. We do not make exceptions for political or newsworthy content and will take action on content reported to us that violates our rules,” Twitch said in a statement. Any hateful conduct is considered a zero-tolerance violation, the company added.

Like other social media platforms, Reddit has come under intense scrutiny for its hands-off approach to hate speech. It was well known as a place that took a more relaxed approach than Facebook or Twitter and it became a place for harassment and hate speech that was geared especially towards communities of color. As the site has tried to moderate its community, users have left, creating clone sites that have become even bigger cesspools of hate.

Reddit and Twitch’s actions come less than a month after Twitter began placing fact check notices on Trump’s tweets. Facebook also recently clamped down on Trump by blocking an ad that used a Nazi symbol. In March, Facebook also banned some Trump ads after the company said the ads violated the companies policy against content meant to create confusion around the US Census. Youtube/Google has also clamped down, banning over 300 Trump ads in the last year.

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