Last week, we reported on a social media website Gab, which some may describe as a Twitter for neo-Nazis and white supremacists. The website has quickly become a controversial platform for spreading of hate, racism, and anti-semitism, while also inciting violence.
The website’s app has already been banned from Google, and Microsoft has threatened to cancel their web hosting. It was last week that Microsoft’s cloud computing services, Azure, contacted the owners of Gab and provided them with 48 hours to remove content which they claim violated their “acceptable use policy”.
On Thursday, Microsoft released the following statement to Hill Reporter:
“Microsoft received a complaint about specific posts on Gab.ai that advocate ‘ritual death by torture’ and the ‘complete eradication’ of all Jews. After an initial review, we have concluded that this content incites violence, is not protected by the First Amendment, and violates Microsoft Azure’s acceptable use policy. Microsoft notified Gab.ai of this substantial concern and advised that it remove this content or respond to Microsoft within 48 hours, or potentially risk suspension of its service on Azure.
We believe we have an important responsibility to ensure that our services are not abused by people and groups seeking to incite violence against others. Our policies rightly prohibit this type of content, and we expect Gab.ai to abide by these policies if it wishes to use our service. Gab.ai is of course free to choose otherwise and work with another cloud service provider or host this content itself. If it wishes to make that choice, we will provide it with a reasonable amount of time, in this instance longer than 48 hours, to transition its content elsewhere before its access to Azure is terminated. But we will stand by our policy and insist that Gab.ai remove what is unlawful and hateful content.”
This was quite a statement coming from one of America’s largest technology companies. Within hours of the notification, Gab caved to Microsoft’s demands and removed the offending posts. The only problem, however, is that there are literally dozens, if not hundreds, of posts just as bad, if not worse than those which were originally reported, still in existence on Gab’s platform.
One of these anti-semitic posts on Gab which clearly incites violence, reads, “Jews gonna jew. The only thing we can do is gas them all.”
Another says, “Kill all n-ggers and Jews tbh”
There seems to be a common theme among many Gab users. That theme is to incite violence and spread hate of minorities and Jewish people, as well as mock the holocaust and lynchings of African Americans.
Another disturbing post shows a video of a Nazi shooting a Jewish woman in the back of the head, and reads, “JEW CAN RUN, BUT jEW CAN’T HIDE. HERE IS A CLIP FROM MY PERSONAL SPANK BANK ? enjoy I REALLY HATE JEWS THIS BAD, I WILLINGLY WILL KILL THEIR CHILDREN.”
But it doesn’t end there. There are literally hundreds of posts like this, calling for the torture and murder of Jewish people and African Americans. Just a handful of these posts can be seen below (viewer discretion is advised):
Hill Reporter has contacted Microsoft’s media representative about these posts and others, but Microsoft has refused to respond to our question, simply saying, “Letting you know that Microsoft has nothing further to share.”
These posts are clearly inciting violence, and undoubtedly by anyone’s standards would represent “hate speech”. So why is Microsoft refusing to respond? Why do they continue to allow Gab to host their website on Azure? These questions all remain unanswered.
I’ve also reached out to Gab to let them know that they continue to host these hateful messages. Their response was simply, “Dear Ed, Eat shit.”