Thanks to the advancement of white nationalism to the White House, the racist “alt-right” is having quite the heyday. BuzzFeed News reports, however, that many prominent figures from the movement have been getting shut out of numerous platforms for using them to make money off of spreading hate.
Prominent members of the so-called alt-right and other right-wing movements often rely on crowdfunding platforms and online payment processors to fund their causes (and sometimes even their bail), but lately they’ve been having trouble accessing the money donated by their supporters. Over the past five months, PayPal has banned or hobbled the accounts of several prominent people and groups that promote far-right politics. Crowdfunding platforms like GoFundMe, Patreon, and YouCaring have also cut fundraisers for alt-right–associated causes and people.
Considering that the tech world doesn’t exactly have the best track record with diversity and tolerance, this is a pleasant surprise. It may also be a hopeful sign that finally we’re seeing folks recognizing that members of the alt-right support hateful and backward ideologies.
In response to the slow shut-out, Richard Spencer launched a new site where the racists can raise money—all in the name of their twisted concept of “free speech”—in peace.
And a new, invite-only crowdfunding site called “Hatreon” that launched in June has garnered attention from Richard Spencer, the white nationalist credited with coining the term “alt-right.” Hatreon told BuzzFeed News that it currently hosts 50 campaigns supported by about 130 donors who send roughly $3,000 per month in total. The company said these numbers represent a soft launch and that its site will be available to the public soon. Cody Wilson, a cofounder, said he and others started the site after Patreon kicked right-wing content creator TV KWA off its platform at the end of May.
Paypal’s crackdown isn’t limited to American alt-right “activists.” Accounts for a French anti-immigrant group called Generation Identity and the violent anti-Muslim site Bare Naked Islam have been blocked and/or limited, too.