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Amid Shutdown, Gab.com Claims Free Speech Infringement While Many Others View Them as Hate Site

Michele Neylon

The controversial site gab.com has been shut down by GoDaddy and given 2 days to move the domain elsewhere. The deadline expires at midnight tonight Irish time.

In recent days the site has seen itself become increasingly disconnected as various service providers and online platforms including PayPal have shut the door to them. At present the site is displaying this notice:

The text reads:

Gab.com is under attack. We have been systematically no-platformed by App Stores, multiple hosting providers, and several payment processors. We have been smeared by the mainstream media for defending free expression and individual liberty for all people and for working with law enforcement to ensure that justice is served for the horrible atrocity committed in Pittsburgh. Gab will continue to fight for the fundamental human right to speak freely.

As we transition to a new hosting provider Gab will be inaccessible for a period of time. We are working around the clock to get Gab.com back online. Thank you and remember to speak freely.

GoDaddy wasn't the hosting provider for the site and it currently uses CloudFlare's DNS servers, so it's not clear who is the host, as the previous provider Joyent pulled the plug. However, as GoDaddy will be pulling the registration later today the site will need to find a new registrar first.

GoDaddy's notice to GAB is pretty clear (screenshot from their Twitter account which might get suspended):

Registrars like GoDaddy generally avoid getting involved in issues related to "content" on websites, but will when they feel that they are justified in doing so under their terms of service.

Where will Gab.com end up?

It's not clear at this juncture, as with the case of DailyStormer there are very few companies that will want to attract a domain with so much negative attention to their platforms. The domain itself is a 3 letter .com so many in the domain investment space will be watching it like a hawk, as Andrew notes the domain was bought for $200k.

By Michele Neylon, MD of Blacknight Solutions
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Politics has Poisoned Everything The Famous Brett Watson  –  Oct 30, 2018 6:00 AM PST

All the balderdash about domain name branding shows its bankruptcy when a registrar can arbitrarily give you a weekend's notice to quit or have your six figure investment voided, just because they don't like the cut of your jib. Anywhere sane this would be considered tortious interference or worse.

It's fine if GoDaddy wants to disassociate itself from Gab: I believe in freedom of association, but the parting of ways must be done in a reasonable manner, not one which constitutes a punitive measure in and of itself. A simple and public, "we will not be offering you the option to renew with us," ought to suffice. If nothing else, you can't have a lasting free market economy when nonsense like this happens: potential investors observe the threat to capital, and the message is clear. And it's not just GoDaddy, and not just registrars: it's hosting providers and payment processors as well. Fricking everyone everywhere wants to be the Speech Police. Why did it suddenly become fashionable for tech companies to major on being moral busybodies? (Spoiler alert: "Trump.")

As far as I can tell, most of this because the creator of Gab dares to say that "hate speech" is an un-American concept, and he won't stand for censorship in its name. There's "hate speech" on Twitter, too — probably less of it, and of a more Politically Acceptable nature — but nobody is threatening to pull their plugs. Why not? Louis Farrakhan still gets to smugly pronounce he's "not anti-Semite," he's "anti-termite" on Twitter. Why the glaring great double standard? I think the answer is obvious: "hate speech" is just a convenient cover story for politically-motivated action.

The lesson in all of this is that if you want to be free from the new Silicon Valley tyranny of Political Correctness (and similar interference from Eurocrats, China, and a long list of other authoritarian elitists who imagine themselves your master and/or better), then everything has to be distributed and decentralised to the Nth degree. Absolute anarchy or bust: blockchains and hard crypto with no back-doors, and no apologies. Yes, this means terrible people will be able to communicate about terrible things. Tough. Silicon Valley has shown its disdain for the >95% of Gab users who were simply socialising harmlessly, and demonstrated that they are only too happy to de-platform anyone and everyone who dares affront their Progressive sensitivities. Thus the lines are drawn.

For those of you who hate the idea of anarchy (not naming names), then if and when it happens, remember the way Gab was treated, and the fact that it proved that Hard Anarchy was necessary, because getting along nicely was taken off the table.

If you don't like the sound of that, then how about speaking up for Free Speech and peaceful co-existence of differing political persuasions while it's still (possibly) a live option. Gab's down for now, but not out yet.

Which side are you going to take?

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