ProudBoys UK has been permanently banned from Twitter in another case of Big Tech cracking down on the free-speech of right-wing voices.
‘The ProudBoys’ is a men’s social club, which describes themselves as ‘Patriots and Pro-Brexit in terms of politics and respects traditional family values, they also attended the Day for Freedom rally in London in May.
ProudBoys was founded by Vice co-founder Gavin McInnes, they are regularly smeared as ‘far right’ but McInnes has denied that his group is racist, and he and other Proud Boys point to the presence of non-white members.
They also regularly meet up for national meets and say “that’s really what we are about. Meeting, drinking and having fun”
Speaking exclusively to Politicalite, a representative from PB:UK said: “We’re not actually sure on any specific reason as to why we were banned, Twitter only notified us that we had broken their terms and conditions but [did] not actually provide any example.”
Twitter also issued a warning that if the group tried to make any other accounts of a varying name, they would ban those too.
PBUK sent a screenshot of a message from Twitter that did not give any reason for the ban, the message says they have been banned “specifically for…” but adds no reason.
ProudBoys UK has not had any official Twitter accounts before and was only recently set up in the last four weeks.
Twitter suspended numerous accounts associated with the right-wing group in the states on the eve of the anniversary of the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville.
Verified accounts belonging to the group and its founder, Gavin McInnes, were suspended for violating the platform’s policy against “violent extremist groups”, a company spokeswoman confirmed to The Guardian.
We asked PBUK if they thought the ban was related to this, they said: “We do think it is related yes, Twitter seems to specifically be using words such as “extremist group” when asked to justify bans.”
“It started with Gavin then snowballed down into many PB accounts.”
“We all share a forum globally and a few from around the world told us their Twitter accounts had also been banned. We were waiting for it really” said PBUK.
They added that “There is an agenda there, I think that’s obvious to see.”
PB also asked Why are big tech deciding what is classified as hate speech or extremism?
“As platforms for so-called free speech, they should be impartial. That’s clearly not happening.”
Politicalite has contacted Twitter for comment.