Months after being banned by Facebook, YouTube, Spotify and other major Internet platforms, InfoWars found new online distribution through the Roku platform. The company initially claimed it was providing for a diversity of views.
That changed in a hurry, as the online anger machine run by Alex Jones cranked into full outrage mode.
“After the InfoWars channel became available, we heard from concerned parties and have determined that the channel should be removed from our platform,” said Roku spokesman Eric Savitz. “Deletion from the channel store and platform has begun and will be completed shortly.”
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Earlier in the day, Roku had adopted a neutral stance, saying its customers could choose to control which channels they download or watch.
“While the vast majority of all streaming on our platform is mainstream entertainment, voices on all sides of an issue or cause are free to operate a channel. We do not curate or censor based on viewpoint,” Roku initially said in a statement.
Once technology publications like Digiday and TechCrunch reported that InfoWars had found mainstream distribution, critics flocked to social media to protest.
That revelation — coming within days of a legal victory by families of the 2012 shooting victims at Sandy Hook Elementary School in their defamation suit against Jones — sparked near instantaneous backlash against the streaming platform on social media.
Roku initially said InfoWars hasn’t run afoul of its use policies, which prohibit content that incites illegal activities or violates third-party rights.
“If we determine a channel violates these policies, it will be removed,” Roku said in a statement. “To our knowledge, InfoWars is not currently in violation of these content policies.”
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