Prominent Canadian right-wing commentator and activist Lauren Southern, famous of exposing the hollowness of feminists and social justice warriors, had her account on membership platform Patreon terminated and thus her primary source of income cut off completely. It is clear from this action that Patreon joins other prominent social media platforms in censoring right-wing, conservative and alt-right accounts under the guise of their community guidelines against so called hate speech.
Lauren Southern was previously a commentator with the Rebel Media but left in March 2017 to become independent so she could have the freedom to cover various public events such as the Battle of Berkeley and Migrant Crisis in Europe. She utilized Patreon to fund her independence and at last check she was earning over $4,000 a month.
The justification that Patreon gave to Southern as the reason for her account’s termination without any possibility of an appeal, is they claimed that her association with Defend Europe, a group which aims to stop the inflow of illegal boat arrivals into Europe meant her Patreon account was “raising funds in order to take part in activities that are likely to cause loss of life”.
Southern claims that none the funds she raised from Patreon were being funnelled to Defend Europe and also disputes the fact that they are an organisation that puts lives at risk. The actual reality is that it is the pro-illegal immigration groups in Europe who facilitate these boat journeys of migrants that put people’s lives at risk.
Lauren has now experienced the full brunt of social media deplatfroming. She has previously been subject to several Facebook bans and her videos on YouTube were constantly demonetizated because they were not advertiser friendly. A YouTube policy she satirised by posting an innocent make-up tutorial to see if she could monetize it.
Many alt-media personalities such as Mark Dice and Some Black Guy have now had to have greater reliance on Patreon for their online income in the face of YouTube’s growing video demonetization. Now it looks as though Patreon now might be joining in on the efforts to censor alt media views as part of their companies so called social corporate responsibility, and so they don’t get accused by social justice warriors of facilitating hate speech.
Many have been quick to point the inconsistencies of Patreon’s community guidelines. Patreon has taken no action against an Antifa website It’s Going Down which earns over $1,100 a month through Patreon, despite the fact it the site promotes violence towards police officers and “capitalists”. When this was brought to the attention of a Patreon staff member they thought It’s Gown Down was a virtuous organisation. Patreon also facilitates the income of creators of pornographic content.
There were signs that Patreon was heading down the same no-platforming path of other social media companies. They have already terminated the accounts of alt-right podcaster Christopher Cantwell and Australian YouTuber Love Life and Anarchy (who has been a guest on our podcast) for hate speech violations. Patreon is currently home to many popular anti-social justice warrior YouTubers and one wonders if their accounts will be the next to be terminated.
Of course, Patreon is a private company and does have the right in a free society to decide who can use its service as part of freedom of association. Though one can question whether social media companies, which are so influential in modern world are hurting the exchange of ideas and the concept of the open society.
Thankfully Patreon is not the sole platform for online content creators to earn an income. What made Patreon such a popular platform was that it had no flat monthly fees and did not require you to have your own website. Lauren Southern has already set up at a new membership website appropriately titled patreonsucks.com which offers the same member rewards as patrons received.
There are other membership software programs that can be used by online creators (for now) but the downside of these are they often have significant overhead costs which Patreon did not have. This is why anarcho-capitalist Cody Wilson, creator of the 3D printed gun, created an alternative to Patreon for those alt-media commentators who had fallen foul of the Patreon community guidelines. Ironically called Hatreon.
Currently The Unshackled raises funds through Patreon, we will not know how long we will last (especially since we are speaking out against its banning of Southern) as is often the case with these social media companies they do not warn you when they are about to cut you off. But we will of course explore alternatives so we are not at the mercy social media leftists.