Gab, one of the earliest free speech friendly alternatives to the established social media platforms, may be forced out of Germany due to the government’s insistence that it censors its users, according to CEO and founder Andrew Torba.
In a post on the platform, Torba said the threat of fines and legal pressure from the German government presented them with three choices: comply with the demands and censor the platform’s users, engage in a prolonged, costly, and likely doomed legal fight with the German government, or stop providing services to German users.
Recently the German government has been coming at Gab hard to try and force us to comply with their draconian online censorship laws. We have obviously refused to do so and now they are coming after us with fines of tens of thousands of dollars and other legal action. Our lawyers informed us that we have three options:
1) Obey German censorship laws and start censoring content that the German Govt doesn’t like (not going to happen)
2) Disobey German censorship laws and pick a fight with the nation state of Germany (I wouldn’t ever be able to leave the US again, they would come at us from every possible angle through state-sponsored deplatforming, and Lord knows what else.)
3) Cease providing this service in Germany by blocking German IPs.
So obviously a very difficult decision, but one that must be made very soon. I wanted to share with you all to be fully transparent with what is going on.
Germany was one of the earliest governments to begin pressuring tech companies to censor their users. In 2015, German chancellor Angela Merkel was caught on a hot mic urging Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg to tackle “hate speech” on the platform.
Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News. He is the author of #DELETED: Big Tech’s Battle to Erase the Trump Movement and Steal The Election.