Apple, Facebook ban content of USA conspiracy theorist Alex Jones

Alex Jones' personal YouTube channel, "The Alex Jones Channel", has been terminated for violating the website's community guidelines, the website announced on Monday.

In its statement, the company said it removed the pages "for glorifying violence, which violates our graphic violence policy, and using dehumanising language to describe people who are transgender, Muslims and immigrants, which violates our hate speech policies".

Last week, YouTube also took action against Jones, banning InfoWars from its live-streaming platform for three months.

Technology companies Apple and Facebook have deleted content belonging to United States far-right conspiracy theorist Alex Jones from their platforms, alleging hate speech, glorified violence and other violations of policies.

"When users violate these policies repeatedly, like our policies against hate speech and harassment or our terms prohibiting circumvention of our enforcement measures, we terminate their accounts", the company said in an email. It has suggested that the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax, and that the September 11 terrorist attacks were an inside job orchestrated by the USA government.

Although Infowars promotes some conspiracy theories that are far outside the mainstream - for example, that 9/11 was actually orchestrated by the USA government - it also reports on current events just as other media do. Twitter, which hasn't banned Jones, has also faced similar calls.

A number of platforms have suspended or removed some of the radio host's conspiracy-driven content in recent weeks for violating hate content policies.

These moves could impact how Jones' message reaches people given his media company largely operates online. Facebook had already banned Jones for 30 days because he had violated its community standards.

iTunes was not the only way Jones distributed his podcasts, but BuzzFeed reported that Apple's platform is the largest podcast index on the Internet.

The controversial nature of Infowars prompted journalists and the public to question why Facebook and YouTube allowed the site's content onto their platforms as both companies fight fake news and abuse.

Alex Jones from Infowars.com speaks during a rally in support of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump near the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., July 18, 2016. But the company did not give specifics on Jones or Infowars.

Facebook and Spotify have also removed InfoWars' content. Several families affected by the shooting, and an Federal Bureau of Investigation agent who responded to the attack, have sued Jones for defamation.

Monday marks exactly three months before the November 6 midterm elections - timing that had Jones and Infowars crying foul.

InfoWars did not immediately respond to a request for comment sent outside business hours.

YouTube is moving slowly but surely to remove all traces of Alex Jones from its channels.

  • Jon Douglas