Internet message board 8chan has been deplatformed once again and the owner has been called to testify before Congress about a reported connection between the board and the El Paso massacre shooter. 8chan was initially dropped before Cloudflare following the news that a manifesto allegedly belonging to the El Paso shooter was posted on the message board. The manifesto has not yet been confirmed to belong to the shooter.
On Tuesday, 8chan was dropped by its new technical services provider, Epik. “8chan was offline on Tuesday after Seattle-based Epik became the latest provider to cut ties. In a statement, Epik’s chief executive, Rob Monster, cited concerns about its inadequate enforcement and a greater possibility of violent radicalization.” The owner of 8chan Jim Watkins posted a video on YouTube saying that the alleged shooter manifesto was not originally posted on the message board but copied from Instagram. Reuters doesn’t mention this in their story.
House of Representatives Homeland Security Committee wants to talk to Watkins.
The committee’s Democratic chairman, Bennie Thompson, and Mike Rogers, its ranking Republican, sent a letter tmsnrt.rs/2YuWNQ7 to Watkins to appear, calling the El Paso massacre “at least the third act of supremacist violence linked to your website this year.”
Although Epik has dropped 8chan, the company continues to host The Daily Stormer, Gab and InfoWars. Epik owner Monster explained that 8chan was different than the other sites because “nobody has a vested interest in personal accountability, since you always get a new persona,” he said.
“Think of 8chan as a large community of 1 million people that are now looking for a home,” Watkins said in a video he posted on YouTube. Keep looking, Jim.
(MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)