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Reddit Bans Pro-Trump Forum for Inciting Violence in Connection With U.S. Capitol Attack

Todd Spangler

Reddit on Friday said it banned r/donaldtrump — one of the biggest pro-Trump subreddits on the platform — after “repeated” violations of the site’s policy against inciting violence.

The move comes after hundreds of pro-Trump rioters, who were encouraged and praised by President Trump, overwhelmed police in Washington, D.C., to illegally occupy the U.S. Capitol building on Jan. 6. The melee instigated by the insurrectionist mob left at least five dead.

The r/donaldtrump forum had about 52,000 members before it was shut down. A notice on the page says, “This community was banned due to a violation of Reddit’s rules against inciting violence.”

“Reddit’s site-wide policies prohibit content that promotes hate, or encourages, glorifies, incites, or calls for violence against groups of people or individuals. In accordance with this, we have been proactively reaching out to moderators to remind them of our policies and to offer support or resources as needed. We have also taken action to ban the community r/donaldtrump given repeated policy violations in recent days regarding the violence at the U.S. Capitol.”

Reddit’s ban of r/donaldtrump, first reported by Axios, comes after other internet companies including Facebook, Twitch and Snapchat have taken actions to restrict President Trump’s accounts in the wake of the deadly U.S. Capitol. Twitter imposed a 12-hour suspension on @realDonaldTrump after he posted three tweets Wednesday that ran afoul of the social network’s rules before unfreezing it on Thursday.

In June 2020, after years of critics calling for Reddit to crack down on forums that promote violence, the company officially banned hate speech and disabled about 2,000 subreddits. Those included r/The_Donald, a pro-Donald Trump forum notorious for racist, misogynistic, anti-Islam and anti-Semitic posts.

Overall, Reddit says it had 52 million daily active users as of October 2020. The San Francisco-based company was founded in 2005; Condé Nast bought the site the following year before spinning it off in 2011 (with Condé Nast parent Advance Publications retaining a stake).