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Researcher who helped kick Infowars's Alex Jones off Spotify received death threats

Right Wing Watch researcher Jared Holt says he received death threats after he helped spark the campaign that led to InfoWars's Alex Jones being pulled from Spotify, among other social media platforms.

“What has it been like for you personally since you were sort of publicly involved in this,” Hill.TV co-host Krystal Ball asked.

“Death threats, a lot of death threats and just relentless harassment — these Alex Jones fans really know no bounds,” Holt said.

Jones is known for spreading conspiracy theories, including that the Sandy Hook shooting was a hoax, and has amassed millions of subscribers across his social platforms. 

Holt said Infowars listeners and Jones fans have been targeting him on his personal social media profiles, sending him pictures of Auschwitz death camps and telling him “to hang by a noose.”

The researcher said he initially raised the issue by tweeting about it, which caught the eye of progressive groups like Sleeping Giants. But he argues there was no real calculation behind his efforts, saying he just happened to be on Spotify one day when he noticed that Infowars was on there.

“As someone who has my own podcast as from Right Wing Watch, and has struggled to get it on Spotify, I thought it was kind of weird that Alex Jones got on. …Once that was on the national attention, that sort of raised the interest of some reporters who asked other tech companies about their decisions to host Alex Jones,” Holt said.

Several tech giants, including Apple, Facebook, Spotify and Google, all banned Infowars within 12 hours of each other.

Facebook issued a statement after shutting down several of Jones's pages for “glorifying violence,” and violating the platform’s graphic violence policy. YouTube yanked TheAlexJonesChannel, saying it violated the website's terms of service that prohibits hate speech.

Right Wing Watch is a project of the progressive organization People for the American Way. It says it is dedicated to "monitoring and exposing the activities and rhetoric of right-wing activists and organizations in order to expose their extreme agenda."

— Tess Bonn