Social media platform used by suspected Pittsburgh shooter goes offline

Social media platform used by suspected Pittsburgh shooter goes offline
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The social media company used by the suspected Pittsburgh synagogue shooter to post anti-Semitic comments has gone offline.

Gab says in a message on its website that it is "under attack" and has been “systematically no-platformed” by hosting websites and other services.

A spokesman for GoDaddy told Reuters that the hosting site asked Gab to move to another registrar following the shooting, saying the social media platform hosted content that violated its terms of service.

“We have informed Gab.com that they have 24 hours to move the domain to another registrar,” the spokesman said, adding that some of the content on Gab “promotes and encourages violence against people.”

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Gab, which describes itself as “The Home Of Free Speech Online,” has faced criticism for allowing prominent right-wing and neo-Nazi figures to use the site.

Robert Bowers, the man charged with killing 11 people during religious services at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue, posted on his page that “jews are the children of satan.”

Gab in a statement denied any responsibility for the shooting.

“Gab.com’s policy on terrorism and violence have always been very clear: we [have] zero tolerance for it. Gab unequivocally disavows and condemns all acts of terrorism and violence,” Gab said. “This has always been our policy. We are saddened and disgusted by the news of violence in Pittsburgh and are keeping the families and friends of all victims in our thoughts and prayers.”

The temporary message on Gab's the website says the company has been “smeared by the mainstream media” for its defense of free speech, and “for working with law enforcement to ensure that justice is served for the horrible atrocity committed in Pittsburgh.”

Gab says it is working “around the clock” to transition to a new hosting provider and will be offline until that happens.

The platform was kicked off PayPal the day of the shooting, and has also been banned from Stripe, another payment processing platform, according to Reuters.