PayPal to cut off donations to right-wing YouTuber Stefan Molyneux following social media divestment campaign
PayPal's move to exclude Molyneux from their service is its latest rebuke to far-right ideologues. The company has previously stopped services to the KKK and other right-wing organizations.
PayPal is working to end their services for far-right YouTuber Stefan Molyneux, the internet personality behind such viral videos as "The Story of Your Enslavement," "Take the Red Pill" and "The Flat Earth Conspiracy Debate." The online payment platform confirmed the termination in a statement shared with Newsweek, writing that "After conducting an extensive review, PayPal has made the decision to discontinue our business relationship with Stefan Molyneux."
PayPal's decision to remove Molyneux from their service is an injurious rebuke to the far-right personality, as much of his income has come from fan gifts, including recurring donations through PayPal.
Many of Molyneux's videos feature him simply looking into the camera and sharing his views. Views that have "grown more blatantly extreme and anti-Semitic" of late, according to Right Wing Watch. The self-described philosopher's musings also caught the attention of Sleeping Giants, an activist organization that aims to convince advertisers to pull promotions from news outlets that promote bigoted ideologies.
His show "Freedomain Radio" often features him discussing ideas that the alt-right has embraced such as white genocide conspiracy theories, the men's rights movement and gun rights. The Canadian vlogger's videos often feature sensationalist titles such as "The Truth about Canada's Elections Part 1: Immigration", "Sugar Baby Feminism", and "Dangerous Snowflakes-Where 'Triggered' REALLY Comes From."
Sleeping Giants co-founder Nandini Jammi first made efforts to bring Molyneux's content to PayPal's attention in April, she told Right Wing Watch. On October 14, she retweeted a post displaying screenshots of Molyneux's Twitter activity promoting anti-Semitic conspiracy theories regarding the media. Jammi encouraged her followers to contact PayPal directly and ask why Molyneux was still allowed to use the platform.
Jammi has encouraged multiple fintech companies to stop processing payments for far-right public figures and organizations this year. On June 25, she penned an open letter to Mastercard and also publicly called on Stripe, Square, and PayPal to be aware of the organizations that they enable financially.
While PayPal has previously severed ties with extremist groups and individuals including the Ku Klux Klan, the Proud Boys and Alex Jones, Jammi theorized that Molyneux managed to evade investigation by calling himself a "philosopher" rather than a white nationalist. "Suspending Stefan Molyneux should have been an open-and-shut case," Jammi told Right Wing Watch.
Jammi also said now that PayPal has cut ties with Molyneux, he will probably face some difficulty finding a new service to accept donations. "No one's going to want to touch him." She also noted, "I think he's going to find himself bouncing around between payment processors."
Molyneux did not respond to Newsweek'srequest for comment. As of Tuesday afternoon, Molyneux's YouTube videos and website still advertised PayPal donation links next to a marketing pitch: "With your support, I am able to continue adding content to the platform ..."
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Shut it down
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