Cloudflare, a company that offers web space on the internet, has decided after several days of hesitation to block Kiwi Farms and no longer allow visitors to access it. On that controversial website, visitors staged hateful campaigns against LGBTQ+ individuals, so Cloudflare categorized the site as “an imminent danger to human life.”
“This is an exceptional decision for us. A dangerous one too, because our role as a provider of internet infrastructure makes us not comfortable with this.” And yet Cloudfare decided to block Kiwi Farms, CEO Matthew Prince wrote in a post on his company’s blog. As a result, the site is no longer accessible. If you enter the url in his or her browser, you will automatically be taken to Prince’s blog post.
Kiwi Farms is a forum that has been used by many people as a place to doxx people from the LGBTQ+ community (searching and distributing personal information, ed.), and instigate hate campaigns against them. In recent years, this has led to the suicide of a target of such a campaign at least three times and other victims have already testified many times about the serious mental consequences of this.
According to Prince, there has been an escalation in rhetoric and “specific, targeted threats” in recent days. “We took this action because people’s lives were threatened.” The pressure on his company had increased in particular since the hate campaigns against Clara Sorrenti, a well-known Canadian trans activist who uses the Twitch channel to stream content. He went into hiding out of fear after private information was made public and even physical threats were made.
The campaigns were set up through Kiwi Farms, so calls were circulating on social media for Cloudflare to block the controversial website. That wasn’t the first time: it also happened in March 2019, when Brenton Tarrant carried out a massacre at a mosque in Christchurch. His manifesto and the live stream, in which you saw him kill, remained publicly available on the site for a long time. The people behind the site also refused to give police email addresses of people who continued to post the video.
Cloudflare indicated in recent days that it was first considering a block and then that it could not make it. Now that it’s putting a stop to the hate campaigns, it’s getting praise on social media.
Kiwi Farms founder Joshua Moon has yet to respond to the fuss. He himself – not coincidentally one of the founders of 8Chan, that other controversial website – and the other people behind the forum are now free to turn to another provider to get their site up and running again, although it is not clear whether that will has already happened and whether they will stand for it.
READ ALSO. The place for total freedom of speech that became a cesspool of hate, murder and porn: the downfall of 8chan
Those who did respond are the driving forces behind the dropkiwifarms campaign. “This battle has been won, but the war is not over,” they wrote in a statement.
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