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Twitter Suspends High Profile Alt-Right Accounts

Twitter suspended several alt-right accounts on Nov. 15 as part of an effort to stop hate speech.

Twitter said in a statement: "The Twitter Rules prohibit targeted abuse and harassment, and we will suspend accounts that violate this policy," notes USA TODAY.

"Alt-right" is short for alternative right, a movement that sees itself as intellectual and truly conservative, while at the same time espousing white supremacy, racist, anti-immigrant and sexist views.

Richard Spencer, seen by many as the founder of the alt-right movement, lost the Twitter handles @RichardBSpencer, @npiamerica (his alt-right group, National Policy Institute), @radixjournal (his website) and @washsummit (his publishing company).

"This is corporate Stalinism," Spencer complained to The Daily Caller. "Twitter is trying to airbrush the Alt Right out of existence. They’re clearly afraid. They will fail!"

More alt-righters who had their handles suspended included Paul Town, Pax Dickinson, Ricky Vaughn and John Rivers. Vaughn has referred to himself as an influential Twitter user.

Heidi Beirich, spokeswoman for the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), told USA TODAY that the SPLC requested that Twitter remove over 100 accounts of white supremacists.

"We are encouraged by the decisions taken by Twitter," Beirich stated. "Now it is a matter of whether they are carried out. Obviously, well-known white supremacists violate these terms of service and we are glad it appears that Twitter has chosen to step up on these issues."

Twitter banned alt-right hero Milo Yiannopoulos in July after he took part in a racist and sexist Twitter attack against African-American actress Leslie Jones.

BuzzFeed News noted on Nov. 10 how the alt-right movement was firmly behind Donald Trump during his presidential run:

As a megaphone for political discourse, Twitter was vital to the campaign of President-elect Donald Trump, who used 140 character missives to bypass the press, rake in earned media, program cable news talking points, and rally supporters. As a flat platform, Twitter did what it was supposed to. The result was the empowerment of the insurgent political movement of the alt-right who, through a coordinated effort of trolling and online organization, drove enthusiasm and momentum against the establishment and for Trump. Trolling and ideologies aside, the mechanics of this weren’t much different than those of the Iranian Revolution protestors, or the Arab Spring, or even Black Lives Matter, all of which Twitter was lauded for empowering.

Sources: USA TODAY, The Daily Caller, BuzzFeed News / Photo Credit:

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