Reddit banned its main forum dedicated to the spread of the QAnon conspiracy Wednesday, after redditors posted threats and incited violence.
“We are very clear in our site terms of service that posting content that incites violence, disseminates personal information, or harasses will get users and communities banned from Reddit.”
Reddit also banned the backup forum r/the_greatawakening, having previously culled another QAnon community called r/CBTS (Calm Before The Storm), which boasted more than 20,000 subscribers.
At the time of being banned, the r/greatawakening forum enjoyed more than 70,000 subscribers.
Reddit had become the central conduit through which the conspiracy theory, which originated on 4Chan, moved from the hinterlands of the online world to a mainstream audience.
The theory is based on the postings of Q, who claims to be a senior security official in the Trump administration. Q claims that Trump is the target of a coup being organized by the “deep state” and — among others — Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and George Soros.
The group also believes Trump intentionally colluded with Russia just so he could hire Mueller who is secretly launching a countercoup.
Oh, and it also thinks Hollywood is full of pedophiles and the Rothschild family are the leaders of a satanic cult.
It’s latest conspiracy claims the late Sen. John McCain was murdered as part of a purge of Trump’s enemies.
Reddit’s actions are a blow to the movement, however the credulous are likely to find several new homes.
There is already a new QAnon thread up-and-running on Reddit, while many subscribers of the original thread have migrated to Voat — a website where communities too hateful or toxic for Reddit have often been welcomed.
There has also been a new forum created on image-sharing site 8Chan for r/greatawakening refugees.
Of course, for QAnon supporters Reddit’s decision only reinforces their belief that technology companies are part of the wider conspiracy:
Cover image: An attendee holds signs a sign of the letter 'Q' before the start of a rally with U.S. President Donald Trump in Lewis Center, Ohio, U.S., on Saturday, Aug. 4, 2018. (Maddie McGarvey/Bloomberg via Getty Images)