The social media site where synagogue shooter Robert Bowers liked to spend his time, Gab, is back online one week after being dropped by GoDaddy and several other sites.
A Seattle-based company, Epik, has agreed to accept the site’s domain registration, according to CBS News.
The account belonging to Bowers has been suspended, but there’s still plenty of hatred available on the website that commonly attracts anti-Semites and other racists, some of whom have been banned from Twitter and more mainstream social media sites.
After going back online Sunday, Gab posted a statement that it “will not be defined by the actions of one individual.”
That individual, Robert Bowers, opened fire in a Pittsburgh synagogue, killing 11 people.
Gab launched in 2016. The site founder and CEO, Andrew Torba, says the site is a bastion for free speech. Some well-known right-wing personalities use Gab, including conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and the founder of a neo-Nazi website.
Gab came back online, and immediately filled up with anti-semitism... pic.twitter.com/MIuYN5n9ML— ExPressBriefing (@ExPressBriefing) November 5, 2018
There is no Gab app available though the Apple App Store or on Google Play, according to the BBC.
“We will exercise every possible avenue to keep Gab online and defend free speech and individual liberty for all people,” said Andrew Torba of the site, as reported by USA Today.
PayPal, Shopify, Medium, Joyent, and other websites banned Gab last week.
“Although I did not take the decision lightly to accept this domain registration, I look forward to partnering with a young, and once brash, CEO who is courageously doing something that looks useful,” said Robert Monster, the CEO of Epik, according to The Verge.
With the site up and running again, users are free once more to post anti-Semitic messages. One user reminds all to “please remember it was the Jews who tried to shut this site down.”
There are somewhere between 465,000 and 800,000 users on the site.
“I can’t sit by and watch my people get slaughtered,” Robert Bowers wrote, just before he walked into the Tree of Life synagogue. “Screw your options, I’m going in.”
Here is our press release to the media:— Gab.com???? (@getongab) November 5, 2018
You failed. We are back online. We grow stronger by the hour. Free speech lives at https://t.co/J3Rfto6fi3. This is only the beginning. May God have mercy on you for what you people have done this past week. Peace, love, and prayers. ????????
Bowers often made ugly comments about Jews on his Gab profile, and posted pictures of himself and his gun collection, according to CNN.
“The problem is, there is a growing space in this country for hate speech. And hate speech always turns into hate actions. And that’s what we are seeing again and again this week,” said Mark Hetfield, Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS) chief executive. HIAS was mentioned in posts placed on Gab by Bowers.
Gab does not actively endorse or encourage hate, but the site has far fewer content restrictions than Twitter, Facebook, or more well-known social media sites. Racism, anti-Semitism and hate speech are allowed.