In an article from Polygon this morning, it was revealed that Discord removed a number of alt-right, white nationalist servers from their service. Those ejected include Atomwaffen Division, The Right Server, Pagan Pathway, Fashlash, Uncensored Politics, Nordic Resistance Movement, Iron March and European Domas. Discord has been on a hunt for any server that may be preaching hateful content, especially since the riots in Charlottesville last year.
Discord released a statement last year in response to the riots, condemning their users from spreading similar, hateful messages:
We unequivocally condemn white supremacy, neonazism, or any other group, term, ideology that is based on these beliefs. They are not welcome on Discord. While we don’t read people’s private servers, our Terms of Service explicitly forbid harassment, threatening messages, or calls to violence.
One of the servers that Discord had their eye on at the time was Centipede Central, which remains active today despite being reported for hateful and harassing content. A discord representative spoke to Polygon about the matter back when it was happening:
The team has confirmed that they are aware of Centipede Central and will take action if they find CC is in violation of their terms of service and/or community guidelines. Discord takes a firm stand against this type of behavior on the platform.
Take a look at this picture of the server’s chat and tell me that there’s nothing wrong. You can’t.
Fast forward to the present time, where a number of servers have been shut down for an even more aggressive approach compared to Centipede Central, one that warrants the action taken against them. For example, those from Atomwaffen Division were known for having almost terrorist ideals. Their members were described as “accelerationists” and believed that ” violence, depravity and degeneracy are the only sure way to establish order in their dystopian and apocalyptic vision of the world.” They’ve been designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Discord and the Southern Poverty Law Center have been working together in an effort to rid the platform–and the internet as a whole–of hateful servers like the Atomwaffen Division. All of this is happening at the same time as YouTube’s dilemma with controlling its users, where one specifically, Logan Paul, has posted obscene videos all over the platform. YouTube has also banned any content from any active members posting on the behalf of the Atomwaffen Division, according to Motherboard.
A Discord representative told Polygon what their final say on the matter was:
Discord has a Terms of Service (ToS) and Community Guidelines that we ask all of our communities and users to adhere to. These specifically prohibit harassment, threatening messages, or calls to violence. Though we do not read people’s private messages, we do investigate and take immediate appropriate action against any reported ToS violation by a server or user. There were a handful of servers that violated these ToS recently and were swiftly removed from the platform.