Twitter permanently suspended at least four Infowars-affiliated accounts Thursday for violating the website’s policy against ban evasion, including a verified account used by one of the networks’ hosts that had accumulated more than 150,000 followers.
According to Twitter, the accounts used by Infowars employees violated the site’s platform manipulation and spam policy, specifically rules against “creating accounts to replace or mimic a suspended account.”
Twitter suspended Infowars and its conspiracy theorist founder Alex Jones in September 2018 for multiple violations of site policy. The next month, CNN reported that Twitter removed more than a dozen additional accounts affiliated with Infowars “in part, for attempting to help InfoWars and its founder, conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, circumvent the ban Twitter placed on them.”
On Thursday, Twitter suspended the accounts used by Owen Shroyer, host of the Infowars program “War Room,” and Infowars news director Rob Dew. It also suspended an account called “Off Limits News,” which was used by Infowars contributor Harrison Smith, and an account called “Banned Video,” which linked to the platform that currently hosts Infowars’ video content. Right Wing Watch emailed Infowars to inquire whether additional Infowars-linked accounts were suspended but did not receive a response prior to publication.
A core part of Infowars’ latest strategy to skirt around the network’s nearly universal bans from social media has been the formation of satellite properties with names like “Summit News” and “Action 7” that are run by Infowars employees, who upload Infowars content without Infowars branding to the social media sites. The content posted on the ban-free satellite properties is typically cross-published and aired on Infowars programs. For approximately a year, Infowars has successfully used this tactic to exploit apparent loopholes in social media platform policies.
Several Infowars-affiliated accounts remain untouched on Twitter, including but not limited to:
- Paul Joseph Watson (@PrisonPlanet), a U.K.-based Infowars editor-at-large who currently writes content for a blog called “Summit News” to be cross-posted to Infowars;
- Millie Weaver (@millie__weaver), an Infowars contributor who uploads content to a YouTube channel called “Millennial Millie” to be cross-posted and broadcast on Infowars;
- David Knight (@libertytarian), host of the Infowars program “Real News with David Knight”;
- Savanah Hernandez (@sav_says_), an Infowars contributor who posts video to a YouTube channel called “Action 7” to be cross-posted to Infowars;
- Daria Russkaya (@roarmittens), an Infowars producer;
- Dan Lyman (@CitizenAnalyst), an Infowars’ “foreign correspondent” based in Europe; and
- John Bowne (@NewsBowne), an Infowars contributor.