PayPal Bans Social Network After Pittsburgh Shooter’s Profile Surfaces

Celine Ryan | Contributor

Social network service Gab has been banned from using PayPal after the anti-Semitic profile of the man suspected of gunning down multiple people at a Pittsburgh synagogue Saturday morning gained attention.

Shortly after Robert Bowers’ anti-Semitic rants began to circulate online, PayPal sent the social networking site notice that it would be “terminating” its current relationship. PayPal offered no explanation to Gab for the decision, other than referencing PayPal’s right to make such a decision. (RELATED: Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting Suspect Identified As Robert Bowers)

However, in a statement to The Verge, PayPal made its reasoning more clear: “The company is diligent in performing reviews and taking account actions. When a site is explicitly allowing the perpetuation of hate, violence or discriminatory intolerance, we take immediate and decisive action.”

Gab brands itself as “The Home of Free Speech Online,” and promises its users that they are free to express any opinion, no matter how unsavory others may find it. However, the platform claims it took “swift and proactive action” by providing Bowers’ profile and user data to authorities as soon as it was aware that the the account existed. (RELATED: Trump Reacts To ‘Devastating’ Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting)

“We refuse to be defined by the media’s narratives about Gab and our community,” said the social media company. “Gab’s mission is very simple: to defend free expression and individual liberty online for all people. Social media often brings out the best and the worst of humanity.”

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