After years of violating the terms of service (TOS) agreements for Facebook, YouTube, Spotify, Apple and Twitter, four of the five platforms finally removed Alex Jones and his Infowars content from their sites and banned him. Twitter—after a CNN expose gave examples of the many times Jones also violated their TOS—eventually gave both Jones and Infowars a brief suspension on their platform as well.
As a result of repeatedly violating the various platforms’ terms of service, Jones got banned. And because Jones got banned, his revenue dropped drastically.
For those unfamiliar with Jones, his Infowars program consists of theatrical, ranting presentations of conspiracy theories interspersed with plugs for his survivalist gear and nutritional supplements. In the past, Jones stated the attacks on 9/11 were an inside job, liberals planned to start a civil war on July 4, 2018, and school shootings were hoaxes. He also called for his listeners to take up weapons against various people of groups he deemed enemies.
Much of the hate speech and calls for violence in Jones’ rants violates various TOS he agreed to when setting up on the platforms that banned him. But facing a much smaller reach and revenue stream, Jones now touts a new conspiracy theory painting himself as the victim of a vast left wing Democratic effort to deplatform conservative voices on social media.
Jones still operates his own website, but he maintains it is his right to force other private companies to allow his content on their platforms even if it does violate their terms of service. He fails to explain why, except to claim it is a conspiracy against him because he is a conservative voice.
For reasons of self-promotion, Jones attended a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on Wednesday. The stated purpose of the meeting involved election interference on social media. But because executives from Google, Facebook and Twitter attended, Jones declared he should testify and the stated purpose of the hearing should change to match his personal agenda.
That failed to happen.
Instead, Jones waited for a press gaggle to form during a hearing break so he could interrupt it. He got his chance when Florida Republican Senator Marco Rubio stopped in the hallway outside the hearing to take questions from a few reporters.
Jones immediately interrupted both the reporters asking questions and Rubio when he attempted to answer them.
Watch CNBC footage—where Jones can be heard clearly—here:
— CNBC (@CNBC) September 5, 2018
And HillTV footage from a different angle—where Jones can be seen clearly but not always heard—here:
— HILLTV (@HillTVLive) September 5, 2018
During the course of the exchange, Rubio continues to ask who Jones is, both to the reporters in front of him and to Jones himself. Jones repeats his website url several times and claims Rubio “knows who Infowars is” because Jones has “tens of billions of views” and is “bigger than Rush Limbaugh.”
Jones tries several times to get cameras and the reporters to focus on him as well as get Rubio’s attention. By interrupting Rubio…