Pundits Jordan Peterson and Dave Rubin rang in the New Year by making a joint announcement that both would be leaving the online funding platform
Patreon in a matter of weeks.
What are the details?
In a 31-minute video posted by Rubin's "The Rubin Report" YouTube channel on Tuesday, the two explained their reasoning by saying that while they were grateful for the services provided by Patreon in the past — the site's censorship methods have led them to the decision to each part ways with the platform starting Jan. 15.
"This is about making a stand against this ever-moving encroachment on free speech, on free expression and the rest of it," Rubin said.
Both pundits noted that they were taking a huge risk by abandoning the funding source, but criticized the site's banning of conservative voices.
News of Peterson and Rubin's departures isn't a surprise. Two weeks ago, Peterson told his 1.6 million subscribers on YouTube that he and Rubin were in talks with others to develop an alternative platform to rival Patreon, which would "allow authors and other people who engage publicly on intellectual issues to interact more effectively with their readers and viewers and listeners."
During the New Year's Day video, Peterson said that while he had hoped to have an alternative site up and running by Jan. 15, it would take longer than that because it was still under development and they wanted it to be operational on a scale comparable to Patreon.
Several times during the departure announcement video, Peterson voiced concerns over the "Change the Terms" initiative — a set of guidelines drafted by the Center for American Progress, the Southern Poverty Law Center, and other liberal organizations for the purpose of controlling online speech under the guise of "reducing hate online."
According to the Change the Terms website, it has created "recommended corporate policies and terms of service to ensure that social media platforms, payment service providers, and other internet-based services are not places where hateful activities and extremism can grow."
In introducing its goals, Change the Terms explains, "Just as the internet has created immense positive value by connecting people and creating new communities, it has also given new tools to those who want to hatefully threaten, harass, intimidate, defame, or even violently attack people different from themselves.
"White supremacists and other organizations engaged in these sorts of hateful activities use social media and other major tech platforms to mobilize, organize, fundraise, and normalize racism, sexism, bigotry, and xenophobia," the statement continues. "In the past few years, hate activity has grown significantly as the 'alt-right' emerged from the shadows."
Referring to Change the Terms, Peterson said, "The fundamental problem to me seems to be ... that a whole variety of companies and organizations spearheaded — not least by the Southern Poverty Law Center, that hateful organization — that has decided that they're going to compel, encourage, defame, perhaps, companies who don't ban together to regulate what they see as hate speech."