Gab has returned: Let’s make it Epik!

In a globally-connected world, the battle to control the internet is a battle to control the world?s mind. The oligarchs of Silicon Valley have been acting like any other totalitarian regime, as they target site after site, blog after blog, user after user, in a relentless war of attrition to stamp out free expression.

Social network Gab has been one of their most high-value targets. Gab was founded with an explicit mission of being a haven of free speech. The Silicon Valley titans threw every weapon in their arsenal at them. Gab was outlawed from popular app stores, and then it was banned by hosting and payment services. The media relentlessly lied about it.

Caption: A study of Gab users showed that most were centrists, while the site generally leaned right. Extreme right-wingers are a tiny fringe (-1 indicates extreme right, +1 extreme left. Users between -0.03 and +0.03 are considered neutral or moderate.). Source: Lima, et al 2018.

When an anti-Semitic terrorist was shown to be a Gab user, the totalitarian censors pounced. Gab alone of the social media platforms was held responsible for the actions of one of its users, and summarily scrubbed from the face of the internet.

But, finally, one tech company has stepped up to the plate of free expression. Epik, the domain registrar and host dubbed ?The Swiss Bank of Domains?, has announced that it has agreed to host Gab.?The site went live again on 4 November. Quote:

[The] de-platforming of Gab generated much discussion in the mainstream technology press?As the news broke, and as some elements in the mainstream media rendered their judgement, I embarked on my own search for truth. Along the way, I did have an opportunity to meet with the Founder of Gab, Andrew Torba, an entrepreneur who was willing to swim against the tide for what he believes is right, namely empowering netizens to discuss openly about matters of mutual interest with limited risk of censorship.

Although, I did not take the decision lightly to accept this domain registration, I look forward to partnering with a young, and once brash, CEO who is courageously doing something that looks useful. As I reflect on my own journey as a truth-seeking tech entrepreneur, I have no doubt that Andrew will continue to develop not only as tech entrepreneur but also as a responsible steward. End of quote.

The references to ?responsible stewardship? seem to suggest that Torba will be moderating his previously no-holds-barred approach to free expression. Indeed, on Gab’s first day back, Torba posted to remind users not to tolerate, and to report violations of its terms of service. He specifically cited doxxing, threats, and impersonations.

How that will fit in with Gab?s ?wild west? style remains to be seen. But the fact that the platform will live again must be celebrated as a major victory in the Free Speech Wars.

Epik takes the founding ethos of liberal democracy seriously. Quote:

De-platforming a haven of free speech is not about left or right. Anyone who remembers studying civics is familiar with the concept of inalienable rights ? rights that a worthy government can only protect but would have no moral authority to take away?Tolerance for competing views ? including those protected by Freedom of Speech and Freedom of Press ? is not an American concept even though the Founding Fathers of the United States built a prosperous nation around the concept.

These days there are many kinds of online content that some people find objectionable. When it comes to publishing content, online or offline, there is an interplay between free will and personal responsibility. Specific to Gab, the decision to not only tolerate but to welcome competing views, does come with a responsibility to take action when free will is exhibited without personal responsibility. This was famously illustrated in the opinion rendered by Supreme Court in Watt vs. United States (1969) where threats of violence was deemed unlawful.

In the case of, there is a duty to monitor and lightly curate, keeping content within the bounds of the law. End of quote.

Epik is well aware that a battle is raging across the internet. Quote:

Let Freedom Ring

To the casual observer, the case of seems like it is something new. It is not. It is history repeating itself. While there are consequences to actions, there is also the proverbial risk of throwing out the baby with the bathwater. My hope, for all of our sakes, is that treads wisely, using its liberty for the betterment of most, and the enlightenment of all. End of quote.

My hope, as well, is that Epik weathers the storm that is going to hit them. The totalitarian left are relentless and vicious. Epik will be subjected to a torrent of harassment, abuse and attempted economic sabotage from the st?rmabteilung at Sleeping Giants and Antifa.

But they must surely have been aware of this when they signed up Gab.

So, once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more…when the blast of war blows in our ears, then imitate the action of the tiger.