went offline Sunday night after both its hosting provider and domain name host cancelled their business relationships with the Twitter-like service used by members of the fringe right.
The backlash against Gab comes after news broke that the service was frequented by Robert Bowers, who allegedly shot and killed 11 people at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh Saturday morning. Bowers had an active account on Gab, which he used to post anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, with some posts claiming that the migrant caravan across Mexico was the work of a Jewish conspiracy.
Gab took down Bowers’ account following the shooting, but the company has spent much of the weekend defending posts like those made by Bowers as free speech. As a result, Gab was dropped by cloud hosting provider Joyent as well as payment processing providers PayPal and Stripe.
When domain name provider GoDaddy gave the company 24 hours to move its service elsewhere, Gab pulled the plug, telling followers on Twitter that it would be inaccessible for “a period of time.”
Gab’s attempts to restore its service seem to be complicated by the fact that the company doesn’t own its domain name outright, but instead is under a payment plan — something that’s not uncommon for high-value domain names, including any domains consisting of just three letters.
Gab isn’t the only company under scrutiny over not banning extremist views. Last week, news broke that the Florida man suspected of mailing over a dozen pipe bombs to senior Democrats had previously threatened critics of President Trump on Twitter.
Twitter responded to this by saying that it had erred to leave the tweets in question available on its service. “We want Twitter to be a place where people feel safe, and we know we have a lot of work to do,” the company said in a tweet.
A New York City gun-toting rabbi is campaigning for Jewish congregants to arm themselves in the wake of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting, which saw an anti-Semitic gunman kill 11 people Saturday.
Rabbi Gary Moskowitz, a former cop and longstanding proponent for armed congregants, met on Sunday with members of his organization, the International Security Coalition of Clergy, to discuss how to publicize their campaign, The New York Post reported.
“You must have it,” Moskowitz said of the call to arm Jews in synagogues. “A guy comes in with a gun, and what can they do? Throw chairs at them? We’re sitting ducks here.”
It has been a fiercely debated topic over the years.
Jewish Action magazine pointed toward the Torah for direction, noting there are halachic issues arising from bringing a weapon into a synagogue.
Matthew Chase, an attorney and devout Jew, noted the conflict of interest.
“I certainly don’t want to find myself staging a gun battle in my sanctuary,” he wrote for The Daily Caller. “But would I prefer a massacre of my fellow congregants? Never again.”
Moskowitz said that “several people in every synagogue should have the right to carry a premise permit,” according to The Post.
He has gained the support of other rabbis, including Rabbi Joseph Potasnik, executive vice president of the New York Board of Rabbis.
“I’m in favor,” he said. “I would like to see some protection. It could serve as a deterrent.”
Rabbi Dr. Tzemah Yoreh, leader of The City Congregation, admitted to The Post that he felt conflicted on the matter but understood the call to arm congregants.
“On the one hand, we want to celebrate openness and freedom of worship and have people come into sanctuaries and not be impeded,” Yoreh said. “On the other hand, people in my community are really scared.”