The QAnon movement all started with one unfounded 4chan post by a user going by “Q.”
According to QAnon rhetoric, there is a powerful “global network of baby eating demonic pedophiles” that Donald Trump is trying to save the world from. Trump is secretly working hand-in-hand with Robert Mueller to accomplish this nearly-impossible task.
Why is it nearly impossible?
Because that “global network” is allegedly made up of some of the most elite members of society. QAnon believers purport the network is made up of the very wealthy and very famous, so they are particularly hard to prosecute.
But Donald Trump will save the day.
As the movement grew from just as few conspiracy theorists on 4chan, things started to get out of hand. QAnon conspiracy theorists began showing up at Trump rallies, spread the rumor that John McCain was assassinated and frequently select a target and “dox” them.
Doxxing is the release of personal/private information to the internet in order to encourage people to harass the person.
Eventually, Reddit was forced to step in and shut down a subreddit created as a gathering place for QAnon believers—since almost no one uses 4chan because of who is on it. The Subreddit—called r/GreatAwakening—got removed for “inciting violence, harassment, and the dissemination of personal information.”
Users who tried to visit the subreddit were greeted with the following message:
There was a backup page called r/The_GreatAwakening, but that was also booted.
Reddit also took out other QAnon subreddits like /biblicalQ and /Qincels. But QAnon subreddits aren’t the only ones finding themselves shut down.
Reddit also took down several pages that supported a popular white supremacist, alt-right comedy group. The removal of a large number of pages popular with QAnon believers failed to go over well with them.
Here’s a censored screenshot of one of their reactions. It was censored for language. Obviously.
Twitter and Reddit are honestly pretty excited to see the hate speech and doxxing pages go.
Oh thank Glub! That was a snake pit of insanity mixed with idiocy!— Randy Flagg (@WalkinDude71) September 12, 2018
It's the worst fantasy science fiction ever written.— Cool Beans ? ? ? ? (@5klp471) September 13, 2018
They can try, but it's a lot of work for them to walk up the 10 stairs out of their mother's basement— Redmond? (@FireyRedmond) September 12, 2018
From what I gather, this ☝️ pretty much sums it up.— Clayton Campbell (@CheetoPigeonfar) September 12, 2018
Sampling of comments about Clinton in the now-banned QAnon subreddit:— Jim Dalrymple II (@Dalrymple) September 13, 2018
"I want to see her blood pouring down the gutters!”
"I wish some of that blood she drank had some super AIDS in it or something"
"And the buzzards rip her rotting corpse to shreds"https://t.co/pL23sKw48k
and nothing of value was lost— David Merryman (@seafea) September 13, 2018
Last time I visited Great Awakening they were discussing how soon it would before John McCain sittings occurred. They thought he was still alive, never had brain cancer, and his death was a signal he retired from public life— Eric Vondy (@evondy) September 12, 2018
I mean, when thousands of people are convinced that everyone's a pedophile, it's only a matter of time before someone crosses the line.— ishmael n. daro (@iD4RO) September 12, 2018
While some may cite the 1st Amendment—like other purveyors of hate speech and calls for violence that got banned from private platforms—Reddit cited their user terms of service agreement as the reason for the bans.
The subReddits all had multiple clear violations of the sites terms of service.