Squarespace has become the latest web service to drop members of the white supremacist movement in the wake of violence in Charlottesville, including Richard Spencer, president of the white nationalist think tank the National Policy Institute.
“In light of recent events, we have made the decision to remove a group of sites from our platform,” a representative from Squarespace said in an email. “We have given the site owners 48 hours’ notice.”
Squarespace’s action follows calls for the service, a domain registrar and hosting service, to stop providing a platform for Spencer’s group and other white supremacist organizations. One petition on Change.org directed at Squarespace has more than 36,000 signatures.
“Squarespace, a popular web hosting service for businesses and creative professionals, is hosting white supremacist/neo-nazi groups: Identity Evropa, Radix Journal, and Richard Spencer's National Policy Institute,” the petition says. “These groups helped to organize the deadly nazi rallies in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 11th-12th. Squarespace has been informed of this repeatedly by email, but has refused to take the websites down.” Vocativ also published a story about white supremacists being hosted on Squarespace back in April. It appears the company has now changed its mind.
The petition and Vocativ story both noted that Squarespace's Acceptable Use Policy forbids advocating “bigotry or hatred against any person or group based on their race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual preference, age or disability.”
The move follows decisions by GoDaddy and Google to stop providing domain registration for the white supremacist site The Daily Stormer. That site moved its domain registration to a Russian service, but was quickly dropped there too after a Russian government request.
Squarespace declined to provide further comment.
Update: This story has been updated to reflect the fact that The Daily Stormer’s Russian domain registration was revoked.