From our Swindon Correspondent:
Online commerce and payment services have stopped the flow of money to Trump-related accounts in light of Wednesday’s insurrection at the US Capitol. Software maker Shopify removed stores affiliated with President Donald Trump from its platform, and payment processor PayPal shut down an account raising funds for Trump supporters who traveled to Washington, DC.
Shopify said Thursday that the Trump stores, affiliated with the Trump campaign and Trump Organization, violated its policies prohibiting users from promoting or supporting organizations that foment violence.
Firstly, that seems a wholly inaccurate claim. I’ve seen Trump’s speech and he told the people to go home, that there must be peace. And I’m pretty certain that if Trump had actually told people to go forth and smash up the Capitol, loot it, burn it and murder people within that there would be plenty of lawyers demanding his arrest, with a detailed explanation of his crime, rather than a few commentators blaming him for his supporters.
So this isn’t really a breaking of the rules, it’s arbitrarily kicking Trump off because they don’t want to be associated with them.
Which brings me back to what Larry Flynt once said:-
If the first amendment will protect a scumbag like me, it will protect all of you.
Now, this isn’t a 1st Amendment issue. Shopfify are a private company who can have who they want as customers. But the parallel is that both government and companies are in competition for people. An extreme example is all those Jews who left Europe for America, so America gets the atomic bomb and Some Like it Hot.
If you’re building something in software, even with a service platform like Shopify, there’s an investment of time and money. If someone kicks you off arbitrarily, you lose that investment. It’s the problem you get from crying App Store developers, who one day find Apple removing their app, for whatever reason they like, and that’s your income gone. OK, if I build a scented candle shop for someone, Shopify is probably not going to touch it, but who knows? Maybe I should consider my options and find someone who treats providing a service as just that.
And just generally, it’s shitty and I hate it. One of the great things about the web was how open it was to everyone. It was a beacon of free speech and these bastards are ruining it.