We were alerted that white supremacist Chris Cantwell was on OkCupid. Within 10 minutes we banned him for life.
— OkCupid (@okcupid) August 17, 2017
After a Vice documentary about last weekend’s Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville featured white supremacist Chris Cantwell, he was banned from Facebook. And on Thursday, he was kicked off OkCupid as well.
The online dating site announced the decision via Twitter and followed up by tweeting that “there is no room for hate in a place where you’re looking for love.” The site also asked users to report anyone who appears to be involved in a hate group.
Chief executive Elie Seidman gave a statement to Gizmodo saying, “OkCupid has zero tolerance for racism. We make a lot of [decisions] every day that are tough. Banning Christopher Cantwell was not one of them.”
In the Vice documentary, Cantwell advocates for the alt-right’s use of violence — during Saturday’s protest and beyond — to create a white “ethno-state.” And he describes how his views on race affect his beliefs on whom should date or marry whom. “I’m here to spread ideas, talk, in the hopes that somebody more capable will come along … somebody like Donald Trump who does not give his daughter to a Jew,” Cantwell says. He says his ideal leader would be someone “a lot more racist than Donald Trump. … I don’t think you could feel about race [as] I do and watch that Kushner b‑‑‑‑‑d walk around with that beautiful girl.”
Whether it’s white supremacists or sexually explicit messages, online dating sites and apps are constantly urging users to be kind to one another. Just last week, OkCupid asked all members to sign a pledge that they won’t send “any harassing or unwanted, sexually explicit messages.” (The Washington Post put in a request for further comment from OkCupid.)
In its terms of service, Tinder encourages users to be respectful to one another and not “post any content that is hate speech, threatening, sexually explicit or pornographic; incites violence; or contains nudity or graphic or gratuitous violence.” However, Tinder makes clear that it’s not responsible “for the conduct of any user on or off the service.” Bumble’s terms are similar, stating that the app can restrict any content that “is abusive, insulting or threatening, or which promotes or encourages racism, sexism, hatred or bigotry.”
Perhaps Cantwell would have more luck on White People Meet, a dating site that got a lot of criticism for being bigoted when it launched in 2016. But even that site has terms of service that specifically prohibit messages that “promote racism, bigotry, [or] hatred.”