Silicon Valley’s coordinated purge of all things Infowars from social media has had an unexpected result; website traffic to Infowars.com has soared in the past week, according to Amazon’s website ranking service Alexa.
Infowars was recently banned by YouTube, Facebook, iTunes, Google Podcast, Spotify, iHeartRadio, MailChimp, Disqus, LinkedIn, Flickr, Pinterest and several others – leading many to wonder exactly how and why this was seemingly coordinated mass takedown took place between platforms.
Facebook, Apple, YouTube/Google, Spotify are ostensibly 4 diverse independent actors acting together.
Coordinated corporate action like this is a serious problem that has nothing whatsoever to do w/ the various peculiarities of the target here.
What are we seeing? What is this? https://t.co/FEHWB6cwum
— Eric Weinstein (@EricRWeinstein) August 6, 2018
Jones’ popular supplements were even stripped of their “Amazon’s Choice” tags on the website:
That said, Google and Apple are still allowing people to access Infowars content via apps, which have seen their downloads spike as well.
Consumers still can access InfoWars through the same tech companies that just banned it. Google still offers the Infowars app for Android users, and Apple customers can download it through the App Store.
As of Friday, the show’s phone app remained near the top of the charts in both the Apple App and Google Play stores. Infowars Official, an app that lets viewers stream Jones’ shows and read news of the day, was ranked fourth among trending apps in the Google Play store Friday. In the news category on Apple’s App Store, Infowars earned the fourth slot under the top free apps, behind Twitter and News Break, a local and breaking news service, revealing a sudden boost of user downloads. –American Statesman
What’s more, Jones says that 5.6 million people subscribed to the Infowars newsletter within 48 hours of his YouTube ban, according to the Daily Mail.
What’s more he claims the publicity surrounding the action taken by the likes of YouTube, Facebook and Apple – who have blocked his content and removed his channels – has gained him millions of subscribers – not lost him followers.
Jones claims 5.6million people have subscribed to the Infowars newsletter and free podcast in the past 48 hours.
Branding what’s happened ‘bull***t’, the 44-year-old Texan said: ‘Why not say I’m flying a Nazi flying carpet. I sit up in the morning and I s**t Hitler out of my a**. It’s bull***t. –Daily Mail
“Because I play devil’s advocate, because I play both sides, they’ve taken me out of context, they are using me as a test case to try to bring an EU style web censorship,” Jones said. “They’ve got mainline Democratic senators saying they ought to restrict Fox News, Tucker Carlson, Matt Drudge, the President himself. They are misrepresenting what I’ve said and done and are using that to set a precedent for internet wide de-platforming, censorship beyond what Russia does, what China does, ahead of the midterms (election). The whole thing is fake.”
Looking at Infowars’ stats, a little over 10% of their pre-ban traffic in July came from social media, with Facebook about half of that. Which likely means that Jones will survive as most of his traffic is direct, as users access the site via typing it into the URL bar or click on a bookmark, instead of coming through search engines.
In terms of dollars and cents, the website Social Blade estimates that over the last 30 days, the Infowars YouTube channel received a little over 17 million views. With average YouTube ad revenue is around $2 per 1,000 clicks (CPM), and InfoWars undoubtedly demonetized for much of that, YouTube’s decision to ban Jones and his channels cost the Infowars enterprise up to $400,000.
Meanwhile, a flood of new traffic has been driven to Infowars.com, which is probably paying a much higher CPM. It’s entirely possible that if the newfound site visitors stick around, Jones would end up more profitable than before he was blacklisted.