In recent weeks, it has been hard to avoid the misogynist content creator Andrew Tate.
Whether it was his content plastered across social media, or the raft of newspaper articles, he appeared to be everywhere. Much of the media coverage has rightly focused on his violent misogyny but we knew there was more to the story.
HOPE not hate has been monitoring Tate for years because of his close links to the far right, especially Stephen Lennon (AKA Tommy Robinson). After months of researching, we had put together a dossier showing his long history of racist statements, homophobia and links to the far right.
Read our briefing on violent misogynist Andrew Tate.
We don’t call for the deplatforming of figures lightly. We understand that social media is an important space for debate and disagreement. We only call for it when we think a user, such as Andrew Tate, poses a serious danger. Our major concern is that his brand of extreme and sometimes violent misogyny is reaching a young male audience, and that he could serve as a gateway to wider far-right politics.
Last week we launched a major campaign to reduce his harm online, calling on major social media platforms to remove Andrew Tate and his harmful content from their platforms.
Thanks to our supporters, it has proved to be one of our most immediately successful campaigns in years. In a matter of days YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter have all acted to remove accounts run by Andrew Tate!
Our campaign has received hundreds of items of media coverage from all over the world, with everyone from the BBC to The Washington Post covering it. Our dossier was even translated into German by Bell Tower News.
We were not alone in calling speaking out against the dangers of Andrew Tate and wider societal misogyny, with organisations including Rape Crisis England and Wales, White Ribbon, Glitch and Women’s Aid all bringing vital attention to this issue.
This campaign has been hugely successful so far, but it’s not over yet. There is still a huge amount of harmful Tate content on social media, and the platforms need to do more. It is also true that Tate is a symptom of wider societal misogyny, and we all have to do more to combat its corrosive impact on society and the very real dangers it poses to women.
However, here’s the progress of our campaign so far:
We contacted Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter with a new dossier of research on Andrew Tate, explaining why we felt he was dangerous enough to be deplatformed. We also began having meetings with the platforms, to push them to act directly.
Having engaged directly with social media platforms we launched a public campaign, including a petition, calling on platforms to act. Thousands of people signed it in a matter of hours.
Meta (Facebook and Instagram) let us know that they were already looking into Tate, investigating whether he reached their threshold for removal. Our dossier was sent to the decision makers and contributed to their subsequent decision to ban him from their platforms. This resulted in Tate losing his Instagram, which had 4.7M followers.
We also contacted Twitter with evidence that despite them having banned his account years before, he was operating a new account with nearly 100k followers. They instantly removed the account.
We refocused our campaign on TikTok as this is the platform on which we believe Tate is having the most negative impact, especially on young men.
Thousands more signed our petition and shared it across all social media platforms.
Andrew Tate decided to shut down the affiliated marketing programme of his Hustler University, saying it has “no future”.
While TikTok had been removing specific content that broke their terms of service, the platform publicly stated that they had also removed an account that belonged to Tate. They also said they were using technology to remove duplicated clips of Tate content and were reviewing new content as it was shared.
While a welcome step in the right direction, our concern remains that TikTok is enabling Tate’s harmful content to be shared widely amongst young men and boys. That’s why we are still calling on TikTok to designate Andrew Tate as a harmful individual and remove all content related to him.
On the same day we also spoke directly with YouTube and called for them to take swift action against Tate. We explained that most other major platforms had already acted to remove Tate’s own accounts and began publicly calling for them to act.
Later that evening YouTube confirmed to us that they have terminated channels associated with Tate for circumventing their Terms of Service and that he is unable to use, own or create any other YouTube channels.
His channel, “TateSpeech”, had millions of views and 768K subscribers. This channel was a major source of harmful content that was being clipped-up by his supporters and shared on other social media platforms, so its removal was a huge victory.
Huge amounts of Tate content remains on YouTube, however, and we continue to urge them to go further.
Andrew Tate appears to have removed his Twitch channel himself.
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