Views of extreme misogynist persist online despite ban
An online influencer’s extreme misogynistic views continue to circulate online because his fans keep sharing old content.
Andrew Tate may have been banned from most social media platforms in recent weeks for offenses such as advocating violence against women, but his thoughts are still everywhere.
The former kickboxer’s comments, such as “that female dog is pretty smart for a woman”, found on Spotify, are typical of the 35-year-old.
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As you browse its content, you will find a worldview that claims that women are the property of men, that they shouldn’t drive, and that rape victims should bear some responsibility.
Dr. Samantha Keene is a critical feminist scholar and lecturer in the School of Social and Cultural Studies at Vic Uni.
She says that while the content is repugnant to most, for some it is also a source of resonance.
“We hear anecdotally of teachers hearing students say he’s their role model, they want to be like Andrew Tate.”
And Tate’s online ban hasn’t stopped fans from compiling his most controversial statements and reposting them.
“These images and videos are still circulating in popular culture and they will be continually repurposed and recirculated on social media platforms from now on,” Keene said.
Experts such as the director of technology and partnerships for Netsafe, Sean Lyons, say that it is not enough for the platforms to ban the person, their copied content must also be removed.
“What we need to do is make sure the platforms understand that it’s part of their role and encourage them to keep adding to the tools they see it,” Lyons said.
Emma Llansó is director of the Free Expression Project at the Washington-based Center for Democracy and Technology.
She says this approach carries a risk, however. Content creators who are pushed out of more mainstream platforms could turn to smaller services like Telegram, which is popular with far-right groups because it’s unregulated.
“[They may] potentially become even more extreme in their opinions or be in an echo chamber of people who already agree with them.”