BitChute

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BitChute
A tilted black square with white text reading "BIT", followed by red text reading "CHUTE"
Type of site
Online video platform
Available inEnglish
HeadquartersNewbury, Berkshire, England, United Kingdom
Created byRay Vahey
Websitebitchute.com
Alexa rankIncrease 3,654 (September 2, 2019)[1]
RegistrationOptional
LaunchedJanuary 2017; 2 years ago (2017-01)
Current statusActive

BitChute is a video hosting service that uses peer-to-peer WebTorrent technology.[2] It was founded as a way to avoid content rules that are enforced on platforms like YouTube,[2] and some creators who have been banned or had their channels "demonetized" (barred from receiving advertising revenue) on YouTube have migrated to BitChute.[3] The platform has been accused of accommodating far-right individuals and conspiracy theorists,[8] with the Southern Poverty Law Center claiming the site hosts "hate-fueled material".[9]

History[edit]

The company was launched by Ray Vahey in January 2017.[4] It is based on the peer-to-peer WebTorrent system, a JavaScript torrenting program that can run in a web browser. Users who watch a video also seed it.[3] BitChute does not rely on advertising, and users can send payments to video creators directly.[10]

In November 2018 BitChute was banned from PayPal.[11][12] Alex Jones, the Proud Boys, Tommy Robinson, and several anti-fascists were also banned at the same time.[11]

In January 2019, BitChute announced in a post on Gab that they would move their domains over to Epik, a small domain registrar known for accepting the registration of websites that host far-right content.[9][13]

Video classification[edit]

The site allows a video classification tag of not safe for work (NSFW) where content would generally be considered inappropriate for a family or workplace setting; and a not safe for life (NSFL) setting for extreme or strongly questionable content that may cause psychological trauma if viewed.[14][15]

Content[edit]

BitChute has been accused of accommodating far-right groups and individuals,[8] with the Southern Poverty Law Center claiming it hosts "hate-fueled material".[9] There has been conflict between YouTube and right-wing video creators over the inclusion of hate speech and misinformation in videos, and YouTube responded in some cases by banning creators, blocking their videos, or through channel "demonetization".[3] Vahey has described BitChute as an alternative option to avoid the "bannings, demonetization, and tweaking algorithms to send certain content into obscurity" he views as "increased levels of censorship" by established services like YouTube.[2] Some users and groups who have been banned from YouTube have migrated to BitChute, including Alex Jones' far-right conspiracy theory channel InfoWars.[4] Other prominent far-right and alt-right video creators who are not banned from YouTube cross-post their videos to BitChute, including Lauren Southern, Stefan Molyneux, Millennial Woes, and Paul Joseph Watson.[3][5]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Bitchute.com Traffic, Demographics and Competitors - Alexa". Alexa Internet. Archived from the original on September 2, 2019.CS1 maint: unfit url (link)
  2. ^ a b c Maxwell, Andy (January 29, 2017). "BitChute is a BitTorrent-Powered YouTube Alternative". TorrentFreak. Archived from the original on December 9, 2017. Retrieved December 10, 2017.
  3. ^ a b c d e Daro, Ishmael N.; Lytvynenko, Jane (April 18, 2018). "Right-Wing YouTubers Think It's Only A Matter Of Time Before They Get Kicked Off The Site". BuzzFeed News. Archived from the original on July 5, 2018. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  4. ^ a b c Schroeder, Audra (November 2, 2018). "Far-right conspiracy vloggers have a new home". The Daily Dot. Archived from the original on May 4, 2019. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  5. ^ a b Tani, Maxwell (September 22, 2017). "'There's no one for right-wingers to pick a fight with': The far right is struggling to sustain interest in its social media platforms". Business Insider. Archived from the original on December 8, 2017. Retrieved December 10, 2017.
  6. ^ Robertson, Adi (October 9, 2017). "Two months ago, the internet tried to banish Nazis. No one knows if it worked". The Verge. Archived from the original on April 4, 2018. Retrieved May 24, 2019. Alt-tech services include alternatives to Reddit (Voat), Patreon (Hatreon), Twitter (Gab), GoFundMe (GoyFundMe), and YouTube (BitChute)
  7. ^ Livni, Ephrat (May 12, 2019). "Twitter, Facebook, and Insta bans send the alt-right to Gab and Telegram". Quartz. Archived from the original on May 24, 2019. Retrieved May 24, 2019. The far right have plenty of places to go when they are no longer welcome on mainstream platforms—like Parler, Minds, MeWe, and BitChute, among others.
  8. ^ a b [3][4][5][6][7]
  9. ^ a b c Hayden, Michael Edison (January 11, 2019). "A Problem of Epik Proportions". Southern Poverty Law Center. Archived from the original on January 12, 2019. Retrieved January 12, 2019.
  10. ^ Alexander, Julia (March 7, 2018). "Controversial YouTubers head to alternative platforms in wake of 'purge'". Polygon. Archived from the original on May 4, 2019. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  11. ^ a b Blake, Andrew (November 14, 2018). "BitChute, YouTube alternative, cries foul over apparent punt from PayPal". The Washington Times. Archived from the original on November 27, 2018. Retrieved November 28, 2018.
  12. ^ Newton, Casey (November 15, 2018). "Facebook has a growing morale problem". The Verge. Archived from the original on May 4, 2019. Retrieved May 4, 2019. ... the front page was littered with videos about Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and Pizzagate. It’s unclear what the final straw was.
  13. ^ Martineau, Paris (November 6, 2018). "How Right-Wing Social Media Site Gab Got Back Online". Wired. ISSN 1059-1028. Archived from the original on May 2, 2019. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  14. ^ Farmer, Eric (June 28, 2019). "What Is BitCHUTE?". TurboFuture. Archived from the original on September 17, 2019. Retrieved September 17, 2019.
  15. ^ "Reddit Basics". reddit.zendesk.com. Retrieved September 17, 2019.

External links[edit]