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Homepage of Infowars.com
Type of site
News and opinion
|Owner||Alex Jones (via Free Speech Systems LLC)|
|Alexa rank||3,579 (February 2018)|
|Launched||March 6, 1999|
Talk shows and other content are created primarily in studios at an undisclosed location in an industrial area outside Austin, Texas. The InfoWars website receives approximately 10 million monthly visits, making it more visited than some mainstream news websites such as The Economist and Newsweek.
The site has regularly published fake stories which have been linked to harassment of victims.[a] In February 2018, Alex Jones, the publisher, director and owner of InfoWars, was accused of discrimination and sexually harassing employees. InfoWars, and in particular Jones, advocate numerous conspiracy theories particularly around purported domestic false flag operations by the U.S. Government (which they allege include the 9/11 attacks and Sandy Hook shootings). InfoWars has issued retractions various times as a result of legal challenges.
- 1 History
- 2 Structure
- 3 Controversies
- 4 Hosts
- 5 Notable guests
- 6 Notes
- 7 References
- 8 External links
InfoWars was created in 1999 by American conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, who remains its controlling influence. InfoWars features The Alex Jones Show on their broadcasts and was established as a public-access television program aired in Austin, Texas in 1999.
In 2016, Paul Joseph Watson was hired as editor-at-large. In February 2017, political commentator Dr Jerome Corsi was hired as Washington bureau chief, after InfoWars was granted White House press credentials. The Guardian has accused Corsi, who is Catholic, "of being anti-Islamic, anti-Catholic, anti-Semitic and homophobic, and of exploiting racial prejudices in an attempt to 'scare white America'".
In May 2017, Mike Cernovich joined the InfoWars team as a scheduled guest host for The Alex Jones Show, with CNN reporting the "elevation to InfoWars host represents the meteoric rise in his profile".
In June 2017, it was announced Roger Stone, a former campaign advisor for Donald Trump, would be hosting his own InfoWars show "five nights a week", with an extra studio being built to accommodate his show.
In March 2018, some of the biggest brands in the U.S. suspended their ads from InfoWars' YouTube channels, after CNN contacted them.
The following table lists InfoWars main staff members.
|Alex Jones||Publisher & Director|
|Paul Joseph Watson||Editor & Staff Writer|
|Steve Watson, Adan Salazar, Kit Daniels, Mikael Thalen, Jamie White||Associate Editor & Staff Writer|
|Anthony Gucciardi||Contributing Writer|
|Rob Dew||Nightly News Director|
|David Knight, Jakari Jackson, Lee Ann McAdoo, Joe Biggs, Millie Weaver, Owen Shroyer||Reporter|
|Jon Bowne, Clifford Cunningham, Dan Lyman||Correspondent|
|Jerome Corsi||Author & Correspondent|
|Jon Rappoport, Shepard Ambellas||Contributor|
Sexual harassment and antisemitism claims
Two former employees filed complaints against Jones.
Promotion of conspiracy theories
InfoWars advocates New World Order conspiracy theories, 9/11 conspiracy theories, chemtrails, conspiracy theories involving Bill Gates, supposed covert government weather control programs, claims of rampant domestic false flag operations by the US Government (including 9/11) and the unsupported claim that millions voted illegally in the 2016 US presidential election. Jones frequently uses InfoWars to assert that new high-profile mass shootings are conspiracies or "false flag" operations, claims which are often then spread. This has been characterised as Second Amendment "fan fiction".
Infowars has published and promoted fake news, and Jones has been accused of knowingly misleading people to make money. As part of the FBI's probe into Russian interference in the 2016 United States elections, Infowars was investigated to see if it was complicit in the disseminating of fake news stories put out by Russian bots.
Claims of false flag school shootings
InfoWars has regularly accused mass shootings of being false flags and survivors of them as crisis actors by the United States government. InfoWars host Alex Jones has promoted the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting conspiracy theories. Jones was widely criticized for claiming that the Sandy Hook massacre was "completely fake" and "manufactured".
Harassment by InfoWars viewership
InfoWars promoted fabricated Pizzagate claims. The fake claims led to harassment of the owner and employees of Comet Ping Pong, a Washington, D.C. pizzeria targeted by the conspiracy theories, including threatening phone calls, online harassment, and death threats. The owner sent a letter to Jones in February 2017 demanding a retraction or apology. (Such a letter is required before a party may seek punitive damages in an action for libel under Texas law).
After receiving the letter, Jones issued an apology in March 2017. Alex Jones said that "I want our viewers and listeners to know that we regret any negative impact our commentaries may have had on Mr. Alefantis, Comet Ping Pong, or its employees. We apologize to the extent our commentaries could be construed as negative statements about Mr. Alefantis or Comet Ping Pong, and we hope that anyone else involved in commenting on Pizzagate will do the same thing." InfoWars also issued a correction on its website.
InfoWars reporter Owen Shroyer also targeted East Side Pies, a group of pizza restaurants in Austin, Texas, with similar fake "Pizzagate" claims. Following the claims, the pizza business was targeted by phone threats, vandalism, and harassment, which the co-owners called "alarming, disappointing, disconcerting and scary."
In 2017, Infowars (among other right-wing sites) published a fake story about U.S. yogurt manufacturer Chobani, with headlines including "Idaho yogurt maker caught importing migrant rapists" and "Allegations that Chobani’s practice of hiring refugees brought crime and tuberculosis to Twin Falls." Chobani ultimately filed a federal lawsuit against Jones, which led to a settlement on confidential terms in May 2017. Jones offered an apology and retraction, admitting that he has made "certain statements" on InfoWars "that I now understand to be wrong."
From May 2014 to November 2017, InfoWars republished articles from multiple sources without permission, most frequently from RT with over 1000 articles copied.
Alex Jones is the main host, and operator of InfoWars. Apart from Alex Jones himself, the show has become a platform for various hosts.
In July 2016, Shroyer stopped CNN presenter Van Jones in the streets of Cleveland and attempted to engage him in an unscheduled on-camera debate. Jones participated willingly, and put forward well-constructed arguments, leading Shroyer to admit his opinion of Jones had changed favorably following the encounter.
On September 2, 2017, while covering a pro-immigrant rally that took place in Austin, Texas, for InfoWars, Shroyer repeatedly asked provocative questions to protesters. He started to question a young teenager, Olivia Williams, of her views. She, in return, called him a "fucking idiot", leading to international coverage of the incident.
In November 2017, Shroyer was quoted as saying that Trump supporters outnumbered anti-Trump protesters at an antifa rally held in Austin on November 4, 2017. Infowars headlines had previously supported a conspiracy theory that the event would be the beginning of a planned "insurgency" against Trump, although Shroyer had said he did not believe antifa was a real threat.
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