A moderator of Reddit’s default political discussion board, /r/Politics, has been removed as a mod after voicing his support for Donald J. Trump’s presidential bid.
Jeffrey Minter, known on Reddit under the username /u/Kwiztas, has previously been interviewed by Breitbart in relation to censorship on Reddit and has expressed his support of both Breitbart Tech editor Milo Yiannopoulos and Donald Trump. He has also previously provided technical support work for Yiannopoulos.
This apparently made him quite unpopular amongst the /r/Politics moderators, who voted to have him removed as a mod yesterday.
The official reasons given for voting to remove Minter as a mod were that he hadn’t been actively moderating the subreddit enough to warrant his mod title. It was also claimed that he had “misrepresented the mod team” simply by saying “I try my hardest to make /r/Politics MAGA” and discussing other moderators feelings about his support of Trump, saying “They don’t seem to mind that I support Trump… Now I might be in the minority so my say isn’t always listened to when rules are made.”
Moderators also cited Minter’s brief interview with Breitbart as a reason to have him removed as a moderator. It’s long been suspected that /r/Politics looks upon Breitbart in an unfavourable way but this is the first time a connection with Breitbart has been used as a direct reason for demodding a user. When asked for comment on his sudden removal as a moderator, Minter had this to say, “I feel I was blindsided. This came out of nowhere. No one cared what I said when I supported Bernie. No one had issues with my activity then.”
Minter’s girlfriend, Sarah Williams, contacted Breitbart with research she had compiled on the key players who orchestrated his ban. The leading users that sought his removal were users ScrictScrunity, Lotrouble, Meghanam, and Qu1nlan. All of these users – apart from Meghanam – are strong Clinton supporters.
Considering that Minter was demodded for “misrepresenting the mod team” after simply stating his own political views, Williams decided to investigate the comment history of the users calling for Minter’s demodding to see if there were any patterns in their political views. There was.
Here is an example of StrictScrunity telling conservative users in /r/News to “shut the fuck up” and that they “needed therapy”. He also holds to an elaborate theory of GOP corruption. His posts are far more critical of conservatives and Republicans than anything that Minter has posted about liberals or their candidates.
Qu1nlan is a self described “socialist, SJW cuck” who has regularly “misrepresented” the /r/Politics mod team, as Minter is accused of doing. In a post on the feminist subforum TwoXChromosomes, Qu1nlan said “all the Clinton support here is a nice break from r/politics”.
He is aggressively anti-Trump and has even made long posts in /r/Politics disparaging Trump, such as this one. He has compared the Republican candidate to an “edgy twelve year old”. He posted to the anti-Trump subforum /r/EnoughTrumpSpam specifically speaking “as an /r/Politics mod” – a phrase that Minter was reprimanded for – while discussing “shills” i.e, people paid to post in favour of a particular presidential candidate.
Meghanam is seen here saying that moderators don’t often publicly say which presidential candidate they support, despite then going on to reveal exactly what candidate she supports. Many users have taken issue with both Meghanam and StrictScrunitys moderation, although Meghanam has defended the latter’s record. Complaints against Meghanam can be seen here.
The only difference between Minter’s actions and the other moderators is that he is a quiet supporter of Trump, while the rest support Clinton or third party candidates such as Jill Stein. There have been many claims of politically-motivated censorship in Reddit’s subforums which Breitbart has reported on previously. This is just the latest.
In a comment to Breitbart Tech, /r/politics moderator Qu1nlan denied allegations of political censorship. “All decisions we make, including adding and removing moderators, have nothing to do with any moderator’s political beliefs.”
Lucas Nolan is a conservative who regularly contributes articles on censorship and free speech to Breitbart. Follow him on Twitter@LucasNolan_ or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org