Platformer Will Leave If Substack Doesn’t ‘Reverse Course and Remove All Pro-Nazi Material’

Casey Newton, the writer behind the popular tech newsletter Platformer, has threatened to leave Substack following its CEO’s defense of hosting and handling payments for content associated with “Nazis.” 

“Rolling out a welcome mat for Nazis is, to put it mildly, inconsistent with our values here at Platformer,” he wrote on Wednesday. “We have shared this in private discussions with Substack and are scheduled to meet with the company later this week to advocate for change.”

Via Threads

Newton hopes Substack will reverse its stance and remove pro-Nazi material following its existing anti-hate policies. If not, he plans to remove Platformer from the platform, echoing a growing sentiment among other newsletter creators who have already switched to alternative services. 

An exodus of authors like Newton poses a serious threat to the newsletter service. Substack takes 10% of the subscription fees on its platform. Losing Platformer, which charges about $10 per month for its paid subscription, already represents a significant loss in its revenue.

In December, over 200 Substack authors demanded to know why the newsletter hosting site’s founders are continuing to platform and monetize Nazis following a report from The Atlantic, which revealed that “Substack has not only been hosting writers who post overtly Nazi rhetoric on the platform; it profits from many of them.”

Substack co-founder Hamish McKenzie published a response to the letter, basically saying that they’re standing by their hands-off approach to content moderation. 

“We believe that supporting individual rights and civil liberties while subjecting ideas to open discourse is the best way to strip bad ideas of their power. We are committed to upholding and protecting freedom of expression, even when it hurts,” McKenzie said.

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