Gab, a social network popular among alt-right activists and white nationalists, went back online Sunday after having gone dark following the mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue, which killed 11 people.
The platform, a self-labeled champion of free speech, was dropped by domain provider GoDaddy.com last week. It announced its return Sunday evening with a new domain registrar, Epik.com.
“You failed. We are back online. We grow stronger by the hour. Free speech lives at Gab.com,” the company tweeted. “This is only the beginning. May God have mercy on you for what you people have done this past week.”
A flurry of anti-Semitic messages appeared within minutes of the site being back online.
White supremacist Christopher Cantwell was one of the first to post. “Hey Jews! We’re back on Gab now,” he wrote. “Thanks for the press. Pretty soon the average citizen is going to figure out that we wouldn’t be having these problems in your absence, and we genuinely appreciate your help in stepping up the timeline on that.”
Pittsburgh synagogue shooting suspect Robert Bowers was found to have used the site as a forum to channel his anti-Semitism, labelling Jews an “infestation” and “the children of Satan.”
Epik CEO Rob Monster told The Seattle Times that he has faith in Gab’s ability to curate content.
“I do believe the guys that are on the site are vigilant,” Monster said.
Gab’s CEO Andrew Torba maintains that the site has a “zero tolerance policy” for violence and terrorism. Yet Torba has a history of either ignoring racist commentary on his platform or actively encouraging it, not to mention penning his own anti-Semitic rants.