Insurrectionists And White Nationalists Gather On Chinese-Owned Trovo Site
Reprinted with permission from Media Matters
Multiple far-right and white nationalist figures -- including some involved with the January 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol -- have shifted to the gaming-streaming platform Trovo, including using it to monetize their content. Some have used the platform to specifically defend the insurrection; one such person appears to be part of a special Trovo program that can help them raise additional money. Trovo's policies seemingly prohibit white nationalist content and content not related to video games.
Following the insurrection, streaming platform DLive, known for hosting many far-right figures -- some of whom used the platform to livestream the riot -- announced that it would ban several of those accounts. It also announced it would demonetize content that is "deemed to only be appropriate for mature audiences," which it says covers "virtually all non-gaming content."
Since then, multiple far-right figures have started migrating to Trovo, a streaming platform from Tencent still in beta testing. (Tencent is China's largest company and the operator of WeChat.) Trovo's terms of service prohibit content that is "overly violent or promotes or depicts events involving self-harm, harm to another person or harm to animals" and content that is "threatening, abusive, libelous, slanderous, fraudulent, defamatory, deceptive, or otherwise offensive or objectionable." The platform's content guidelines also allow only content that is "relevant to video games and pop culture," and they prohibit "overtly political or religious content that imposes upon others."
Despite those rules, multiple far-right figures have used the platform, often uploading content that is not related to those specifically allowed topics. They've also sometimes used the platform to monetize their content indirectly -- or possibly directly, as the platform provides an avenue for creators to monetize via its digital currencies. Some of these figures have been directly tied to the insurrection.
Vincent James Foxx, a white nationalist who attended the January 6 rally and who is banned from YouTube and DLive, joined Trovo in January. From the platform, James has earned "subs" and "spells," part of the platform's digital currencies which potentially can be converted into actual money. His channel also promotes a link to his Entropy page, a platform from which people can pay creators. On Trovo, James has criticized former President Donald Trump for not "back[ing] his supporters during the Capitol siege" and for not pardoning them after.Video fileVideo Player00:0001:23SHARE
MurderTheMedia, a channel affiliated with the far-right gang Proud Boys and which was banned by DLive following the insurrection, joined Trovo in January. Two members of the channel, Nicholas DeCarlo (also known as "Dick NeCarlo") and Nick Ochs (the head of the Proud Boys' Hawaii chapter), were charged by authorities for being part of the insurrection and were photographed giving thumbs up next to the scrawled words "Murder the Media" at the Capitol during the siege. One of them was also wearing a shirt with the "Murder The Media" logo at the time. On Trovo, MurderTheMedia has earned "spells" that can potentially be converted into actual money. The account has also aired a stream featuring NeCarlo trying to raise funds for his legal case and saying he would "fight" authorities and "punch a motherfucker in the face in the courtroom."Video fileVideo Player00:0005:06SHARE
Ali Alexander is a far-right figure who was a key organizer of the "Stop the Steal" efforts that culminated in the January 6 rally leading to the insurrection. Alexander, who has since been banned from multiple platforms, joined Trovo in February. Since then, he has used the platform to call for the free press "to be abolished" and has threatened to meet authorities on the "battlefield" if they attempt to arrest him.Video fileVideo Player00:0002:15SHARE
Some white nationalist "Groypers" who attended the insurrection have joined Trovo as well.
- Jaden McNeil, a white nationalist who attended the insurrection, appears to have joined Trovo in January. On the platform, he has earned "spells" and "subs" that can potentially be converted into actual money, and his channel promotes a link to his pages on Entropy and StreamElements, another platform that lets users pay streamers.
- Nick Fuentes, the leader of the "Groypers" who attended the insurrection as well as other "Stop the Steal" demonstrations, appears to have joined Trovo at around the same time as McNeil and has joined McNeil's streams. He has used his channel to promote his Entropy page and sell merchandise.
Other white nationalist and far-right figures have also made a home on Trovo since the insurrection.
- Devon Stack is a conspiracy theorist who has authored a book titled The Day of the Rope, a reference to a white supremacist concept. Stack joined Trovo in January. He has earned "subs" and "spells," his account links to multiple other fundraising platforms, and he appears to be part of the Trovo 500, a "Creator Partnership Program" in which an exclusive group of streamers with "high-quality broadcasts" can earn additional money. Stack has called the insurrectionists "freedom fighters" on Trovo.
- Jake Lloyd, a former Infowars contributor and a "Groyper," joined Trovo in January. His channel also has "spells" and links to other platforms from which he can monetize. He has used the platform to call former President Barack Obama "anti-white" and "anti-American" and to falsely call him a Muslim.
- Patrick Casey, the former leader of the white nationalist American Identity Movement and a former "Groyper," joined Trovo in January. He has since earned "subs" and uses the channel to promote his Entropy page.
- Ethan Ralph, a podcaster known for associating with white nationalists and who was banned from YouTube, joined Trovo in January after a supposedly temporary DLive ban. He has earned "spells" and links to multiple other platforms he seemingly uses to raise money. Ralph has hosted Fuentes on his Trovo channel and has defended those not accepting what he described as the "official narrative" around the Holocaust.
- White Rabbit Radio, a white nationalist podcast, joined Trovo in January. The channel has earned "spells" and links to multiple other fundraising platforms. It has featured defenses of the insurrectionists, claiming they had "good intentions" and "meant well" and had the "right energy." The podcast on Trovo also urged viewers not to get a coronavirus vaccine "if you don't [have to]." Video fileVideo Player00:0000:00SHARECitation
- Red Ice TV, a white nationalist channel previously banned from YouTube, apparently joined Trovo in January, where it has earned "spells." On Trovo, the hosts have ranted about those harmed by an "anti-white cult" and "enforced multiculturalism and anti-whiteness" while featuring an article from a white nationalist outlet.
- Terpsichore Maras-Lindeman, a podcaster known as "Tore," was cited by conspiracy theorist attorney Sidney Powell in a case before the Supreme Court to push false claims of voter fraud. She is a supporter of the QAnon conspiracy theory, whose supporters helped instigate the insurrection. She joined Trovo in February and her channel has earned "subs."
- Martin Sellner, the Austrian head of Europe's far-right Generation Identity movement, joined Trovo in January. He has praised the "positive potential" of the insurrection and has been investigated in connection with the Christchurch, New Zealand, mass shooter. His channel has earned "subs," and it links to other platforms to raise money.
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