Hosting provider hosteurope.de has surprisingly terminated its contract with Swiss Reddit clone Voat, and all of the social news site's servers were shut down without any warning, according to Atko, Voat's Chief Technology Officer. The site has remained online thanks to a backup created on a cloud-based hosting platform hours before the shutdown of servers occurred.
Interestingly, Germany-based hosteurope.de vaguely explained to Atko the reason for the termination of the contract, only stating that they have discovered "politically incorrect" content that is unacceptable for them.
The hosting company also mentioned that what they did was necessary because they no longer trusted Voat as its customer. It should be noted that the host shut the site down in a very subjective matter and not because the site has violated any laws. Atko mentioned on a thread that the site had survived cyberattacks and popularity surge due to donations, which helped in purchasing more server capacity to house the former Reddit users.
"We are living in a weird world. We will have to evaluate carefully our long-term options of providing a platform of free speech if we are to stay online. Your donations are what keep us afloat," Atko added.
Reddit clone site Voat.co has been in the limelight recently and its membership expanded after several groups of Reddit users reportedly left their website in protest to Reddit's biased censorship of five subreddits that have encouraged harassing behavior.
The banned subreddits for harassment posts include the subreddit r/shitniggerssay for its racist remarks, subreddit r/neofag for its continued mocking of a community in a specific gaming forum, subreddit r/transfags who were against trans people, and the subreddits accused of harassing overweight individuals, r/hamplanethatred and r/fatpeoplehate.
Reddit explained that they banned the subforums not for their problematic ideas but for the subreddits' continuing harassment of others, which is why subreddit r/coontownn is still allowed on the site even with a post of "the only good nigger is a dead one" on the day of the Charlestown gunfire.
However, switching users to newfound haven Voat were not convinced and argued that Reddit's policy has not been applied consistently as they knew other subreddits that exhibit same behavior but were not axed. They also questioned the "political leanings" of Reddit's management, particularly chief executive Ellen Pao.
The former Reddit users will most likely continue to stay as long as Voat remains committed to being a "censorship-free community platform."