Our easy decision to ban white supremacist Christopher Cantwell
Yesterday, members of the OkCupid community alerted us that white supremacist Christopher Cantwell was on OkCupid. We banned him within 10 minutes. We make a lot of tough decisions every day. This was not one of them.
All people are created equal with inalienable rights. This human truth was self-evident when the US constitution was written. It remains so today. Supremacist ideologies are in direct conflict with these simple, and obvious, truths. They conflict with core human values everyone has the right to.
Like much of the world, we were horrified by the hate we saw in Charlottesville this past weekend. At the same time, we’ve been inspired by the love we’ve seen in its aftermath: love for fellow human beings regardless of race, religion, and orientation. Relationships are the center of the human experience — these connections, in all of their wonderful combinations and varieties, are, quite literally, the foundation of humanity. At OkCupid, we take the truth of everyone’s inalienable rights very seriously. Our belief in them has acted as our inspiration since our founding. We proudly stand rooted in inclusivity.
OkCupid has zero tolerance for racism. The horrors of Nazi’ism were made possible when so many did so little in the face of gross evil. We will do something in the face of evil, even when other leaders do not. We are grateful for the platform we have to reach millions of people and we understand that, as a result, it is our responsibility to take a stand for what’s right.
We’re equally encouraged by the outpouring of support our decision to ban white supremacists and Nazis from OkCupid has received. We’ve been public about banning Cantwell because it’s our responsibility to be clear about the human values we believe in — who we’re for, and the kind of person-to-person interaction we stand for.
As a dating app and site, we talk a lot about how it’s important that we remind you to treat others online the same way you would in real life. Unless, of course, in real life you would treat them with hatred and disdain, based on something as baseless as the color of their skin, how they worship, or whom they love. There is no room for hate in a place where you’re looking for love. So the privilege of being in the OkCupid community does not extend to Nazis and supremacists. Pretty simple.