OAN Declaring Independence: Preps to #MakeTheSwitch to Rumble Platform

December 4th, 2020 1:22 PM

One America News Network (OAN) proclaimed that it will switch to Rumble, a free speech alternative to YouTube. 

OAN announced it has “decided to #MakeTheSwitch to #Rumble, where we can freely report the news without restrictions or censorship,” in a Dec. 3 tweet. Followers were then encouraged to “Subscribe to our channel at http://rumble.com/OANN or download the Rumble app!” This game-changing shift happened shortly after YouTube barred OAN from releasing new videos for an entire week in late November and faced other penalties.

“In making the move to Rumble, OANN has joined a growing movement of conservatives who are switching to the YouTube alternative that bills itself as ‘free-speech friendly,’” the Washington Examiner summarized Dec. 4. Fortune Magazine acknowledged that the politicization of Rumble’s content has led to its meteoric rise in newfound popularity. “Three months ago, YouTube copycat Rumble was filled with home recordings of people’s family, friends, and pets. But after Republican Rep. Devin Nunes of California joined the service in August, other conservatives followed, helping add tens of thousands of new subscribers,” Fortune explained.

The Examiner noted the involvement of popular conservative commentator Dan Bongino, who “co-owns Rumble and says it is a place where ‘conservative views won’t be discriminated against.’” Bongino also co-owns Parler, a platform celebrated as a free-speech alternative to Twitter. 

OAN has been reportedly penalized by YouTube both for violating YouTube’s COVID-19 misinformation policy and for expressing concern about alleged presidential election problems.

Axios illustrated that the suspension is one of many ways in which YouTube has actively undermined OAN as a news organization:

  • “OANN is also suspended from the YouTube Partner Program, which means if it wants to monetize its videos again, it will have to re-apply.
  • “YouTube has a three-strikes policy before an account is terminated. This is OANN's first strike, but it has violated the platform's COVID-19 misinformation policy before, meaning it gets no more warnings if it breaks the rules again — just additional strikes.
  • “YouTube says it does not consider OANN an authoritative news source.”

This censorship of OAN came as Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) led a group of liberal Senate colleagues on Nov. 24 urging YouTube to remove so-called “misinformation.” In an open letter he and his allies, Sens. Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Gary Peters (D-MI) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) demanded swift action to crush conservative dissent:

“Moreover, because the current president has not committed to a peaceful transition of power, misinformation and manipulated media content on your platform may fuel civil unrest.”

Conservatives are under attack. Contact Google at 1-650-253-0000 and demand that the platform provide transparency: Companies need to design open systems so that they can be held accountable, while giving weight to privacy concerns. If you have been censored, contact us at the Media Research Center contact form, and help us hold Big Tech accountable.