Reddit has officially axed one of the main hubs of the QAnon conspiracy theory. Visitors to the r/GreatAwakening subreddit were greeted this afternoon with a ban notice, stating that the forum had been booted “for violations of our Content Policy, specifically inciting violence, harassment, and the dissemination of personal information.”
The QAnon theory, to put it briefly, is the theory that Robert Mueller and Donald Trump are secretly working together to prosecute elite members of a globe-spanning pedophile ring. That information comes from an anonymous 4chan poster named Q, hence the name. It is ridiculous, possibly a prank taken to the extreme, and it has many supporters.
A backup forum, r/The_GreatAwakening, also received the full force of the banhammer. Earlier this week, Reddit also banned a number of subreddits based around Million Dollar Extreme, a “comedy” group popular among white supremacists led by right-wing nuisance Sam Hyde.
In recent days, Q followers had become fixated on the death of John McCain, theorizing that he had been secretly executed after John Kasich said in an interview that he had been “put to death,” a likely verbal slip-up. The QAnon community often seized on obscure “clues” like these, attacking enemies conjured out of thin air. Recent Trump rallies have also featured QAnon supporters showing up in shirts and waving signs.
While QAnon chatter is also present on Facebook and Twitter, Reddit proved to be one of its most prominent hubs in part because of how users could post and congregate anonymously. It’s not clear how the death of the r/GreatAwakening will affect the conspiracy theory’s devotees. And of course, Q is still posting on 4chan and shows no signs of stopping.