Gab says it was kicked off Coinbase

Coinbase, a crypto platform, allegedly closed the accounts of the social network and Andrew Torba, its founder.

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Erin Carson
2 min read

Coinbase has apparently closed accounts for Gab and its founder.

Minchen Liang / EyeEm /Getty

Coinbase, a big digital currency exchange, closed an account held by Gab, a free-wheeling Twitter lookalike that's become a favorite social media platform for the far right.

On Saturday, Gab tweeted out a screenshot of a notice it received from Coinbase saying that its account was going to be closed. An account held by Andrew Torba, Gab's CEO and founder, was also shuttered, Gab said.

"As predicted: the on ramps and off ramps (exchanges) are going to start censoring not only companies, but also individuals," the tweet read, in part. 

A Coinbase representative said the company doesn't comment on individual accounts.

This isn't the first time Gab has tweeted about being ousted from Coinbase. In December, a host of processing services stopped working with the company. It is unclear exactly when the Coinbase accounts might have been de-activated.

Gab was founded in 2016 as something of an alternative to Twitter, which had cracked down on high-profile accounts associated with the alt-right, a loosely organized far right movement.  The company bills itself as "a social network that champions free speech, individual liberty and the free flow of information online."

The site has gotten a reputation as a safe space for white nationalists and neo-Nazis. The suspect in the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting published several anti-Semitic posts on the platform, prompted services such as GoDaddy and PayPal to cut ties with Gab. 

"Gab does not censor controversial opinions that are protected by the First Amendment," Torba said via email. "When a company like Coinbase no-platforms us, they're really just saying to internet users that freedom of speech is less important than their virtue signaling credentials. We trust the market will vote with its feet."

Update, 3:16 p.m.: Adds response from Coinbase.