Eventbrite is stamping out coronavirus lockdown protests

The company says it's taking action against events that violate local guidance around social distancing.

Alfred Ng Senior Reporter / CNET News
Alfred Ng was a senior reporter for CNET News. He was raised in Brooklyn and previously worked on the New York Daily News's social media and breaking news teams.
Alfred Ng
2 min read

Protesters ignoring social distancing guidelines outside the capitol in Washington state.

Alex Milan Tracy/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

If you have a protest or rally scheduled on Eventbrite while shelter-in-place orders are in effect, consider it canceled. The event-hosting platform said on Tuesday that it would be removing any events that violate social distancing guidelines on its page after CNET showed the company a rally planning to protest lockdown orders hosted on Eventbrite. 

Across the US, protesters have shown up to hospitals and at their local capitals urging government officials to reopen the economy after weeks of quarantining measures. The protesters were not social distancing, a measure urged by public health officials to reduce the spread of the coronavirus

Many of these protests were organized on Facebook, prompting the social media giant to start removing events that call for defying social distancing orders. Eventbrite said it is also taking action against events that would go against public health guidelines. 

"While we enable anyone to create an event and issue tickets for it through our platform, we require that all users abide by our Community Guidelines," an Eventbrite spokeswoman said in a statement. "When we become aware of any events that may violate our guidelines, we investigate and take necessary action. We consider gatherings in areas where there is specific guidance from public officials around social distancing and shelter in place as a violation, so are actively working to unpublish this event."

The company's statement comes after CNET found a "Freedom Rally" scheduled for May 2 in Ottawa, Canada's capital, set to take place on Parliament Hill and accusing the quarantine measures of being a "fake lockdown." 


Eventbrite removed this listing for a quarantine protest set for May 2.

Screenshot by Alfred Ng / CNET

Eventbrite took the post down several hours after it was asked about its policies on events that violate social distancing guidelines. 

The coronavirus pandemic has also led Eventbrite to lay off 45% of its staff, with the coronavirus pandemic drastically affecting the live-events market.  

Even after tech platforms booted protesters organizing rallies on their websites, the anti-quarantine events are still expected to happen. Influential figures and powerful conservative groups have been behind these protests, according toThe New York Times. 

These groups reportedly have been helping local protesters create their own websites to organize on, rather than relying on platforms like Facebook and Eventbrite to facilitate their rallies.

Watch this: Coronavirus lockdown: Why social distancing saves lives
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