Milo Yiannopoulos appears at LeWeb'13 Conference @ Methodist Central Hall, Westminster in London on June 5, 2013 (via Wiki Commons).
Opinion

Opinion: On Milo Yiannopoulos getting kicked off of Coinbase 3 minutes after joining

Alt-right clown Milo Yiannopoulos got kicked off of crypto trading platform Coinbase in just three minutes—a record no doubt. He had previously been banned from funding site Patreon after just one day. Unlike a digital crypto wallet, the U.S.-based exchange follows a strict KYC (know-your-customer) protocol that involves submitting proof of ID to get your Coinbase Pro account working. So while Bitcoin is free and open, Milo’s ability to link it to a U.S. bank account is not.

There is a slight possibility that Milo got banned for ID issues. Coinbase’s KYC policy states, “If your ID document is issued by a country other than the country you are a resident of, it may not be possible to complete ID verification at this time.” But it may not be permanent: “We’re always working on improving our verification service and hope to support your specific situation as soon as possible.” Milo was born in the U.K. and works mainly in the U.S., so it is possible that he doesn’t have a U.S. ID that Coinbase would require.

[Modern Consensus has reached out to our contacts at Coinbase and we’ll update the story if we hear back from them.]

Still, this wouldn’t be the first time that Coinbase banned someone accused of being too cozy with White Nationalists. In January, Coinbase reportedly terminated the personal merchant account of Gab founder Andrew Torba. It was, coincidentally, the same day that Milo was banned from Facebook.

Little infants with no moral compass just love to get a victim card dealt to them. However, Milo did not post anything from Coinbase about the reasoning for his ban. It could just as easily be from submitting an expired ID or one that had too much glare.

Milo is no stranger to bans. Let’s just take a look at the places that have banished Milo recently:

  1. Twitter
  2. Instagram
  3. PayPal
  4. Venmo
  5. Eventbrite
  6. Shopify
  7. Patreon
  8. Coinbase
  9. Periscope
  10. Mailchimp
  11. Tumblr
Milo Yiannopolous getting married to his husband, John. The photo was posted on Instagram before the Facebook-owned company booted him.
Milo Yiannopolous getting married to his husband, John. The photo was posted on Instagram before the Facebook-owned company booted him.

We have this information handy because Milo didn’t take his ban lightly. On the alt-right-friendly social network Gab (see, because he can’t use normal sites) he listed them and wrote: “Like John Lennon, I take ‘n[****]r’ to mean any oppressed person. Today’s n[****]rs are me, Laura and Alex Jones. And yes, my husband gave me permission to say that.” (Milo is married to an African-American man and he uses this often as proof that he’s not a racist.)

In 2017, a clip that seemed to show Milo promoting pedophilia got him fired from speaking at CPAC and had his book deal cancelled on the same day. That was a Monday. The next day he had to resign from Breitbart after a Buzzfeed exposé showed Milo singing “America the Beautiful” on a video “while several neo-Nazis performed sieg heil gestures in the background.”

Milo has a bigger problem since he lost the support of the Mercer family, which owns a stake in Breitbart. In 2018, Milo had to fire his own staff after banking scion and cryptocurrency billionaire and Milo-backer Matthew Mellon was found dead of an apparent drug overdose.

He also ran an ICO for the MILOCoin which has really, really tumbled since last year. He has not signed up for the Patreon crypto-alternative BitPatron, but his ban from Patreon is one of the reasons the alternative got so much attention, according to Bitcoin Magazine.

Free speech gets muddier when you have to defend listening to someone you don’t like. In general, I think we could do with a little more listening. But figures like Milo just want to suck the air out of the dialogue to bring attention to themselves. He’s the alt-right version of the Onion article, “Marilyn Manson Now Going Door to Door Trying to Shock People.”

If you want to have a serious discussion about how the IRS should divvy up the tax load next year, I’m all ears. If you want to distract from that necessary democratic debate for your own selfish reasons, then maybe it’s time for you to leave the debate stage.

In the meantime, if you get kicked off every decent platform known to man and you need to take donations in bitcoin you can always unload it on the street.

[Opinions solely those of the author and not necessarily those of Modern Consensus.]

Brendan Sullivan is a writer, producer, and author of the memoir Rivington Was Ours: Lady Gaga, the Lower East Side, and the Prime of Our Lives. Disclosure: he owns cryptocurrencies. Follow him on Twitter.

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