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The Tor Project won’t censor the Daily Stormer—here’s why

After Google, GoDaddy, and Cloudflare booted the neo-Nazi site from their services, the Daily Stormer fled to the dark web, where it could only be accessed by the Tor browser. Some have called on the Tor Project, which is responsible for maintaining the Tor browser (but not the sites on the dark web), to ban the Daily Stormer from being accessible from its browser. Now the Tor Project has announced it won’t do so, and gave a pretty good reasoning why in a blog post:

We’ve heard that the hate-spewing website Daily Stormer has moved to a Tor onion service.

We are disgusted, angered, and appalled by everything these racists stand for and do. We feel this way any time the Tor network and software are used for vile purposes. But we can’t build free and open source tools that protect journalists, human rights activists, and ordinary people around the world if we also control who uses those tools. Tor is designed to defend human rights and privacy by preventing anyone from censoring things, even us. 

Ironically, the Tor software has been designed and written by a diverse team including people of many religions, races, gender identities, sexual orientations, and points on the (legitimate, non-Nazi) political spectrum. We are everything they claim to despise. And we work every day to defend the human rights they oppose. 

They feel powerful by spewing hate, whining, bullying, and promoting violence against others. But together, we are more powerful. 

Tor stands against racism and bigotry wherever and whenever such hatred rears its ugly head. It is our work to provide everyone with the best possible security and privacy tools so human dignity and freedom can be promoted all over the world.

MG