Facebook shut down British activist Tommy Robinson’s account this week after 1 million views within 24 hours of publishing his film that exposes the Panorama documentary series with undercover footage showing how the BBC aimed to set him up for their ‘Tommy Takedown’ episode. Facebook’s decision follows earlier moves by Twitter and Paypal last year, claiming Mr. Robinson violated their rules on "hateful conduct". The censorship is disabling Mr. Robinson’s ability to defend himself against counter-attack articles from the mainstream news media outlets, including the Guardian and Independent.
The film shows taxpayer-funded BBC journalist John Sweeney acknowledging collaboration with the far-left organization Hope Not Hate for ‘Tommy Takedown’, including blackmail, intimidation, and threats to coerce negative reviews from Mr. Robinson’s former employees in order to invent stories such as a fake sexual harassment allegation, editing footage and images to wrongly portray Mr. Robinson, and expensing over £220 for one meeting alone, of primarily alcohol, back to the BBC during the process of coercing one former employee.
Mr. Robinson says ultimately his film isn’t about him and the BBC’s attempt to discredit him with their lack of impartiality, but about the public who are being lied to and manipulated by the mainstream news media who colludes with far-left groups such as Hope Not Hate. Hope Not Hate calls itself an "antifascist" organization that links conservatives falsely with the terms "far right" and "extremist" through tactics including digital editing. HNH calls people racists and Nazis without evidence and their efforts to silence opinions scares people into not speaking out for fear of losing their reputation, employment, and friends. HNH cultivate relationships with the mainstream news media who use their reports for the foundations of articles. They are funded by British trade unions, many of which support the Labour Party, and left-wing billionaire George Soros’ Open Society Foundations, in addition to activist support from the far-left extremist group Antifa, known for regularly inciting violence at otherwise peaceful protests. In 2011, paid Hope Not Hate activist turned Telegraph columnist Dan Hodges admitted to how the group operates, saying, “It was no-holds-barred, bare knuckle, PR. We used every dirty, underhand, low down, unscrupulous trick in the book."
A crowd of 20,000 supporters showed up to support the expose on the BBC, who reported only 4,000 protestors were in attendance. Mr. Robinson’s hour-long film, which shows views totaling over 700,000, can still be viewed on YouTube.
Facebook and several other social media and payment portal platforms have increasingly been accused of censoring conservatives and viewpoints that counter the globalist, progressive narrative over the past several years, supported by the fact that these platforms continue to allow terrorists and traffickers, among other illegal activities, to remain on the platform well beyond the timeframe stated by the companies that these would be identified and removed by staff. In their statement, Facebook said:
“So when ideas and opinions cross the line and amount to hate speech that may create an environment of intimidation and exclusion for certain groups in society – in some cases with potentially dangerous offline implications – we take action. Our public Community Standards state this sort of speech is not acceptable on Facebook – and when we become aware of it, we remove it as quickly as we can. Our rules also make clear that individuals and organizations that are engaged in “organized hate” are not allowed on the platform, and that praise or support for these figures and groups is also banned. This is true regardless of the ideology they espouse.
Tommy Robinson’s Facebook Page has repeatedly broken these standards, posting material that uses dehumanizing language and calls for violence targeted at Muslims. He has also behaved in ways that violate our policies around organized hate. As a result, in accordance with our policies, we have removed Tommy Robinson’s official Facebook Page and Instagram profile. This is not a decision we take lightly, but individuals and organizations that attack others on the basis of who they are have no place on Facebook or Instagram.”
With his film, Mr. Robinson is challenging the public’s perception that payment of the BBC television license fee, which funds BBC programming, is mandatory. In another video posted on YouTube this week, Mr. Robinson says the license is not legally required and shows the steps for how people can easily opt-out of the fee, which is set to raise to £155 per year this April.
On his website, Mr. Robinson writes:
“I will expose and show you that Panorama’s documentaries are scripted in order to fit an agenda to demonise myself and others. I will provide proof that the BBC edit evidence in order to create fake news. How many other BBC shows follow these same corrupt practices?
We pay a licence fee, the BBC is owned by the public and I will also expose expenses scandals. This will show the contempt for the licence fee payer and the way they spend our money. The public should no longer fund the propaganda machine of the establishment, least of all when that machine is used against its own people and its own countries interests.”
After Mr. Robinson’s Facebook was shut down, the same followed for key UKIP members including Young Independence South West Chairman Reece Coombes and Veterans Against Terrorism contributors Darrell Goodliffe, Damien Heads, and Richard Inman, who found their Facebook accounts suspended without any explanation from the social media platform. UKIP Leader Gerard Batten said, "I would expect critical media outlets to be shut down in tin-pot dictatorships, not the United Kingdom. If anything, it is a sign that UKIP and other voices are causing a stir on social media which deeply concerns the political establishment. I call on Facebook to reinstate all of the accounts as soon as possible and I wish to re-state UKIP's commitment to freedom of speech and expression. UKIP is the only party interested in genuine free speech and countering the politically correct MSM narrative. We are moving into a dark place in our national life, and if people are concerned, they need to support those who defend their traditional rights and freedoms." Politicalite founder Jordan James, who is of mixed-race heritage, added, “Removing Tommy, who is a key political figure and represents millions of working-class people across the UK is tantamount to foreign political interference and an attack on democracy.”
Mr. Robinson’s notoriety began in 2009 when he protested alongside the United Peoples of Luton against the attacks by Islamist groups on Royal Anglian Regiment troops returning from the war in Afghanistan. Soon after, he co-founded the English Defence League and European Defence League after a newspaper article stated local Islamists were attempting to recruit men outside a bakery in Luton to fight for the Taliban in Afghanistan. Mr. Robinson repeatedly insisted that the EDL was "against the rise of radical Islam" and his aim was to "counter Islamist ideology [...] not with violence but with democratic ideas". He has criticized "politicians, the media and police for failing to tackle certain criminal activities because of the fear of being labelled Islamophobic."
In May 2017, Mr. Robinson was arrested for contempt of court after he attempted to take video of the defendants in an ongoing rape trial outside Canterbury Crown Court of the Huddersfield grooming gang, receiving a 13-month jail sentence for contempt of court in May 2018, which was later overturned for a retrial. The Huddersfield grooming gang were the largest ever convicted for sex abuse in the United Kingdom, of sexual offences against girls in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, United Kingdom. Charged in April 2017 and convicted in 2018 in three separate trials for sexual offences committed between 2004 and 2011, 27 men were convicted of more than 120 offences, including rape and trafficking, against 18 girls aged between 11 and 17 and jailed for a total of 220 years. Two women were accused of child neglect. An additional 31 defendants had been charged with sexual offences committed between 2005 and 2012 in August 2018.
At one of the trials, Mr. Robinson filmed the defendants though reporting restrictions on the trial were imposed in November 2017 under the 1981 Contempt of Court Act to avoid prejudice on subsequent trials. These restrictions on reporting was criticized by many people who said it was a cover-up as its perpetrators were ‘Asian’ and ‘Muslims’, their victims white British, and that it amounted to state censorship. Mr. Robinson’s matter came before The English Court of Appeal, where he claimed that he had not admitted to the charges or been given a chance to apologise. His lawyer claimed that his initial contempt trial was flawed whereas the details of the charge were not clear and therefore his sentence was unfair. Mr. Robinson said he had been held in solitary confinement for two and a half months and also put in a room where Muslim prisoners nearly beat him to death. He said the mainstream news media deliberately got the facts wrong, claiming he had pled guilty though he hadn't, and failing to read court transcripts. During his imprisonment, 600,000 signed a petition and 30,000 protested demanding Mr. Robinson’s release.