Shut down the subreddit r/incels.
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Reddit is an online social news aggregation, content ratings website in which users can up/downvote content to determine its location on the page. It is the self-stylized "front page of the internet". Content entries are organized by areas of interest called "subreddits". A subreddit can be devoted to any topic of discussion and provides a platform for diverse conversation.
One such subreddits, r/incels, has become a toxic echo chamber for its users, and is a dark corner of the internet that finally needs to be addressed.
"Incel" stands for involuntarily celibate. An incel claims that they have been denied sex by women (and society as a whole) based on their looks, social inadequacies, awkwardness, demeanour, etc. The subreddit proports to be a support group for it's members with the goal of providing an outlet for the frustrations and depression they claim to be inherent with being Incel. However, the moderators have allowed this group to become the epicenter for misogyny on Reddit, banning users that disagree with the hate speech that floods this forum.
Incels believe that they are entitled to the experience of sex. With most every incel claiming to be unattractive, they believe that society has turned against them and are denying them a basic human right. This flawed way of thinking leads most incels to self-professed depression that has turned into bitterness that floods the subreddit's posts. All sexually active women are routinely called whores. Violence against women is encouraged. Rape against women is justified and encouraged. "Rape Farms" (in which all women would be held against their will and used only for reproductive purposes) are routinely advocated.
Users often canonize Elliot Rodger, the 22 year old who, on May 23, 2014, killed six people and injured fourteen others near the campus of University of California, Santa Barbara. Rodger claimed in his YouTube manifesto that being denied attention from women his whole life has driven him to seek "retribution". On the subreddit, Rodger is often referred to as "Saint Elliot" with many praising his actions and claiming that they would like to follow in his path.
The moderators of r/incels are incels themselves. They ban users who offer advice, delete comments that disagree with an incel's assertions, and filter posts that do not fall strictly in line with the incel view of our world. "Suicide Fuel" is a common tag to many incel posts, in which incels are reminded by their counterparts of the "truth of their reality" and encouraged to commit suicide. The "Life Fuel" tag ordinarily precedes posts in which violence against women is used, a rape had been commited, a woman is shamed online for her sexuality, etc. Some of r/incels most popular users have already been rumored to have commited suicide.
This subreddit is often aggressively in violation of Reddit's content policy
As of a few days ago, the subreddit has gone private, giving complete control of the site's activities and content to the moderators. I believe this seclusion into the despair that the group creates for itself is the final straw.
We also call for Reddit to be vigilant of any new subreddits that might surface, with the intent of reverting back to r/incels destructive practices.
Please sign this petition as an effort to send love and support to members of our society who are lost in their pain. Thank you.
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