It’s not just social networks and digital marketplaces cracking down on QAnon. Peloton has confirmed to Business Insider that it has pulled QAnon hashtags that supporters of the conspiracy theory were using to connect to each other on the fitness platform. A spokesperson said Peloton removed the content due to a “zero-tolerance” approach to “hateful content.”
Peloton removes anything that “does not reflect our company’s values of inclusiveness and unity or maintain a respectful environment,” the representative said.
QAnon has revolved around unsupported claims that parts of the US government are involved in human tracking and pedophilia, and that Donald Trump would ultimately take those offenders down. Some of the theory’s more extreme devotees have been involved in violence, hate and harassment, with the FBI going so far as to declare QAnon a domestic terrorist threat.
The tags didn’t appear to have large followings — a Q tag spotted by Washington Post opinions editor Drew Goins had 63 members shortly before it became unusable. Still, this shows just how difficult it can be to contain potentially harmful online movements, especially for Peloton and others that don’t normally have to aggressively moderate their services.
getting radicalized on Peloton pic.twitter.com/kh9UvfQKg7— Drew Goins (@drewlgoins) October 6, 2020