While Epik has cited conservative bias as the reason its PayPal account was terminated, the news outlet Mashable revealed that its digital “alternative currency” Masterbucks was actually to blame.
Masterbucks can be purchased on Epik's site and the digital currency can be used to pay for its products or can even be converted into US dollars. However, according to a source close to the situation who spoke with Mashable, the company did not take the necessary legal steps to secure its digital currency.
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By failing to do so, Epik has made it quite easy for its customers and others to use Masterbucks to launder money online which put PayPal at financial risk by continuing to allow the company to use its payments platform.
Controversy is nothing new for Epik as the domain registrar is known for hosting the far-right site Gab and it formerly hosted the message board site 8chan as well.
In an open letter to PayPal employees, Epik SVP for strategy and communications Robert Davis called out the company for allegedly trying to silence conservative voices ahead of the 2020 election, saying:
“It would appear that in a direct effort to silence conservative voices, PayPal has terminated our payment services – just two weeks before a Presidential election. While the concept of technology firms targeting conservative-owned companies to deplatform, demonetize and deindex users is not unknown to us, the degree of tyranny and oppression that this particular action represents cannot go unaddressed by the American people.”
In a statement to Mashable though, a PayPal spokesperson explained that Epix had breached its User Agreement and this was the reason its account was deactivated, saying:
“PayPal has sophisticated risk controls in place to alert our teams to potentially violative activity occurring on our platforms. The company independently reviews each matter and bases its decisions on the management of risk and compliance with our long-standing User Agreement.”
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Via The Verge