- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 31, 2017

Internet regulators in the European country of Albania are the latest to take action against The Daily Stormer, a notorious neo-Nazi website that’s struggled to stay online since instigating an unprecedented crackdown this month against sites publishing hate speech.

The Daily Stormer disappeared Wednesday from its most recent web address, dailystormer.al, after the Albanian government allegedly ordered a regional domain host to eject the infamous website two days after going live at its latest address — one of a handful The Stormer has rotated through since being booted from its .com domain and effectively banned from the internet this month after its publisher mocked a woman killed protesting a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

“We’re sorry to report that AKEP (the registry of all .AL domains) has gave an order to disable dailystormer.al,” Bulletproof Domain, the company that offered the .al address, said Wednesday. “This is out of the registrar and our control.”

The Daily Stormer had violated “clear regulations on racism and hateful agenda,” said Host.al, another major regional domain registrar.

AKEP, formally Albania’s Electronic and Postal Communications Authority, did not immediately return an email seeking comment.

“Yes, the governing authorities of Albanian domains have said Daily Stormer is not allowed to have a domain,” wrote Andrew “weev” Auernheimer, The Stormer’s administrator. “I knew this one was gonna die, but at least it lasted a few days. States comprised of lazy, dumb people move much more slowly.”

The Daily Stormer attracted roughly 3 million visitors monthly visitors at its original domain name, dailystormer.com, but was booted from that address amid a high-profile dispute this month with leading registrars GoDaddy and Google.

Both companies banned The Stormer shortly after its publisher penned a crude article attacking Heather Heyer, the counterprotester killed during the Aug. 12 “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, and tech titans including Facebook, Twitter, Cloudflare and others have since followed suit.

The Stormer subsequently migrated to a handful of other domains before relegating itself to the so-called deep web only to briefly reemerge at the Albanian address Monday with impressive results, according to its publisher.

“I am proud to announce that the few days we were up on .al, we had some of the highest traffic in the entire history of the site, breaking half a million uniques every day,” Daily Stormer publisher Andrew Anglin said Thursday through his account on Gab, an alternative social-media service.

“Every time we get shut these numbers go up,” added Mr. Anglin, 33. “People are very interested in the most censored publication ever.”

The Daily Stormer is hardly the white supremacist website to come under fire as of late, however. Stormfront, a website launched in 1995 by former Ku Klux Klan leader Don Black, was abruptly booted from its domain of 22 years last week amid similar accusations of propagating hate speech.

“I figured that was just the first domino,” Mr. Black said during a radio broadcast Thursday morning with respect to The Daily Stormer being seized this month. “And sure enough, we’re the second domino.”

“There will be many more dominos, though. Any website – any pro-white website – will be shut down unless we are able to fight this thing legally,” said Mr. Black, 64.

Stormfront plans to take legal action next week against the registrar that seized the site, Mr. Black said. The registrar, Network Solutions, has not responded to multiple requests for comment.

• Andrew Blake can be reached at ablake@washingtontimes.com.

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