- The Washington Times - Friday, September 1, 2017

The once-thriving message boards at Stormfront, the internet’s longest-running white nationalist site, have all but gone dark after its domain was abruptly seized last week after decades at the same address.

A handful of longtime Stormfront users – registered members of what watchdogs have labeled one of the internet’s most infamous hate sites – have circumvented the practically unprecedented domain seizure and are continuing to post on its forums, registrar be damned.

Network Solutions, Stormfront’s domain registrar, booted the website from its address last Friday, Aug. 25, effectively displacing it from its URL of 22 years, Stormfront.org, and locking out its owner and administrator, 64-year-old Florida resident and former Ku Klux Klan leader Don Black.

But through formats like radio broadcasts and other white nationalists forums, Stormfront users taken to sharing instructions enabling fellow members to still access their online stomping grounds by slightly modifying a file on their computers.

“There is a way to get there because our servers are still up,” Mr. Black told listeners during Friday’s broadcast of Stormfront Radio, adding: “It involves putting one line in your ‘host’ file.”

“The word is out there as to how to do it,” he continued before citing one of several pro-white websites where the instructions were shared.

Amid a crackdown against hate sites rekindled after a violent white nationalist rally last month in Charlottesville, Virginia, Stormfront is struggling but isn’t sunk: one week after its domain went dark, as few of a half-dozen registered Stormfront members logged-on Friday afternoon – a fraction of a percentage of the forums’ nearly 330,000 account holders.

Despite being without a domain, Stormfront users in the single digits have continued to cling to their internet home, commenting Friday on posts with subjects like “Petition to declare George Soros a terrorist” and “Negress wants Antifa to attack small white towns and force sexual degeneracy on children.”

Another post written a day after Stormfront’s domain was seized has been viewed over 500 times and garnered comments from the same few registered users, offering a glimpse of the site’s current activity and audience.

“Jews now engaging in open warfare,” wrote a registered Stormfront user. “They may be able to censor Stormfront, but they will regret this decision. Their heinous tactics are now blatant and clear.”

“It’s so good to see this site again,” a self-described “Vegan Christian Nationalist” wrote elsewhere. “I hope everyone is doing alright despite the present difficulties.”

Mr. Black launched Stormfront.org in 1995, and over the next two decades it swelled in membership to become one of the web’s most popular websites devoted to pro-white issues. It grew to hold 30,000 registered members in 2005 and 313,000 in 2016, and more than 12,000 account holders were signed-on at the same moment in Jan. 2016, according to its own statistics.

After a protester was killed last month protesting a white nationalist gathering in Charlottesville, however, internet companies far and wide have taken aim at websites like Stormfront for publishing hate speech. The Daily Stormer, a crude website that lauded the protester’s death, was banned afterwards by GoDaddy, Google, Facebook and Cloudflare, to name a few, and most recently garnered the attention of the Albanian government this week after briefly launching on a regionally maintained web address.

Neither Mr. Black nor his website’s registrar have responded to multiple requests for comment.

The Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, a D.C. based legal group, said it punted Stormfront off its web address by raising concerns with Network Solutions about the website’s content, and Mr. Black said during Friday’s radio broadcast his lawyers intend to sue the registrar.

“I told my attorney yesterday that unless Network Solutions accedes to our demand letter, that this could be a drawn-out process, as far as legal action,” Mr. Black said.

Sign up for Daily Newsletters

Manage Newsletters

Copyright © 2019 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide