YouTube Finally Terminates Alt-Right Troll's Account After Anti-Mask Videos
YouTube has removed notorious alt-right troll Tim Gionet, who goes by “Baked Alaska” on social media, after he created numerous videos of himself harassing service workers for wearing masks. In one, Gionet refused to wear a mask inside a store and the police can be seen detaining the 32-year-old for trespassing (it’s unclear if he was actually arrested). On Monday, YouTube terminated Gionet’s account for repeated violations of their community guidelines.
In a livestream posted shortly before his termination, Gionet enters a store and, when handed a mask, throws it back at the employees, saying that Arizona has not implemented a mask mandate. Of course, private enterprises like stores and restaurants can choose their own mask policies. When the police arrive, Gionet pleads to be allowed to leave the store. The video, which is preserved in a Reddit thread, ends with Gionet handing over his ID and putting down the camera.
Gionet, who has gained a significant social media following over the past five years, was banned from Twitter in 2017 after tweeting anti-Semitic comments. That same year he attended a few alt-right rallies, including the Unite The Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. He has openly sympathized with neo-Nazi figures like Richard Spencer and David Duke and is a vocal Trump supporter.
His return to the spotlight was called out by creator Vic Berger, who previously chronicled some of the Gionet’s more cringe-worthy exploits.
On the Boss Files podcast over the weekend, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki told CNN's Poppy Harlow that YouTube is “looking very closely” at QAnon, an alt-right adjacent group of conspiracy theorists. Twitter, Facebook, and even Etsy have already banned QAnon from their platforms. While YouTube swiftly removed Gionet after being publicly called out on Twitter, it is not encouraging that a notorious troll was able to get this far in plain sight.