Letterboxd has banned film critic Jacob Smith’s Society Reviews account.
In a post to Society Reviews earlier this month, Smith revealed that Letterboxd banned their account which included over 500 reviews on the site.
Smith wrote, “Our Letterboxd page for Society Reviews has been removed without notice. As you see in the link provided all 500+ reviews posted on the site have been scrubbed clean and all links to our page and reviews are currently broken.”
Smith speculated the reason for being banned was “that someone was not happy about the opinions and views towards certain films on a site that allegedly encourages the expression of opinion on the film.”
In an update Smith detailed that he received an email from Letterboxd explaining why the account was banned.
“Your account was removed from our service because several of your reviews were in serious breach of our community policy.
You must not use the Service to promote, engage in or incite hate, violence, discrimination or intolerance, including based on race, age, gender, gender identity, ethnicity, religion, disability or sexual orientation.
Letterboxd provided no context as to what content violated its policy. This is something that our website has also experienced with Facebook just last year.
Smith and his Society Reviews is just the latest in an ever-growing list of individuals and websites who have been shut down by big tech companies.
That list includes:
- Nick Fuentes, who was demonetized and banned for a week from YouTube.
- A Google leak revealed a number of websites were included on a Google Now Search blacklist,
- Patreon and Bonfire shutdown Soph’s accounts after she was banned from YouTube.
- LifeSite News was banned from Apple News.
- Mombot was suspended from Twitter.
- Reddit quarantined the massively popular The_Donald subreddit.
- Political cartoonist and former Marvel Comics artist Mike Harris was banned from Facebook over an abortion cartoon.
- Twitter suspended independent journalist Nick Monroe.
- Twitter suspended actor James Woods.
And the list goes on and on.
Smith spoke with Christian Toto of Hollywood in Toto about Letterboxd dropping the ban hammer, where he revealed he never received notification about the ban.
Toto asked, “How were you notified/alerted to your reviews going missing on the site?
“I wasn’t. So last week, I was trying to log in to add some entries for the last two films I reviewed (“Gretel & Hansel” and “The Rhythm Section”). As I tried to access my account, it’s telling me my password is incorrect. I thought to myself, that was odd because I hadn’t changed it.
So then I tried to reset my password, and it’s telling me that my account no longer exists.
It was then that I found out my entire account had been deleted, nearly 500 reviews, including a few I had written exclusively for Letterboxd.
There was a follower of mine who was booted from Letterboxd a year ago under similar circumstances, and right there I knew they had banned me from the site.”
“I didn’t receive a word from the company, not a warning or a notice.
I emailed their help desk and straight-up asked them what had happened. I was told, and I quote, “Your account was removed from our service because several of your reviews were in serious breach of our community policy.”
They then told me that the rule I broke “allegedly” was promoting, engaging in or inciting hate, violence, discrimination or intolerance, including based on race, age, gender, gender identity, ethnicity, religion, disability or sexual orientation.
So after being told that me, a black libertarian film critic, was guilty of promoting hate and discrimination via the platform of mainstream movie reviews, I had a good 10 to 15 minute laugh.
I asked them which reviews (since there were several according to them) violated their TOS [Terms of Service] and why wasn’t I made aware of this beforehand. They refused to answer any of my follow-up questions.”
Smith then speculates his account was banned due to his review of Queen & Slim starring Jodie Turner-Smith.
“It wasn’t until I got a message from a follower on Letterboxd that apparently someone within the company took exception to my “Queen & Slim” review that was posted back in December where I called the Black Lives Matter themes of the film radical and exhausting, not to mention a fundamental failure of a romance movie. That likely led to my removal from Letterboxd.”
Letterboxd is supposedly a film review sharing site that allows amateur and independent reviewers to share their thoughts.
From what we can see here, you can share your thoughts as long as you’re not libertarian and black, like Jacob Smith.