PayPal, the online credit card processor, just cut off Rebel News.
I really need your help. I hate to say it, but this could actually destroy us. We use PayPal to process about a million dollars a year. That covers half of our staff payroll. This could force us to lay off staff, which obviously we must not do. We just hired some great new reporters.
We’re doing our most important work ever, both our journalism and our civil liberties work. So, I’m not just worried about Rebel News. We're currently fundraising for civil liberties lawyers to help more than 1,100 low-income people who have received lockdown tickets. PayPal banning us would harm our ability to keep our promise to those people.
WHAT DID PAYPAL DO?
PayPal has been acting very strange. We’ve had a six-year business relationship with them, processing more than 150,000 transactions, totalling more than 8 million dollars. We’re a big client. But with no notice at all, they just breached the contract. They ambushed us. They sent us a form letter, by email, after business hours, on a Friday night before the weekend.
It wasn’t even signed by anyone, it had no contact info, there was no way to appeal it, no explanation, it just said we were cancelled. You can see that email for yourself:
They say we violated their terms of service. But they didn’t say how or when or what or even suggest how to fix whatever the problem might be. I’ve read their terms of service carefully — that’s our contract. It says we can’t use PayPal to sell things like drugs or weapons or stolen property. Things like that. We don’t do anything even close to that — we’re a news site, and we work with a civil liberties charity. We’ve simply never broken PayPal’s rules, ever. And they’ve never before said we have. And yet, on a Friday night, they simply cut off our business, immediately — no explanation, nothing. That’s cancel culture. And it’s also an attack on 150,000 of our customers who are PayPal users, and their rights, too.
On Monday, we had our lawyer write a friendly letter to PayPal, assuming this was just a mistake, giving them the benefit of the doubt. And I kept quiet about it. Look, mistakes do happen — but it seemed odd. We’re a preferred customer. Because we do so many transactions with them, they give us favourable rates. We’ve never had a problem in six years. Our lawyers emailed PayPal’s head office in the U.S., and also their Canadian branch several times.
It’s been nearly a week, and they haven’t even acknowledged receipt of our letters. Our lawyers have phoned and left messages, but they haven’t got a call back. Our accountant got through to a PayPal call centre, and they said we’d be receiving an explanation by email within 24 hours. It’s been days, and it hasn’t come. We’re bleeding — thousands of dollars a day.
Look, this isn’t a mistake. It’s a cancel culture attack on the largest independent news agency in Canada. It’s censorship.
A credit card processing company has decided to illegally and unethically breach its contract with us, leaving us high and dry on a Friday night, because we’re conservative.
A COORDINATED ATTACK
YouTube just demonetized us, and suspended us for a week. Now this, just days later.
In both cases, we had a perfect track record — never a violation. Is that a coincidence? And it just happens to coincide with Justin Trudeau introducing censorship legislation in Parliament targeting big tech companies that give platforms to his political critics.
And remember, just last month we showed you access to information documents proving that Trudeau’s censorship minister, Steven Guilbeault, just gave $268,000 to a left-wing activist group specifically for them to lodge malicious complaints against Trudeau’s enemies. Were they behind this? Who was? PayPal won’t even answer our calls.
The YouTube demonetization cost us $400,000. But this is much more dangerous. PayPal isn’t in the content business. They’re the leading online credit card processor. We have built so much of our business around them; we have encouraged thousands of people to join PayPal just to do business with us; we have many people who automatically give a monthly contribution to us through PayPal — that’s just been shut down.
NOT JUST REBEL NEWS
It gets worse, if you can believe it. At the same time, PayPal cancelled my personal account. I haven’t really used it in years, so it’s impossible that it could have violated any terms of service. This is political targeting. It’s political punishment. From a credit card company.
That’s like China’s “social credit” system, where you can be banned from buying a cell phone or even renting an apartment, if you criticize the Chinese Communist Party. But this is Canada. And if a credit card processor can do this to you, why couldn’t your bank shut down your family savings account? How about your phone company? Or any public utility?
I should tell you, PayPal also cancelled a third account — the one for our non-profit called For Canada. That’s the organization we used for charity projects like when we raised money for the Red Cross after the Fort McMurray wildfires; or when we raised money for the son of Nathan Cirillo, the Canadian soldier murdered at the National War Memorial in 2014 by a terrorist.
What possible reason would PayPal have to shut down that non-profit? Other than it’s associated with conservatives. That’s why I don’t think this is a mistake. They’re trying to destroy us. And they don’t have the courage to even tell us to our face.
WHAT CAN YOU DO?
We’re bleeding heavily now. A million dollar loss.
They want us to lay down and die. Well, we’re not going to. We’re going to fight back because they’re wrong — legally and morally.
I can think of two things to do — if you want to help us live.
1. Please share this video far and wide. Forward it to your friends. Let them know what is happening. They might not even believe that a credit card processor would do this. It’s happening. And if they can do it to us, they can do it to you. Please help ring the alarm.
2. Please donate now and help us fight back. I have instructed a legal dream team to file a lawsuit against PayPal as soon as next week. For breach of contract and for unlawful interference with economic relations.
I expect we’ll sue the people who induced PayPal to breach its contract with us, too. But PayPal is one of the biggest companies in the world — they’ve gotten rich off the lockdowns, just like Amazon has. They’re now worth 300 billion dollars. They probably have 100 lawyers working for them. Fine. I like David and Goliath battles. And my guys aren’t too shabby either.
WE ARE SUING PAYPAL
We're using the same dream team that beat Justin Trudeau at the Federal Court of Canada when he banned our reporters from attending the leaders debates. These guys are becoming experts at fighting against cancel culture.
PayPal didn’t isn’t just harm us. They violated consumer protection laws — not just for us, as a merchant. But like I say — for the 150,000 PayPal users who just had their relationship with us destroyed for no good reason. That’s the kind of thing that financial regulators look at in the public interest.
Our lawyers are reporting PayPal’s misconduct to financial services regulators. Again, they might think they can ignore us. But I don’t think they can ignore banking regulators, do you?
That lawsuit against PayPal will surely cost us $150,000 dollars.
They’re going to try to do everything they can to beat us — because if we were to win, it would set a precedent that could stop them and every other credit card company and bank from cancelling people. And for some reason, they really want to cancel people. So this is more than just them crushing Rebel News; they want to make sure they continue to be able to do this at will. That’s why we’ve got to win — not just for us, but for everyone.
Can you please help me cover the $150,000 in legal fees?
I tell you, I’ve seen our dream team in court twice fighting David and Goliath battles, and they absolutely stunned the Goliath both times. If anyone can do it, they can.
RECOUPING OUR LOST REVENUE
Fighting PayPal is going to take a long time. Especially with the courts slowed down because of the pandemic. And in the meantime, we’ve got a hole of almost a million dollars in the side of our boat.
I know I often ask for help to fundraise, but it’s usually for specific projects. Not today. Today I’m asking you to help me Save Rebel News — truly. Because we just can’t continue to operate as we have, with a million dollar hole. The math just doesn’t add up.
PayPal wants to kill us. That’s the assumption I have to make, especially since they targeted me personally and our non-profit group too, and they won’t even pick up the phone.
We have to live. I promise I will fight with every ounce of strength I have. And so will our entire team. We’ll fight like our freedom depends on it. And we’ll fight like our jobs and our company depend on it. Because they do.
If you have ever watched a Rebel News video, if you have ever felt like we stood up for you, like we stood up for you against the bullies, well, this is the time to help us. Will you help us against PayPal?
My friends, I ask you, if you want Rebel News to survive this cancel culture attack, please consider making a donation now.
I need to plug a million dollar hole in our company — and just as important, we need to set a legal precedent that no tech company can simply decide to destroy your life one Friday night because they don’t like your opinions. This is the big one. Thank you.