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InfoWars is a far-right American conspiracy theory and fake news website owned by Alex Jones. It was founded in 1999, and operates under Free Speech Systems LLC.
Talk shows and other content for the site are created primarily in studios at an undisclosed location in an industrial area in the outskirts of Austin, Texas. The InfoWars website receives approximately 10 million monthly visits, making its reach greater than some mainstream news websites such as The Economist and Newsweek.
The site has regularly published fake stories which have been linked to harassment of victims. In February 2018, Jones, the publisher, director and owner of InfoWars, was accused of discrimination and sexually harassing employees. InfoWars, and in particular Jones, advocate numerous conspiracy theories particularly around purported domestic false flag operations by the U.S. Government (which they allege include the 9/11 attacks and Sandy Hook shootings). InfoWars has issued retractions various times as a result of legal challenges. Jones has had contentious material removed, and has also been suspended and banned from many social media websites, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Apple, and Roku.
InfoWars earns revenue from the sale of products pitched by Jones during the show. It has been called as much “an online store that uses Mr. Jones’s commentary to move merchandise”, as a media outlet.
InfoWars was created in 1999 by American conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, who remains its controlling influence. InfoWars features The Alex Jones Show on their broadcasts and was established as a public-access television program aired in Austin, Texas in 1999.
During the 2016 presidential election, the website was promoted by bots connected to the Russian government.
In 2016, Paul Joseph Watson was hired as editor-at-large. In February 2017, political commentator Jerome Corsi was hired as Washington bureau chief, after InfoWars was granted a White House day pass. In June 2018, Corsi’s connection to InfoWars ended; he received six months severance payments.
In May 2017, Mike Cernovich joined the InfoWars team as a scheduled guest host for The Alex Jones Show, with CNN reporting the “elevation to InfoWars host represents the meteoric rise in his profile”.
In June 2017, it was announced Roger Stone, a former campaign advisor for Donald Trump, would be hosting his own InfoWars show “five nights a week”, with an extra studio being built to accommodate his show.
In March 2018, a number of major brands in the U.S. suspended their ads from InfoWars‘ YouTube channels, after CNN notified them.
In July 2018, YouTube removed four of InfoWars‘ uploaded videos that violated its policy against hate speech and suspended posts for 90 days. Facebook also banned Jones after it determined four videos on his pages violated its community standards in July 2018. In August 2018, YouTube, Apple, and Facebook removed content from Jones and InfoWars, citing their policies against hate speech and harassment.