GoFundMe and the Nag’s Head Light: How Crowdfunding Has Become The Latest Battleground Over Free Speech
Monday February 7, 2022
GoFundMe’s suspension of millions to support protesting truckers in Canada shocked many, particularly when the company initially announced its intention to distribute the money to other charities. It was less of a surprise for those of us who have criticized the company for years over its use of the platform to target and block funds for conservative and libertarian causes. Indeed, the company has revised an old practice known as the “Nag’s Head light” in luring the unsuspecting into what has become a liberal lockbox on funds.
In the Carolinas, locals would sometimes tie a lantern under the head of a horse to lure ships to their doom. Thinking the light was a ship in deep water, the ships would unwittingly sail into the shore rocks where they would be stripped of their cargo. That is how the resort town Nag’s Head, North Carolina got its name.
GoFundMe is the ultimate Nag’s Head operation. It draws conservative and libertarian causes to its shore with promise of being a neutral crowdfunding site. At its creation, the founders pledged to change the world by “disrupting giving” by handing control to average people in supporting others with common values and views.