Neo-Nazi site forced to take down Pepe the Frog images

Creator of cartoon frog Pepe used as symbol of alt-Right takes on neo-Nazi website which used Pepe the Frog as its mascot.


צילום: ISTOCK

When cartoonist Matt Furie drew Pepe the Frog for a comic series, all he meant to do was create an amphibian pothead.

But the cartoon frog, with a chubby face and half-closed eyes, has since been appropriated by a number of fringe right-wing movements, including a neo-Nazi website, whose members turned him into a mascot for their racist beliefs.

Now Furie is fighting to take Pepe back — and he’s winning.

The Daily Stormer, a popular neo-Nazi site, has taken down 90 percent of the 40 Pepe images it posted after Furie’s lawyers sent it copyright violation notices. The task was made harder because the website has moved to the “dark web,” a shadow internet, and kept getting shut down and hacked, according to Motherboard.

“The Daily Stormer has been a bit of an annoyance, frankly,” Louis Tompros, a lawyer on the case at the firm WilmerHale, told Motherboard. “For reasons separate and apart from copyright infringement, [The Daily Stormer has] been rejected and shut down by a variety of different ISPs over time.”

According to Motherboard, Furie also successfully stopped publication of “Pepe and Pede,” an alt-right children’s book that used Pepe’s image. And he’s requested that white supremacist Richard Spencer stop using the image of the frog.

Last year, in an attempt to stop the alt-right’s Pepe use, Furie drew a comic strip that depicted the frog’s death.