Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin said he stopped using event management and ticketing website Eventbrite after the company removed promotion for an event featuring former NCAA swimmer Riley Gaines.
During a Monday appearance on The Clay Travis and Buck Sexton Show, Youngkin criticized Eventbrite for removing promotion for an upcoming speech from Gaines, who has been an outspoken critic of biological males identifying as transgender women participating in women’s sports, at UC Davis this Friday.
According to Eventbrite, Gaines’ event, which will focus on the protection of women’s sports, violated the company’s “community guidelines.”
“When a company decides it’s going make statements on political and social issues, they have to live with the consequences, and the blowback here has been warranted,” Youngkin said.
— The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show (@clayandbuck) October 30, 2023
Youngkin also threw criticism toward the company for hosting pro-Hamas events on their platform.
“Eventbrite continues to carry events around Hamas, which is unbelievable, but then, on top of that, to proactively terminate an agreement with Riley is beyond belief,” Youngkin said. “And to say that they are trying to protect some group and not the other, I think, results in the kind of action that I’ve taken.”
The Virginia governor said “customers can fire” companies taking political stances and said that’s what he did with his decision to move away from Eventbrite.
Gaines thanked Youngkin for his comments in an X post.
“More of this,” she wrote. “On behalf of all sensible people, thank you for your stance!”
More of this👏🏼
— Riley Gaines (@Riley_Gaines_) October 30, 2023
Eventbrite’s letter to Gaines criticized her event for targeting individuals.
“Specifically, we do not allow content or events that – through on-or off-platform activity – discriminate against, harass, disparage, threaten, incite violence against, or otherwise target individuals or groups based on their actual or perceived race, ethnicity, religion, national origin, immigration status, gender identity, sexual orientation, veteran status, age, or disability,” the company wrote. “As a result, your event has been unpublished. Please be aware that severe or repeated violations of our guidelines may result in the suspension or termination of your Eventbrite account.”
Eventbrite recently hosted promotion for pro-Hamas events in the wake of the Islamic militant group’s attack on Israel in October. One event titled “Stop the Genocide! Free Palestine!” was reportedly removed from the platform.
“Early on Saturday, October 7th, Palestinian resistance fighters broke through Israel’s siege of Gaza,” the aforementioned event description read. “This panel will explore the historical context that led to the current moment, the dynamics currently at play, and the possibilities for building international solidarity for Palestinian liberation.”