Peloton, a company known for Internet-connected bicycles and treadmills, is dabbling in the Stop The Steal chaos. The company now prohibits users from creating the #StopTheSteal tag in the app, saying that the tag will not “comply with our guidelines” when users create it. Peloton’s Community Guidelines explicitly prohibit “hate, offensive and obscene speech” as well as “bullying, harassment and other offensive behavior”. We have further clarified when Peloton started blocking this tag and why.
The label on Peloton is used as a community identifier. When people join a tag, the tag will be displayed on the company leaderboard during exercise and can socialize with other members of the tag. Anyone can create tags, and new tags will pop up based on the #StopTheSteal ban. The groups #StopTheSteall, #StopTheSteel, #StopTheCensorship and #StopTheFraud are all marked as “new”
This is not the first time Peloton has banned the use of potentially inflammatory phrases. Last year, the company banned its official Facebook groups and QAnon-related tags from conducting political conversations, and provided the same community guidelines information. Although the app does not allow real-time chats with other people in the class, these tags still share specific messages. The #BlueLivesMatter and #BlackLivesMatter tags are still allowed in the app.
Other technology companies have also taken action to limit the coverage of this hashtag. Instagram allows hashtags to exist on the platform, but only displays “top” posts, not the latest posts.