PayPal has reinstated the accounts of the Free Speech Union, a few days after leading British MPs called the ban an "orchestrated, politically-motivated move."
Accounts from the Free Speech Union (FSU) and the Daily Sceptic blog, which were frozen by Paypal without a clear explanation earlier this month have now been restored, according to its founder Toby Young.
'Offer Our Apologies'Writing in The Spectator, where he is associate editor, Young confirmed the news and added that he received an apology from PayPal.
“We have continued to review the information provided in connection with your account and we take seriously the input from our customers and stakeholders. Based on these ongoing reviews, we have made the decision to reinstate your account. You should now be able to use your account in the normal way. We sincerely appreciate your business and offer our apologies for any inconvenience this disruption in service may have caused," wrote PayPal.
"It goes without saying that I won’t be using PayPal’s services again," said Young.
The cancellation of the FSU’s account presented a challenge for the organisation as about a third of the FSU’s 9,500 members used PayPal to process their membership fees.
'Legislative Safeguards'Leading political figures had waded into the row. The UK’s former Brexit minister and FSU Advisory Council member Lord David Frost wrote on Twitter on Sept. 21 that PayPal’s decision to close the accounts was a “very worrying development.”
They said that it's “hard to avoid construing PayPal’s actions as an orchestrated, politically-motivated move to silence critical or dissenting views on these topics within the UK."
Young started the FSU in 2020 to support self-styled defenders of free expression. In the same year, Young also started The Daily Sceptic a successor to Lockdown Sceptics, to challenge science-based stories that “often appear to be rooted in a covert political agenda” such as lockdown policy, COVID-19 restrictions, the efficacy and safety of the mRNA vaccines, and net zero emissions.