Kuruc.info

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Kuruc.info is a far-right Hungarian language online portal registered in the State of California, United States,[1] affiliated with politician Előd Novák.[2] The website often harbours extreme anti-semitic sentiments,[1], including frequent Holocaust denial[3], and frequently publishes anti-Romani and homophobic content.[4]

History[edit]

The first iteration of the website, kettosallampolgarsag.hu, was created to support the 2004 Hungarian dual citizenship referendum.[5] The website then illegally published the personal data of publicist Imre Para-Kovács[6]. As the website's focus broadened, and its traffic kept growing even after the referendum had ended, its editors decided to start Kuruc.info on 01 February 2006[5], named after the "Kuruc", the rebels against the Habsburg Monarchy who fought for Hungarian independence between 1671 and 1711.[7] Until 2019, Kuruc.info's staff was anonymous[2], and the website was registered in the name of a private individual, first in Scottsdale, Arizona[8], then Healdsburg, California.[1] The website first gained notoriety for its "more SZDSZ, more paedophiles" campaign before the 2006 Hungarian parliamentary election[9], which was also closely affiliated with the newly formed Jobbik party.[10] In 2006, Kuruc.info also posted photographs, addresses, and phone numbers of judges and prosecutors who had participated in legal proceedings against anti-government protestors.[11] Several of the officials whose details were posted received threatening phone calls and letters.[12] After this, the website still routinely published the personal data of individuals they opposed.[13]

In 2008, the web servers of Kuruc.info were shut down[14] after requests from the Hungarian government.[15]. However, the website quickly came back online.[8] In 2012, the Hungarian government requested the American government to shut the website down again without success.[16] Around the same time, it was revealed that the website was registered under the name of Bela Varga, a winemaker from Healdsburg, California[17] who denied his involvement with the website, claiming that he registered it for a friend.[18]

Although Kuruc.info was heavily associated with the Jobbik political party in its early days[9], it became increasingly critical of the party around 2016, mainly due to Jobbik's drift toward a more centre-right ideology, which was strongly opposed by the website's owner[2] and previous Jobbik vice president Előd Novák[19] This split, as well as the emergence of other far-right websites such as 888.hu and Pesti Srácok saw the website's popularity decline, dropping from the 34th most popular Hungarian website to 96th in the span of 4 years.[20][21] After years of denying his involvement with Kuruc.info[19], Előd Novák revealed his ownership of the website in 2019, as well as the involvement of ex-journalist József Hering, ex-MIÉP politician Tamás Esze, and publicist János Lantos.[2]

Political Ideology[edit]

Kuruc.info considers itself to be more right-wing than the far-right Hungarian political party known as the Jobbik, distinguishing itself from Barikád, which is regarded as Jobbik's "semi-official online news organ".[7]

Categories on the site include "anti-Hungarianism", "Gypsy-crime", "Jewish crime", "migrant crime", "economic news", where there is more discussion of the economic crimes of Jews and communists, and a "humor" section where one can find derogatory jokes about Jews, Romani, and communists. Users engage in commentary about the website's publications and maintain an active site forum.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Pine, Daniel (14 September 2012). "Anti-Semitic Hungarian website has ties to Healdsburg man". J. The Jewish News of Northern California. Retrieved 5 March 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d Ács, Dániel (2019-04-25). "13 év bujkálás után kiléptek a fényre, de a Fidesz-média mellett már nehezen rúgnak labdába". 444.hu (in Hungarian). Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  3. ^ "Nem tudják törölni a Kurucinfó holokauszttagadó rovatát" (in Hungarian). 168 óra. 2017-11-02. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  4. ^ Gergely, Nyilas (2018-06-13). "Elérhető lett az Országházból is a Kuruc.info". Index (in Hungarian). Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  5. ^ a b "Törvénysértő a Kuruc.info? Hol van a szervere? Kik szerkesztik? - Amit hírportálunkról tudni kell". kuruc.info. 2010-02-23. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  6. ^ "Uborkaszezoni szervercsaták". index.hu (in Hungarian). 2005-07-01. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  7. ^ a b c Molnár, V. (2016) Civil society, radicalism and the rediscovery of mythic nationalism. Nations and Nationalism, 22: 165–185. doi: 10.1111/nana.12126.
  8. ^ a b "Szilvásyék ezentúl is fellépnek a kuruc.info ellen" (in Hungarian). HVG. 2008-08-22. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  9. ^ a b "Törvénysértő a kuruc.info plakátja". index.hu (in Hungarian). 2006-04-09. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  10. ^ "„Több SZDSZ, több pedofil"" (in Hungarian). Háttér Társaság. 2006-04-06. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  11. ^ Bohus, Péter (2006-10-10). "Nemzetbiztonsági vizsgálat néhány név miatt". index.hu (in Hungarian). Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  12. ^ "Editor of extremist Web site indicted in Hungary". Jerusalem Post. 2008-12-03. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  13. ^ "A Bibó kollégium kiáll egyik hallgatója mellett" (in Hungarian). Népszabadság. 2008-05-12. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  14. ^ "Lekapcsolták a Kuruc.info főszerverét" (in Hungarian). HVG. 2008-07-05. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  15. ^ "Kormányzati kérésre állították le a kuruc.infót" (in Hungarian). HVG. 2008-07-21. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  16. ^ "Szorosra zárt ajtón dörömböl Washingtonban a kormány". origo.hu (in Hungarian). 2012-07-04. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  17. ^ "Bemutatjuk a kuruc.info tulajdonosát". atlatszo.hu (in Hungarian). 2012-09-04. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  18. ^ "Nem Varga bankszámlájára mennek a kuruc.info bevételei". index.hu (in Hungarian). 2012-09-09. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  19. ^ a b Tóth, Richi (2016-06-07). "Bilit is boríthat, pártot is szakíthat Novák Előd, akit soha senki nem tudott kontrollálni". 24.hu (in Hungarian). Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  20. ^ "A 100 legnézettebb hazai weboldal". prim.hu (in Hungarian). 2014-02-18. Retrieved 2019-08-22.
  21. ^ Szuhi, Attila (2018-10-17). "A legnézettebb hazai weboldalak rangsora 2018". ite.hu (in Hungarian). Retrieved 2019-08-22.