LiveLeak, the controversial British video-sharing website, headquartered in London, has officially shut down.
The infamous platform, notorious for its violet and disturbing content including the beheading of US journalist James Foley and the execution of Saddam Hussein, has been taken down after almost 15 years.
The site was founded on 31 October 2006, in part by the team behind the Ogrish.com shock site which closed on the same day. LiveLeak reportedly aimed to freely host real footage of politics, war, and many other world events and to encourage and foster a culture of citizen journalism. The site hosted uncensored footage of content that wouldn’t be allowed on sites such as YouTube and became a sort of breeding ground for conspiracy theories. In essence, LiveLeak offered convenient access to the very worst of humanity all in one place.
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Hayden Hewitt of Manchester, the only public member of LiveLeak’s founding team, posted a statement on LiveLeak’s replacement video sharing site, ItemFix in which he wrote: “The last fifteen years have been an insane rollercoaster for all involved. The thing is, it’s never been less than exhilarating, challenging and something we were all fully committed to. Nothing lasts forever though and – as we did all those years ago – we felt LiveLeak had achieved all that it could and it was time for us to try something new and exciting,” the statement reads.
“The world has changed a lot over these last few years, the Internet alongside it, and we as people,” he adds. “I’m sat here now writing this with a mixture of sorrow because LL has been not just a website or business but a way of life for me and many of the guys but also genuine excitement at what’s next.”
“Whilst I know many of you will be upset, possibly angry, about our decision I do hope you also understand our reasons and appreciate that, alongside you, we have walked together through some interesting times and some crazy ones. Sometimes it’s just the right time to chart a new path.”
ItemFix is described as a site “for creativity and fun”, which explicitly bans content including “sensitive media” such as excessive violence or gore, as well as any hate content. “It’s something completely different,” Hewitt writes, “completely fresh, and something we feel energized about tackling.”
Visit ItemFix for more information and find more trending content, right here.