Freedom Convoy 2022 (Ottawa)

GoFundMe

GoFundMe freezes accounts of Canadian trucker convoy protest: Canadian Truckers holding the Freedom Convoy to Ottawa 2022 protest used online fundraising platform GoFundMe to raise money for the fuel and food of participating truckers. Canada's CTV News reported that the protesters raised $4.5 million before GoFundMe began regulating the release of funds. Rachel Hollis, a spokesperson for GoFundMe told CTV that “[f]unds will be safely held until the organizer is able to provide the documentation to our team about how funds will be properly distributed.” She explained that the hold was due to a terms of service transparency requirement. The platform released $1 million to the group after a transparency plan was presented but then suspended the account after the fundraiser reached $10.1 million, according to CTV. Screenshots show that the fundraiser is "paused and under review to ensure it complies with [Go Fund Me's] terms of service and applicable laws and regulations. The Post Millennial reported, that the pause occurred on February 2, and that later that day Ottawa City Councilor Diane Deans suggested a lawsuit and cease and desist order asking GoFundMe to hold the funds indefinitely. GoFundMe later closed the fundraiser, initially saying that funds would be diverted to other charities, but ultimately caving in to complaints about this potential action and agreeing to refund all donations.