That is the question.
Most of you…well, most of you who are reading this…and that may be only two (including me)…realize that we’re in the middle of a cultural revolution. Especially after the dumpster fire of an election which saw the coronation of a demented fossil and a morals-challenged harpy (no, I’m not talking to you, Hillary. This time). This is made worse by the fact that we can’t trust most of what we see anymore, anywhere (and, yes, Fox News, I AM talking to you).
For the first time since I’ve been alive, I worry that those platforms to which I turn for news and information will no longer be available. I’m afraid they’ll disappear from view because of absurd canards such as “racism,” “bigotry,” “hatred, or “Orange Man Bad.” The unbelievably ignorant and stupid (sometimes, these are the same people) would have you believe there is no difference.
Add that “Black Lives Matter” has been nominated for a Nobel Peace Peace (a…Nobel…Peace…Prize) and it’s clear the lunatics have grabbed hold of the asylum.
While I could devote an entire column to the entirety of the shitshow unfolding around us, I’ll concentrate on just one part of the overall “shitshowedness” (not a real word): that of social media.
In the lead-up to the freak show of Election Day, social media giants such as Twitter, Facebook, and You Tube were squelching free speech. They refused to publish anything which they deemed an affront to their “community standards.” From refusing to acknowledge Hunter Biden’s peccadilloes (I’m positive that had I tried putting those three words on Facebook, I’d be banned) to anything which questioned the legitimacy of said demented fossil as president. My Facebook account was even suspended for some unknown offense (which occurred in January…2019) and again last month, for what I have no clue.
Twitter had become a cesspool of hate, despair, and overall “butthurtedness” (once more, not a real word). CEO Jack Dorsey (who looks like he’s auditioning for a biopic on Rasputin) piously complained that he wants Twitter to protect the innocent from evil thought. What a goof that only conservative thought was affected while at the same time BLM, ANTIFA, and the mullahs in Iran continue to bloviate their vitriol.
You Tube has its own issues, as well. They’ve deplatformed Rudy Giuliani and demonetized other voices whom they found offensive.
In response to these infringements on the First Amendment, I deleted my account at Twitter. No loss, all the acid over there gave me angina. And I’m getting to be too old to have angina.
You Tube? Yeah, I probably should have nothing to do with those guys, either. But, I like the videos, especially the Critical Drinker Movie Reviews and “Everything Wrong With [insert movie title here].” Those things are a hoot. To say nothing of all the bitching about Game of Thrones.
Apparently, Rumble is a good alternative. I’ll probably end up over there eventually.
As far as Facebook, I’ve cut down on my posting over there substantially. While I would dearly love to cut ties with Zuckerberg’s monster, I really can’t at this time. Too many of my family and friends use Facebook to pass important information. For instance, were it not for Facebook, I would never have learned that my best friend’s mother had passed away.
So, I’ll be staying with Facebook for a little while, at least. But, I won’t be posting anything which could even remotely be considered controversial.
And that’s a damn shame. We need civil discourse if we’re to avoid devolving into a dystopian nightmare (tragically, there are those among us, thankfully a minority, who cheer this very same thing on).
As far as whether I think these platforms should have the right to restrict what is posted, I most definitely think they do. They are private enterprises, after all. But…but, there is no way that they should be protected by the government for what they do. Do we really want a Red, White, and Blue Pravda?
Remove the protections…alrighty then. We’ll be on our way.
So, it was with the mass defection from Facebook and Twitter for the likes of MeWe and Parler. Only, the bastards who want to shut us up followed us there.
Parler became a refuge for those disgusted by Twitter. Even though there were some hateful postings and it wasn’t nearly as user-friendly as Twitter, I felt that people like me had a place to go. I even welcomed those liberals who participated. I did not want a conservative echo chamber. How boring would that be?
Those posts which called for outright violence (I don’t recall seeing any, but I wouldn’t be surprised if there were) were immediately taken down by Parler. However, that wasn’t good enough for Amazon, who denied Parler the ability to use its servers.
As of this writing, Parler hasn’t returned.
However, I’ve found something called “Gab.” Very Twitter-like, it so far hasn’t succumbed to the scolding harridans of the Internet. In fact, I find that navigating around Gab is quite a bit easier than on Parler. I’ve actually had conversations with people, which I didn’t really with Parler.
We’ll see what happens when Parler, as it eventually will, returns.
As far as an alternative to Facebook, I’ve turned to MeWe. So far, it appears to be an adequate alternative. Like with Parler (and Gab), it also counts those who do not have a conservative bent among its subscribers. I welcome this as, like with the other services, a “hallelujah chorus” would get way boring.
MeWe, while not completely the same as Facebook, is growing. It still doesn’t have the reach as Facebook, but I’m convinced this will not last forever.
I believe that, the more people use MeWe, the more they’ll get used to it. And the more they get used to it, the more they’ll use it. It reminds me of the time when Facebook first appeared. It was competing with another personal interaction site, MySpace. Of course, over time, Facebook surged and overcame its challenger. Even though I initially had a MySpace account, I decided to give that Facebook thing a try.
On a related note, I also owned a Beta VCR which competed with VHS. And, we all know how that turned out. Before they both ended up on business’ trash heap.
Are there objectionable things on MeWe? Things that offend me? Absolutely. But, here’s the thing. No post that I’ve read called for outright violence, setting things on fire, or destroying things like, say, Israel.
Plus, and much more importantly, I am a grown-up. If I don’t like something, I scroll right on by. I don’t feel the need to squeal to a corporate Mrs. Kravitz.
My point is that platforms such as MeWe, Gab, Rumble (and eventually Parler) will thrive the more folks get comfortable with them.
NOTE: These sites are completely free, despite what you may see (or have heard). I know, for instance, that MeWe offers subscribers some sort of “Premium Membership” for a price. Frankly, though, I’m satisfied what with I can do. If I am ever called upon to pay for what is now free, yeah, won’t be doing that.
If, and in the age of Idiot Joe and Chlamydia Kamala, that’s a big if, they are allowed to be.
If any of you have read this, much less gotten this far, my contact information is:
MeWe- Kenneth Charles
Gab- Kenneth Charles
I’m also on Instagram (yes, yes, I know it’s owned by Facebook…baby steps, baby steps)- mop_savant
Facebook- Kenneth Charles