Parler Speedruns The Content Moderation Learning Curve; Goes From 'We Allow Everything' To 'We're The Good Censors' In Days

from the nice-one-guys dept

Over the last few weeks Parler has become the talk of Trumpist land, with promises of a social media site that "supports free speech." The front page of the site insists that its content moderation is based on the standards of the FCC and the Supreme Court of the United States:

Of course, that's nonsensical. The FCC's regulations on speech do not apply to the internet, but just to broadcast television and radio over public spectrum. And, of course, the Supreme Court's well-established parameters for 1st Amendment protected speech have been laid out pretty directly over the last century or so, but the way this is written they make it sound like any content to be moderated on Parler will first be reviewed by the Supreme Court, and that's not how any of this works. Indeed, under Supreme Court precedent, very little speech is outside of the 1st Amendment these days, and we pointed out that Parler's terms of service did not reflect much understanding of the nuances of Supreme Court jurisprudence on the 1st Amendment. Rather, it appeared to demonstrate the level of knowledge of a 20-something tech bro skimming a Wikipedia article about exceptions to the 1st Amendment and just grabbing the section headings without bothering to read the details (or talk to a 1st Amendment lawyer).

Besides, as we pointed out, Parler's terms of service allow them to ban users or content for any reason whatsoever -- suggesting they didn't have much conviction behind their "we only moderate based on the FCC and the Supreme Court." Elsewhere, Parler's CEO says that "if you can say it on the street of New York, you can say it on Parler." Or this nugget of nonsense:

“They can make any claim they’d like, but they’re going to be met with a lot of commenters, a lot of people who are going to disagree with them,” Matze said. “That’s how society works, right? If you make a claim, people are going to come and fact check you organically.”

“You don’t need an editorial board of experts to determine what’s true and what’s not,” he added. “The First Amendment was given to us so that we could all talk about issues, not have a single point of authority to determine what is correct and what’s not.”

Ah.

So, anyway, on Monday, we noted that Parler was actually banning a ton of users for a wide variety of reasons -- most of which could be labeled simply as "trolling Parler." People were going on to Parler to see what it would take to get themselves banned. This is trolling. And Parler banned a bunch of them. That resulted in Parler's CEO, John Matze, putting out a statement about other things that are banned on Parler:

If you can't read that, here's what he says, with some annotations:

To the people complaining on Twitter about being banned on Parler. Please pay heed:

Literally no one is "complaining" about being banned on Parler. They're mocking Parler for not living up to it's pretend goals of only banning you for speech outside of 1st Amendment protections.

Here are the very few basic rules we need you to follow on Parler. If these are not to your liking, we apologize, but we will enforce:

Good for you. It's important to recognize -- just as we said -- that any website that hosts 3rd party content will eventually have to come up with some plan to enforce some level of content moderation. You claimed you wouldn't do that. Indeed, just days earlier you had said that people could "make any claim they'd like" and also that you were going to follow the Supreme Court's limits on the 1st Amendment, not your own content moderation rules.

When you disagree with someone, posting pictures of your fecal matter in the comment section WILL NOT BE TOLERATED

So, a couple thoughts on this. First of all, I get that Matze is trying to be funny here, but this is not that. All it really does is suggest that he's been owned by a bunch of trolls posting shit pics. Also, um, contractually, this seems to mean it's okay to post pictures of other people's fecal matter. Might want to have a lawyer review this shit, John.

Also, more importantly, I've spent a few hours digging through Supreme Court precedents regarding the 1st Amendment and I've failed to find the ruling that says that posting a picture of your shit violates the 1st Amendment. I mean, I get that it's not nice. But, I was assured by Parler that it was ruled by Supreme Court precedent.

Your Username cannot be obscene like "CumDumpster"

Again, my litany of legal scholars failed to turn up the Supreme Court precedent on this.

No pornography. Doesn't matter who, what, where, when, or in what realm.

Thing is, most pornography is very much protected under the 1st Amendment as interpreted by the Supreme Court of the United States. So again, we see that Parler's rules are not as initially stated.

We will not allow you to spam other people trying to speak, with unrelated comments like "Fuck you" in every comment. It's stupid. It's pointless, Grow up.

I agree that it's stupid and that people should grow up, but this is the kind of thing that every other internet platform either recognizes from the beginning or learns really quickly: you're going to have some immature trolls show up and you need to figure out how you want to deal with them. But those spammers' and trolls' speech is, again (I feel like I'm repeating myself) very much protected by the 1st Amendment.

You cannot threaten to kill anyone in the comment section. Sorry, never ever going to be okay.

Again, this is very context dependent, and, despite Matze saying that he won't employ any of those annoying "experts" to determine what is and what is not allowed, figuring out what is a "true threat" under the Supreme Court's precedent usually requires at least some experts who understand how true threats actually work.

But, honestly, this whole thing is reminiscent of any other website that hosts 3rd party content learning about content moderation. It's just that in Parler's case, because it called attention to the claims that it would not moderate, it's having to go through the learning curve in record time. Remember, in the early days, Twitter called itself "the free speech wing of the free speech party." And then it started filling with spam, abuse, and harassment. And terrorists. And things got tricky. Or, Facebook. As its first content policy person, Dave Willner, said at a conference a few years ago, Facebook's original content moderation policy was "does it make us feel icky?" And if it did, it got taken down. But that doesn't work.

And, of course, as these platforms became bigger and more powerful, the challenges became thornier and more and more complicated. A few years ago, Breitbart went on an extended rampage because Google had created an internal document struggling over the biggest issues in content moderation, in which it included a line about "the good censor". For months afterwards, all of the Trumpist/Breitbart crew was screaming about "the good censor" and how tech believed its job was to censor conservatives (which is not what the document actually said). It was just an analysis of all the varied challenges in content moderation, and how to set up policies that are fair and reasonable.

Parler seems to be going through this growth process in the course of about a week. First it was "hey free speech for everyone." Then they suddenly start realizing that that doesn't actually work -- especially when people start trolling you. So, they start ad libbing. Right now, Parler's policy seems more akin to Facebook's "does it make us feel icky" standard, though tuned more towards its current base: so "does upset the Trumpists who are now celebrating the platform." That's a policy. It's not "we only moderate based on the 1st Amendment." And it's not "free speech supportive." It's also not scaleable.

So people get banned and perhaps for good reason. Here's the single message that got Ed Bott banned:

I don't see how that violates any of the so far stated rules of Parler, but it's violating one of the many unwritten rules: Parler doesn't like it if you make fun of Parler. Which is that company's choice of course. I will note, just in passing, that that is significantly more restrictive than Twitter, which has tons of people mocking Twitter every damn day, and I've yet to hear of a single case of anyone being banned from Twitter for mocking Twitter. Honestly, if you were to compare the two sites, one could make a very strong case that Twitter is way more willing to host speech than Parler is considering its current policies.

Should Parler ever actually grow bigger, it might follow the path of every other social media platform out there and institute more thorough rules, policies, and procedures regarding content moderation. But, of course, that makes it just like every other social media platform out there, though it might draw the lines differently. And, as I've said through all these posts (contrary to the attacks that have been launched at me the last few days), I'm very happy that Parler exists. I want there to be more competition to today's social media sites. I want there to be more experimentation. And I'm truly hopeful that some of them succeed. That's how innovation works.

I just don't like it when they're totally hypocritical. Indeed, it seems that Parler's CEO Matze has now decided that rather than being supportive of the 1st Amendment, and rather than being supportive of what you can say on a NY street (say, in a protest of police brutality), anyone who supports Antifa is not allowed on Parler:

I'm not quite clear on what Parler policy (or 1st Amendment exception) "Antifa supporter" falls under, but hey, I don't make the rules.

In the meantime, it's been fun to watch Parler's small group of rabid supporters try to continue to justify the site's misleading claims. A bunch keep screaming at me the falsehood that Parler supports any 1st Amendment protected free speech. Others insist that "of course" that doesn't apply to assholes (the famed "asshole corollary" to Supreme Court 1A doctrine, I guess). But, honestly, my favorite was this former Fox News reporter who now writes for Mediaite -- who spent a couple days insisting that everyone making fun of Parler's hypocrisy were somehow "mad" at being kicked off Parler -- who decided to just straight up say that Parler is good because it does the right kind of banning. You see, Parler is the good censor:

And, thus, we're right back to "the good censor." Except that when the Google document used that phrase, it used it to discuss the impossible tradeoffs of moderation, not to embrace the role. Yet here, a Parler fan is embracing this role that is entirely opposite of the site's public statements. Somehow, I get the feeling that the Breitbart/Trumpist crew isn't going to react the same way to Parler becoming "the good censor" as it did to a Google document that just highlighted the impossible challenges of content moderation.

And, look, if Parler had come out and said that from the beginning, cool. That's a choice. No one would be pointing out any hypocrisy if they just said that they wanted to create a safe space for aggrieved Trump fans. Instead, the site is trying to have it both ways: still claiming it's supportive of 1st Amendment rules, while simultaneously ramping up its somewhat arbitrary banning process. Of course, what's hilarious is that many of its supporters keep insisting that their real complaint with Twitter is that its content moderation is "arbitrary" or "unevenly applied." The fact that the same thing is now true of Parler seems blocked from entering their brains by the great cosmic cognitive dissonance shield.

The only issue that people are pointing out is that Parler shouldn't have been so cavalier in hanging its entire identity on "we don't moderate, except as required by law." And hopefully it's a lesson to other platforms as well. Content moderation happens. You can't avoid it. Pretending that you can brush it off with vague platitudes about free speech doesn't work. And it's better to understand that from the beginning rather than look as foolish as Parler just as everyone's attention turns your way.

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Filed Under: arbitrary, content moderation, content moderation at scale, john matze, rules, terms, the good censor
Companies: parler


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  • icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 10:54am

    I gotta wonder if this speedrun was human-performed or tool-assisted, because damn that was quick as hell.

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  • icon
    Koby (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:16am

    Good for you. It's important to recognize -- just as we said -- that any website that hosts 3rd party content will eventually have to come up with some plan to enforce some level of content moderation. You claimed you wouldn't do that.

    Fortunately, it sounds like the plan is to do what I've been suggesting all along: remove profanity, pornography, and threats of violence, while staying neutral on the political arguments.

    I'm detecting a lot of animosity towards such a platform. Wierd!

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    • icon
      aerinai (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:19am

      Re:

      if you read the article, the animosity is towards their hypocrisy and them trying to lie about their moderation standards... they said if it is legal under the first amendment, then it is fair game... except if you make fun of us, or make other speech we don't like... you know... the exact same thing they are bitching about Twitter for doing...

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    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:25am

      it sounds like the plan is to do what I've been suggesting all along: remove profanity, pornography, and threats of violence, while staying neutral on the political arguments

      Parler’s CEO implied that anti-fascists (“antifa”) aren’t welcome on Parler. Anti-fascism is a political ideology. Ergo, Parler stopped being “neutral” on politics once that post by Matze went live.

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    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:36am

      Re:

      Fortunately, it sounds like the plan is to do what I've been suggesting all along: remove profanity, pornography, and threats of violence, while staying neutral on the political arguments.

      Lol. This is literally not what Parler is doing. And you'd be amazed at how quickly debates about "profanity, pornography, and violence" turn into political arguments.

      But literally in this post, we pointed out that Parler is saying people who are against fascism are not welcome. That's a political stand.

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      • icon
        Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:41am

        you'd be amazed at how quickly debates about "profanity, pornography, and violence" turn into political arguments

        To wit: Look at all the discussions about “mainstream” payment processors (e.g., PayPal) and their…hesistation to work with adult content providers of any kind.

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      • icon
        Koby (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 12:07pm

        Re: Re:

        But literally in this post, we pointed out that Parler is saying people who are against fascism are not welcome. That's a political stand.

        The message about Antifa doesn't say that they're not welcome. It simply says that their chat server was open and that he was able to see what they were plotting. That's not a political stand.

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        • icon
          Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 12:15pm

          The message about Antifa doesn't say that they're not welcome.

          The phrase “your VPNs can’t save you” reads like an admission that Parler’s admins both know anti-fascists are using VPNs to make multiple sign-ups on Parler and have plans to do something about it. Given how the Parler userbase seems inclined to support Donald Trump, and given how Trump has said plenty of nasty things about “ANTIFA”, I’d wager that any positive discussion of anti-fascism on Parler will not be met with reasoned discourse — by the users or the admins.

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          • icon
            Koby (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 12:34pm

            Re:

            are using VPNs to make multiple sign-ups on Parler and have plans to do something about it.

            No doubt that's what they were planning. And that's not a political stand.

            I’d wager that any positive discussion of anti-fascism on Parler will not be met with reasoned discourse — by the users or the admins

            Similar to how conservatives have been able to demonstrate their posts for which they were unfairly censored, I expect left wingers to react in a similar manner the moment it occurs. I'll be waiting if it does.

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            • icon
              Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 12:44pm

              that's not a political stand

              Explicitly calling out people with a specific socio-political ideology (e.g., anti-fascists) for breaking a rule or is a “political stand”. I don’t see the Parler admins calling out Trump supporters for using VPNs. Do you?

              Similar to how conservatives have been able to demonstrate their posts for which they were unfairly censored, I expect left wingers to react in a similar manner the moment it occurs.

              Two things.

              1. People getting their shit banned from Twitter ≠ censorship.

              2. Since you’ve heavily implied that you believe social media services should be forced by law to host all legally protected speech regardless of how a service’s admins feel about it, shouldn’t you be on board with the idea that Parler can’t/shouldn’t delete political speech with which its admins disagree?

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              • icon
                Koby (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:29pm

                Re:

                I don’t see the Parler admins calling out Trump supporters for using VPNs. Do you?

                I don't see Trump supporters coordinating account signups, creating a profile that impersonates, posting profanity or pornography, getting banned, and then trying to use a VPN to create a new account. If they do, then I'm sure there will be a callout.

                shouldn’t you be on board with the idea that Parler can’t/shouldn’t delete political speech with which its admins disagree?

                I am totally on board, and it looks like that's what Parler is going to attempt. I can't say whether it will succeed, but I certainly like the concept. If anyone does get their political speech deleted, I bet there will be a screenshot and a discussion of it. Although it's very early in its existence, I'm encouraged that it hasn't happened yet, even in the face of the trolling activity.

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                • icon
                  Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:36pm

                  I am totally on board

                  You seem on board with a voluntary adoption of such a policy. You’ve implied in the past that you think the law should force services to adopt such a policy. So I have One Simple Question for you: If Parler’s owners don’t want to host certain kinds of legally protected speech for any reason, should the law force Parler to host that speech?

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:32pm

                  Re: Re:

                  So, breaking the rules is justification for a ban for left wing voices, but is political bias when used against right wing voices. What do you really want, a one party fascists state?

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                  • icon
                    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:37pm

                    You should know by now that Koby hates answering yes-or-no questions — especially ones that would expose their political leanings.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
                    identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 6:06pm

                    Re: Re: Re:

                    "I'm not a fan of conservatives," simpered Koby, "But if Donald Trump asked me if he could get me pregnant I'd be first in line to have a womb surgically grafted between my legs."

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            • icon
              Mike Masnick (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:30pm

              Re: Re:

              And that's not a political stand.

              This from the person who keeps insisting that Twitter's non-political rules against hate and abuse are political.

              Koby, you apply very very different rules to your friends.

              Similar to how conservatives have been able to demonstrate their posts for which they were unfairly censored, I expect left wingers to react in a similar manner the moment it occurs. I'll be waiting if it does.

              Again, people across the political spectrum have complained about moderation on various platforms. Just because you're stuck in your filter bubble, doesn't mean it hasn't happened. Plenty of black women were banned from Facebook for highlighting racism that was thrown at them. But you don't know that because you live in your own little world.

              And no one gives a shit if Parler did ban all "left wingers." People just want them to be honest about it. But, as with you, that appears to be asking too much.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • icon
              That One Guy (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:40pm

              Re: Re:

              Similar to how conservatives have been able to demonstrate their posts for which they were unfairly censored

              Really now, do you happen to have any citations for that claim?

              I expect left wingers to react in a similar manner the moment it occurs. I'll be waiting if it does.

              Wait no longer then, the article that you either didn't read or immediately forgot included an example of just that, and if you clicked on that link it led to a Twitter... thread?... whatever they're called that included a second one. The two statements that got bans were 'let's see how long it takes the shitheels running this toilet to kick me out' by Ed Bott, and a picture of a cartoon cow holding a sign with 'Devin is a loser' by therealdevincow

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:35pm

              Re: Re:

              Show me these posts. Show me these conservatives who are banned for being conservative. For bonus points, show me why these putative banning victims were selected out of the millions of vocal conservatives who aren't banned.

              Still waiting on this.

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            • icon
              JMT (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 7:22pm

              Re: Re:

              "Similar to how conservatives have been able to demonstrate their posts for which they were unfairly censored..."

              No they haven't.

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            • icon
              PaulT (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:21pm

              Re: Re:

              "conservatives have been able to demonstrate"

              Yet when asked for the demonstrative proof you always run away from the thread... Why is that, I wonder?

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            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Jul 2020 @ 7:17am

              Re: Re:

              "Similar to how conservatives have been able to demonstrate their posts for which they were unfairly censored, I expect left wingers to react in a similar manner the moment it occurs."

              Antifa - anti-fascism - isn't "left-wing". Not unless you're making the argument that fascism is an inherently right-wing stance.

              And Koby, if you think for even a second that being against fascism is a left/right political stance then that tells us volumes about you already. Either that you are casually ignorant or something worse.

              And conservatives haven't been able to demonstrate any form of anti-conservative bias. Bigotry, racism and fascism, certainly. Let me know when you think "Conservative" became a viable word to use for actual dictionary-definition nazis, anti-semites and the KKK. Because THAT is what most platforms have been biased against.

              And one major issue facing the GOP right now appears to be that they are loath to separate themselves from the open racists in their ranks because if they admit that THAT is the type of speech the platforms moderate away then they'll have to relinquish the idea that they're somehow being suppressed.

              I'm sorry to have to rain on your parade Koby but unless you can make us all accept that it's a core conservative value to call black people n_ggers, advocate 18th-century long-debunked eugenics, and advocate forced brainwashing of non-heterosexual people...
              ...you're not making a good argument here.

              In fact it's not an argument I think you should want to make either but it's way past time you self-styled conservatives finally stopped hemming and hawing about it.

              It's ironic that todays conservatives keep falling all over themselves to portray themselves as collectivist xenophobes whereas the conservatives from yesteryear advocated individual liberties - liberalism. Something they appear to hate with unholy passion today.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                bhull242 (profile), 6 Jul 2020 @ 9:06am

                Re: Re: Re:

                Antifa - anti-fascism - isn't "left-wing". Not unless you're making the argument that fascism is an inherently right-wing stance.

                Technically, fascism is an inherently right-wing stance. It’s actually the most extreme end of right-wing stances. That’s not to say that anti-fascism is necessarily left-wing per se or that all right-wingers inherently support fascism, but fascism is a right-wing ideology.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 12:32am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  "Technically, fascism is an inherently right-wing stance."

                  Fascism actually doesn't fit on the right-left scale at all, given that it's a mechanism heavily employed in both extreme right but more often extreme left. It's more often associated with right wing extremism simply thanks to Mussolini - but I'd argue that any communist dictatorship in the last century fits the same criteria.

                  Because the concept that the individual is worthless in the face of collectivist majority, the corporation is the state, and civil rights are considered less important than the "greater good" is the natural outcome of going to either end as long as you push far enough to either left or right.

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                  • icon
                    bhull242 (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 9:39am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    No, you’re talking about totalitarianism. Fascism is the extreme far right, and communism is the extreme far left. Both share totalitarianism and, in many cases, populism and patriotism as means to their respective ends, and they are actually more similar to each other in practice than they are to the moderate left and moderate right (much like the two ends of a horseshoe are closer to each other than they are to the center), but they are still on opposite ends of the spectrum.

                    Now, if we were to go to a 2D model that allows for libertarianism and does go off the traditional left-right model, you would have two other extremes: collectivism and anarchy. But fascism is on the 1D spectrum just fine.

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                    • icon
                      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Jul 2020 @ 5:59am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      "Fascism is the extreme far right, and communism is the extreme far left."

                      I hold there is little difference.

                      In fascism the corporations own the state. In Communism the state owns the corporations. Both cases lead to the exact same result.

                      The only difference I can see is that Lenin and Staling made classical soviet-style communism the keyword for their particular brand of collectivist totalitarianism whereas mussolini called the exact same mechanism of collectivist totalitarianism "fascism".

                      When advocating either you don't even need to switch the keywords around. You can exchange stalins pep talks about unity and the common good for Hitlers and the crowd won't notice.

                      "...much like the two ends of a horseshoe are closer to each other than they are to the center"

                      It's a full circle, not a horseshoe. That's why you end up in classic collectivism as long as you go far enough either way. And why the classical nazi policies fit any sufficiently extreme endpoint whether it's left or right.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                      • icon
                        Uriel-238 (profile), 8 Jul 2020 @ 2:40pm

                        Fascism vs. Communism

                        The problem here is we haven't actually seen communism (that is, a purely de-stratified, classless, egalitarian nation) in action. What we've seen are proto-states intended to transition into a communist state sometime in the future, provisional authoritarian governments that get corrupted into a stratified feudal state along the way. And like student loans in the US, these temporary administrations ultimately reveal themselves to be permanent, assured to last centuries before they change.

                        So the political spectrum models we have are broken, and never revealed to be representative of living history. Marx had an idea of what the end should look like. Marx didn't have a clear idea of how to get there.

                        Contrast the framers of the US Constitution, who took some basic first steps away from Constitutional monarchy towards a Constitutional republic (or representative democracy) but did not chart a path to true liberty, where all persons (women, slaves, non-land-owners) were genuinely free, and whose interests were represented in the government. (In fact, it was hacked within the first century by plutocratic industrialists.)

                        So when we talk about Communism as an authoritarian state, we're talking about it sarcastically. Fascism intends to be a dictatorship and endorses the advantages of dictatorship. (Fast, decisive action, usually). Communism ultimately intends to be a system with no hierarchy, where wealth and power are evenly distributed to the people. (How it does that and sustains that, and can still govern is not made clear in Marxist / Leninist models.)

                        The politburo of the Soviet Union was always claimed to be a temporary installation. And China <looking it up> also has a politburo and a national congress that convenes every fifth year, and the party continues under the pretense that China has not achieved the main sequence a communist state. So all its efforts to suppress speech and information and arrest enemies of the Party are indicative of the rising corrupted institution, not movement towards actual communist China. As a communist regime, it's failing already, and is turning towards embracing authoritarianism.

                        So, we can't really argue communism is authoritarian like fascism, as hypothetically it isn't. We can assume that "communism" (in scare quotes) as it has manifested in the real world is really an authoritarian state, but it represents communism much the way the DPRK and the DDR (or the USA) represent democracy.

                        Maybe our nations should develop some humility, and insert qualifiers into their forms of government: Provisional communist administration or failing democracy. Here in the States we still in the Trump era, teach our kids elected representatives will stand for the interests of their constituents.

                        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                      • icon
                        bhull242 (profile), 13 Jul 2020 @ 3:20pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        That doesn’t change the fact that fascism is far-right by the current definition of both terms in political science and that there is a difference between fascism and communism. The traits they have in common/where they meet is totalitarianism. Whether you think that difference is strong or weak is immaterial to my arguments.

                        Really, we’re just arguing semantics here.

                        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Uriel-238 (profile), 6 Jul 2020 @ 1:01pm

                Right wing / Left wing and Fascism

                The left - right system comes from a tradition of monarchy where (in general, or regarding the subject at hand) those who concurred with the king would sit in the parliament to his right, and those who disagreed with the king would sit to his left. So left and right emerged from there to represent positions in regard to the status quo or the opinion of the leader (prime minister, president, grand speaker, whoever.)

                Fascism is a pro-establishment state that drives support by demagogic methods that appeal to the lumpenproletariat and the precariat.

                Specifically, going to war because reasons, and dispensing with undesirables because it's their fault.

                So yeah, usually fascism is an endgame while plutocrats fill their coffers from collected taxes and looted detainees hoping to escape before either the people catch on or the Soviets roll into Berlin.

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                • icon
                  Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 12:43am

                  Re: Right wing / Left wing and Fascism

                  "...usually fascism is an endgame while plutocrats fill their coffers from collected taxes and looted detainees hoping to escape before either the people catch on or the Soviets roll into Berlin."

                  Or the perpetual state of stalin's soviet or mussolini's italy.

                  Or today's China.

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                  • icon
                    bhull242 (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 9:41am

                    Re: Re: Right wing / Left wing and Fascism

                    Fascists have a strong history of hating communism. Again, you’re confusing fascism with totalitarianism.

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                    • icon
                      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Jul 2020 @ 6:05am

                      Re: Re: Re: Right wing / Left wing and Fascism

                      "Fascists have a strong history of hating communism."

                      Mainly because the extreme end of communism is fascism.
                      As i stated earlier, the left-right scale isn't a line but a circle. Go far enough on either end and you end up with a political model which fits Hitlers third reich or Stalins USSR just as well as it does Mussolini's italy.

                      I once asked a professor in political science what the real, actual differences were between hitlers, stalins and mussolinis reign. His reply was "...very good question."

                      In the end when you get to that extreme turning point between right and left what you really have is a collectivist ideal which mainly consists of hating <insert keyword here>. Almost invariably backed by classical Millennialism. The simple hatred of the other and the affirmation of the excellency of the self.

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                      • icon
                        Uriel-238 (profile), 8 Jul 2020 @ 2:51pm

                        Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini

                        The German National Socialist Party (NSDAP) formed modeling itself after Italian fascism under Mussolini. Hitler wasn't leading yet (Ernst Röhm did most of the legwork until he got long-knifed)

                        Stalin was just a paranoid dictator regardless of what the Communist Party stood for. Saying he was exemplary of communism would be like say Trump is exemplary of American democracy.

                        Though to be fair, Trump is exemplary of democracy in the United States, but that's a far cry from how we imagine representative democracy might actually work with functional representation and checks-and-balances. US democracy is a captured state.

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                      • identicon
                        Anonymous Coward, 13 Jul 2020 @ 3:29pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Right wing / Left wing and Fascism

                        I once asked a professor in political science what the real, actual differences were between hitlers, stalins and mussolinis reign. His reply was "...very good question."

                        Well, there was never much difference between Hitler’s and Mussolini’s reigns, but there were some differences between their reigns and Stalin’s, namely the fact that businesses in the Soviet Union were outright owned and controlled by the state, while Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy were far less controlling of businesses (though, in the former case, Jewish-owned businesses were effectively banned). There were also some significant differences between Stalin’s reign and those of his successors, though all but Gorbachev were quite totalitarian nonetheless and were strongly communist.

                        Furthermore, collectivism is quite different from fascism; it’s basically just doing what is good for all than the good of individuals (the opposite of utilitarianism). It’s basically the political equivalent of what communism aims to do economically.

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    • icon
      bhull242 (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:00pm

      Re:

      Fortunately, it sounds like the plan is to do what I've been suggesting all along: remove profanity, pornography, and threats of violence, while staying neutral on the political arguments.

      Please explain both a) how a cartoon of a cow holding a sign that says “Devin is a loser” by therealdevincow (obviously referring to Congressman Devin Nunes) is either “profanity, pornography, or [a] threat[] of violence,” and b) how banning that user for that post is “staying neutral on the political arguments,” because I’m not seeing it.

      I'm detecting a lot of animosity towards such a platform. Wierd!

      Any animosity is regarding the hypocrisy for praising that platform while it does the same things they criticize Twitter for and for the platform trying to say it sticks to banning what wouldn’t be allowed by the 1A despite the fact that it has banned plenty of content that is protected by the First Amendment. That it draws the line differently or even at all is not the point; it’s the dishonesty and hypocrisy about it.

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      • identicon
        teka, 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:37am

        Re: Re:

        The real crime here is Devin's Cow missing the perfect oppoturnity for a sign calling the Congressman a Mooooo-ser,. I mean, come on.

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:30pm

      Re:

      They are not remotely neutral on politics. They are explicitly banhappy for anything not right-leaning enough. Which is fine! But you and they are all lying your asses off about it.

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    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:15pm

      Re:

      "threats of violence, while staying neutral on the political arguments"

      Is this the point where you have the moment of clarity that tells you that the "political" posts you keep whining about being censored were in fact your Klan buddies threatening violence? Or are you just so committed o your team that you ignore these simple facts?

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:19am

    Is it pronounced par-lur or par-lay? I’m suspecting the former but it’s hard not to see the French word...

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:20am

    I miss the days when shitposting wasn't literal.

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  • icon
    timlash (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:26am

    4Chan Moderation

    What does 4Chan moderate? Perhaps Parler could follow their example.

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    • icon
      Mike Masnick (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:34am

      Re: 4Chan Moderation

      Remember, 8chan came about because people were angry that 4chan was moderating too much.

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    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:39am

      4chan moderates a bare minimum; it mostly boils down to “illegal content” (mainly CSAM) and “furry art”. When it went outside even that for one of the few times in its history — i.e., when it said “knock it off with the Gamergate shit, you fucking jackoffs” — enough people said “no, fuck you” and left for 8chan.

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      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:50pm

        4Chan

        9. There are no real rules about moderation either — enjoy your ban. -- Moot's (classic) rules of the internet

        This still stands in 4chan, in which moderators and custodians will banhammer whoever they feel has broken the rules even only vaguely. And will resurrect old rules and invent new rules as they see fit.

        But I remember MLP:FIM images, NSFW or otherwise, were confined to designated threads (those in which the OP announced it as such) and were even for a while restricted to /b and 1900-0700PST. Furry (porn only) had similar restrictions. There are a number of NSFW topics porn or gore that are similarly confined.

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      • identicon
        Anon E Mouse, 1 Jul 2020 @ 3:25pm

        Re:

        Half right. Telling Gamergate to fuck off did happen, but it wasn't going outside old rules to do that. "No raids", meaning no using 4chan to organize harassment, has been one of 4chan's global rules for a very long time. Gamergate was welcome when it was just talking about how journalists are scum, when it made the jump into harassment campaigns it got the boot.

        As a side note 4chan does have a whole bunch of rules they moderate very heavily, but it's mostly common sense stuff like what topic goes on which board (for example, no video games in the origami board), posts need to be readable, no porn in boards marked as work safe, no spam, that kind of things. The kind of rules almost every discussion board ever needs to enforce. They also have a public viewable list of recent bans, which as of writing this has 11 warnings and 14 bans in the last three hours, with more than half being for off-topic posts.

        So yeah. 4chan's moderators do a lot of moderating, but the rules are mostly about keeping the site running. Does that count as a "bare minimum"? I don't know. Maybe there's a better term for it.

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  • identicon
    Melvin Chudwaters, 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:47am

    If you say something other people don't like, you're automatically a "troll" regardless of the merit or insight of that post.

    It's a meaningless term, wholly subjective, and rules that allow for "trolls" to be censored are no different than rules that allow for people whose arguments you disfavor to be censored.

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    • icon
      Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:54am

      Two things.

      1. Parler has censored exactly zero people; anyone banned by Parler can find a different service to use. (I imagine most of those people went back to Twitter.)

      2. A “troll”, in this sense, does not refer to anyone who merely posts something outside of a given orthodoxy. When we speak of trolls, we speak of people who intentionally antagonize others on a given service. That one of the “better” ways of doing so is to go against the orthodoxy speaks only to the effectiveness of that method.

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    • icon
      Derek Kerton (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:12pm

      Re:

      It's not a meaningless term. But it is often applied meaninglessly.

      A Troll is someone who is posting shit to get a rise or reaction, but doesn't really care much about the debate.

      (it's not absolute: they can care a bit about the debate, but they care MORE about pissing people off, and dragging them along)

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  • icon
    vilain (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 12:21pm

    How long before Amazon AWS has had enough?

    Parler is running on AWS currently. I don't know what AWS' T&Cs are, but I know they kick users off the platform for hosting SPAMMERS. I've complained to them regularly whenever something lands in my Inbox. It might be they'll ban based on fraud. I don't know who's paying for Parler's AWS fees, but I doubt it's Ted Cruz, a notable fan, along with everyone else. Maybe they're doing ads like FB and Twitter. Who would advertise in such a place? Who screens the ads to make sure they're legit and not some scam? Because sooner or later, someone's gonna commit fraud on the site. And if there's enough, AWS is gonna shut them down. The question is how long will it take?

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  • icon
    Bloof (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:05pm

    I can't wait for the first time one of the users of Parler falls afoul of scientology or the Jehova's witnesses and ends up in the legal crosshairs. Twitter, for all it's faults will stand and fight to protect it's users from frivolous lawsuits like those brought by Devin Nunes, Parler will throw them under the bus in a heartbeat and then send them a bill for the pleasure. Afterwards they'll start censoring all mentions of what brought the suit, to protect free speech.

    'We're all about free speech... just don't expect us to defend your speech when it may cost us money.'

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  • icon
    Tim R (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:14pm

    To:
    John Matze
    CEO, Parler

    When you make sensationalized and bombastic claims, don't be surprised when people call you on that shit.

    Sincerely,
    Todd Davis
    CEO, Lifelock
    SSN #<scribble scribble scribble>

    (ed note: paraphrased, I'm sure)

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  • icon
    Derek Kerton (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:19pm

    Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

    Matze wrote:

    “They can make any claim they’d like, but they’re going to be met with a lot of commenters, a lot of people who are going to disagree with them,” Matze said. “That’s how society works, right? If you make a claim, people are going to come and fact check you organically.”

    But that's why they're angry. "Bad Librals" are disagreeing with them on Twitter. And Twitter itself added a tag to Trump's tweet.

    But that is exactly "people are going to come and fact check you".

    Matze's words seem to almost say "Twitter is awesome!! They're doing it right!"

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    • icon
      Koby (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:40pm

      Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

      On Twitter though, the corporation decides, not the people. On an actual free speech platform, only the people will decide. Also, the people can't hide your comment, or flag anyone's speech with special remarks. Everyone is equal in that regard.

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      • icon
        Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:45pm

        …says the guy who refuses to say the law shouldn’t force speech upon social media services and refuses to admit that adding new speech to someone else’s speech isn’t censorship.

        Or do you truly believe I commit censorship whenever I quote part of a post you’ve made and add my own commentary to it?

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      • icon
        Toom1275 (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:55pm

        Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

        On an actual free speech platform, only the people will decide

        Nice of you to finally admit that Twitter is an actual free speech platform.
        Hope you didn't give yourself whiplash contradicting your previous sentence so quickly.

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      • icon
        That One Guy (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:56pm

        Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

        On Twitter though, the corporation decides, not the people.

        Who exactly do you think is handing out the bans on Parler again? Because I'm pretty sure it's not users.

        On an actual free speech platform, only the people will decide.

        In which case there never has been, nor ever will be such a platform, because it would be rendered useless in a matter of days. Your 'free speech platform' would be a complete and utter shithole that would make 4chan(a site I believe you still refuse to visit to prove your commitment to 'free speech') look like a bastion of culture and polite discourse.

        Also, the people can't hide your comment, or flag anyone's speech with special remarks.

        Once more for those with poor reading comprehension it would seem: 'Free speech' is not and never has been shorthand for 'consequence-free speech'. Just because you may be able to say something does not mean others are prohibited from responding in kind, whether that be to make use of a site's system to flag/hide content that they feel violates the rules or by adding commentary to show how and why you are wrong.

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        • icon
          Koby (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:17pm

          Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

          Who exactly do you think is handing out the bans on Parler again? Because I'm pretty sure it's not users.

          The bans are for rules violations, not for disagreeing with the politics behind it.

          In which case there never has been, nor ever will be such a platform, because it would be rendered useless in a matter of days.

          That's been the prediction from many left wingers, but now we're going to actually try the experiment. Again, I'm not making any predictions. But we've now reached 1 week since the Ted Cruz floodgate, and it's still okay.

          whether that be to make use of a site's system to flag/hide content that they feel violates the rules

          Ordinarily, I don't trust biased corporations to make fair judgements. This is why there are calls for reform, and for alternative platforms. Just because the corporation can do it, doesn't mean it isn't an abuse of their corporate power.

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          • icon
            Stephen T. Stone (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:22pm

            The bans are for rules violations, not for disagreeing with the politics behind it.

            If the speech is political, how can you know — with the absolute unyielding certainty of God Herself — the difference between the two?

            we're going to actually try the experiment

            Nice to see you admit that not only are you a self-identified conservative, but that Parler’s primary userbase is conservative as well.

            we've now reached 1 week since the Ted Cruz floodgate, and it's still okay

            One week is nothing. Try making it a full year with some semblance of relevance to Internet culture other than being a running joke like Gab and Voat, and we’ll talk.

            Just because the corporation can do it, doesn't mean it isn't an abuse of their corporate power.

            Now say the same thing about Parler’s admins. An abuse of one’s power doesn’t require corporate assistance.

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              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:07am

              Re:

              I'm off the see the Wizard, the Wizard the Wizard of Laws!

              Tell me, oh great Wizard, how can you know, with absolute unyielding certainty, pretty much ANYTHING, you idiot? Faith is central to the experience of life.

              I mean, for normal people. Not demented Marxists like you.

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              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:40am

                You asked about Certainty

                Mortal,

                this is written in the book of Adams (1987), titled Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency, Ch. Two ¶3, from which we now quote.

                The Electric Monk was a labour-saving device, like a dishwasher or a video recorder. — — Electric monks believed things for you, thus saving you what was becoming an increasingly onerous task, that of believing all the things the world expected you to believe.

                Talk to a Monk. You owe the Anonymous Coward a better grovel.

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          • icon
            That One Guy (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:33pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

            The bans are for rules violations, not for disagreeing with the politics behind it.

            Yup, just like Twitter, glad to see you support giving the boot to rule breakers.

            That's been the prediction from many left wingers, but now we're going to actually try the experiment.

            No, you're not, because by your own definition Parler doesn't qualify as a 'free speech platform'. They have rules as to what is allowed that are more strict than legally required, the site enforces those rules, and they are absolutely kicking people off, just like previous social media platforms.

            This is why there are calls for reform, and for alternative platforms.

            Bollocks, the calls for 'reform' are because a bunch of people with persecution complexes don't like the fact that actions have consequences, and that their 'free speech content' isn't something the majority of other people care to deal with.

            Just because the corporation can do it, doesn't mean it isn't an abuse of their corporate power.

            And just because you don't like it, doesn't mean it's an abuse of power. If I owned a store I would not in any way be abusing my corporate power to set clear rules on acceptable behavior and then give the boot to those that break them.

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          • icon
            Mike Masnick (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 4:55pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

            The bans are for rules violations, not for disagreeing with the politics behind it.

            Um. That's the same with Twitter bans.

            Again, I'm not making any predictions. But we've now reached 1 week since the Ted Cruz floodgate, and it's still okay.

            Lol. It's a hellhole full of hate and bigotry -- and the platform is banning tons of people. So it doesn't meet your qualifications at all.

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              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:00am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

              And are we "deplorable" too?

              Come on, Hillary, let it out! It's YOU behind the curtain, posing as the Wizard of Laws! You can't hide forever!

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              • icon
                bhull242 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 6:34am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

                Dude, let Hillary go. It’s been nearly four years.

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                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:43pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

                  Hilary has been let go since the very beginning. For all the hue and cry and making Hilary's arrest the promise Trump swore his campaign on, absolutely jack all has been done to place her behind bars.

                  "Let Hilary go" has become the Trump campaign's unspoken message. It's a fucking joke.

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              • icon
                Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:50pm

                "wizard of laws"

                Oh it's you doing the Hillary bit again. You're recycling old material. You need to go work on some more and come back when you have new stuff.

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                • icon
                  Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Jul 2020 @ 7:48am

                  Re: "wizard of laws"

                  Oh, give old Baghdad Bob a break. He's barely at the stage where he's able to no longer end every comment with a "But Obama!".

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              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Jul 2020 @ 7:47am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

                "Come on, Hillary, let it out!"

                It says a lot about a certain subset of self-styled "conservatives" that to this day they can't let go of the Black Man in the White House and the Woman Presidential Candidate.

                "And are we "deplorable" too? "

                Well, I guess if you're that much of a misogynist that the threat of Hillary has you waking up at nights crying tears of blood four years down the road with not a single mention of Bill, Kerry, or any of the other democrat candidates around - or, hell, even the current one...then yes. You're deplorable.

                Of course, Baghdad Bob, you are also deplorable due to your openly weathered naked bigotry and racism alongside your hard-on for fascist and national socialist ideals around here.

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          • icon
            bhull242 (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 5:08pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

            The bans are for rules violations, not for disagreeing with the politics behind it.

            Same with Twitter as far as I can tell. More to the point, you’re moving the goalposts. What you said before was:

            On Twitter though, the corporation decides, not the people.

            You did not limit that to politics. You said, flat out, that the corporation makes moderation decisions, not the people.

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            identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:02am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

            Hey, I'll make a prediction. Lots of companies are pioneers, and dominate a market for a while. In all honesty, Facebook developed (and stole) and lot of really interesting technology that was novel for it's day. That's over now, spinning up a web site that takes comments and videos and has a large membership is really really easy. Very little effort at all.

            My prediction is that Facebook will go the way of Osborne Computer (remember them?) (probably not, that's my point).

            Americans Unite In Great Numbers on Parler!

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            • icon
              Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:53pm

              the way of Osborne Computer

              Microsoft developed and stole a lot of interesting technology (from Digital Research. No, we don't forget.) And went the way of... Microsoft.

              Anonymous Coward you suck at correlating attributes to outcomes. Maybe don't do that.

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              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Jul 2020 @ 7:56am

                Re: the way of Osborne Computer

                Well, it's Baghdad Bob, after all. He never made an argument yet which he didn't feel compelled to kick in the nuts himself, usually in the same sentence.

                He strikes me as the type of bucket-and-ladder clown who'd make a complete ass of himself in the ring and then try to sue the audience for laughing at him.

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          • icon
            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 2:08am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

            "Ordinarily, I don't trust biased corporations to make fair judgements."

            I'm not sure I understand the modern US definition of "conservatism". Are you saying private entities should be subjected to collectivist majority rule? Since when is a corporation beholden to be "fair" other than in respecting the law?

            Here's how it works, according to the capitalist approach. Platforms who practice terms of service unacceptable to the majority will fail in favor of platforms who DO practice fairness.

            Here's how it works according to communist collectivist approach (and, apparently, yours, Koby); Platforms abide by the rules set by the state. The consumer gets the "choice" between option A, B and C, which are all identical.

            "...This is why there are calls for reform, and for alternative platforms."

            But alternative platforms already exist as an option. You can start one today. Gab was a direct product of people thinking twitter was overly moderated, as was 8chan.

            I think you need to stop pussy-footing about the actual argument you want to carry - that you (for some reason) find it "unfair" that a certain type of vocal minority doesn't get to promote their message to the vast crowds on the popular platforms because the views that minority has to bring is extremely unpopular and very few want to hear it.

            Sure, this means the majority won't allow either the neo-nazis, the KKK or Alex Jones copycats to sit around and harvest them for clickbait and ad revenue on a massively populated platform - but that's how free speech is intended to work, in the end.

            In the end, Koby, none of your arguments make sense unless they're considered against the hypothesis that what you're really after - and the reason you keep backing away from every simple straightforward question to the very simple issues at hand - is that what you're really after with your persistent attacks on section 230 is to remove the option for the main majority of the citizenry to opt-out of having to listen to every shit-talking troll with an agenda since the platforms won't be able to keep those trolls out any longer.

            I'm honestly no longer concerned what your motives are for trying to peddle this sort of crap when all your reasoned discourse just keeps distilling down to the same thin smear of irrational assault on free speech Baghdad Bob/Hamilton keeps spewing in a less verbose manner.

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            • icon
              bhull242 (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 9:46am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

              Here's how it works according to communist collectivist approach (and, apparently, yours, Koby); Platforms abide by the rules set by the state. The consumer gets the "choice" between option A, B and C, which are all identical.

              No, that’s just weak capitalism, maybe mixed with socialism. Communism means that not only are the rules set by the state but that the businesses, the profits, etc. are outright owned by the state. I think you’re assuming capitalism is the same as laissez-faire economics, but the term capitalism actually encapsulates more than just that specific system.

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              • icon
                Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Jul 2020 @ 6:58am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

                "Communism means that not only are the rules set by the state but that the businesses, the profits, etc. are outright owned by the state."

                That's the dictionary-definition, yes. Now, in classical fascist corporatism you have the state instead owned by the corporation.

                In both cases the State and Corporation are One. Although the methods of approach are different the end results of both are identical.

                It's darkly ironic that if you leave out the political keywords completely communists and fascists would get along splendidly. The focus on collectivist unity, the "greater good", the invariable scapegoatism, the belief in order imposed from above on the individual trumping individual rights...
                The right-left scale isn't a line. It's more of a circle. The extreme ends meet.

                "I think you’re assuming capitalism is the same as laissez-faire economics..."

                No, even if we go by Adam Smith's classical definition of capitalism, the libertarian model simply won't fit - it's pretty clear that Adam Smith assumed a level playing field to exist in market economics and implied that the state has a role there. Someone has to be the arbiter.
                Laissez-faire or the libertarian approach instead has the somewhat naive belief that a market can do without government regulation altogether. And if humans weren't human that might be true - but by those criteria communism is also a perfect political model which will work as long as we obtain perfect people to populate it with. And in fact the logical evolution of laissez-faire economics is the same unitarian result of corporation and state being one and the same as we find in communism.

                In my example given above the communist approach (or if you like, fascist corporatist) is that the consumer (or citizen) is provided the illusion of choice. Handled well this is China, with any number of platforms all toeing the party line. Or a nominally "capitalist" nation where regulatory capture has gone so far the corporation IS the body government, at which point, once again, you are offered the illusion of choice.

                The main difference is the approach to the end result which in communism means the amount of choices you have as a citizen are narrowed and in classical corporatism means your "choices" become fifteen different brands of more or less the same.

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                • icon
                  Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Jul 2020 @ 7:14am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

                  Addendum:

                  A classic example is China which presents a challenge to a lot of commie-hating american nationalists and other simple-minded folk. On the one hand China is definitely communist - even by their own definition.

                  On the other hand China often whips the US - ostensibly a capitalist nation - in many markets. That, essentially, is often the very reason for the anti-china sentiment, after all.

                  The answer is, looking at the way just about every captain of industry in China is either directly joined at the hip to politicians or directly involved in politics themselves, that China applies the corporatist model, leaving the boundaries blurred between corporation and state. But wait...that means the state actually DOES own the means of production, the CEO essentially just being the government official in charge and the board of shareholders just being another political committee.

                  The US is moving towards the same goal currently, though coming from the opposite direction. Increasing regulatory capture, the gradual elimination of actual market competition with one monopoly after the other emerging, every candidate for high office deeply invested in furthering the interests of his/her major campaign contributors first and foremost.

                  And in both cases the end result is the aggregation of power - which in modern days is measured by control over the flows of currency.

                  The only real difference between Communism and Fascism is in the narrative.

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                  • identicon
                    Anonymous Coward, 13 Jul 2020 @ 3:32pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

                    You’re confusing fascism with corporatism. Please explain how Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and Fascist Spain were owned by corporations.

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      • icon
        Celyxise (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:02pm

        Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

        On Twitter though, the corporation decides, not the people.

        Which is of course different from Parler. Parler would never ban someone for sharing an opinion it doesn't agree with.

        Oh wait.

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          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:05am

          Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

          None of you idiots would find any friends on Parler. Except me, of course. I like you, but that's because I'm a Christian. And not just that, I'm a White American Male Christian Conservative. I like everybody.

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          • identicon
            Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:44am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

            I'm a White American Male Christian Conservative. I like everybody.

            You forgot the /s tag. But I marked this as funny as hell anyways!

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          • icon
            Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 6 Jul 2020 @ 8:00am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

            "I like everybody."

            Except for muslims, black people, gays, lesbians, transgendered people, democrats, people who are against fascism, mexicans, teachers, pirates, scientists, chinese people, foreigners in general and Women In Politics in particular.

            But aside from those and a few others you like everybody, right, Baghdad Bob? I may have missed a few but given how often you bring a pet peeve to the table that might be understandable.

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      • icon
        bhull242 (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:03pm

        Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

        You know that Parley is doing the same thing, right? They’re a corporation too.

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      • icon
        bhull242 (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:05pm

        Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

        On an actual free speech platform, only the people will decide.

        That’s not what “free speech” is, but whatever.

        Also, the people can't hide your comment, or flag anyone's speech with special remarks.

        Wait, so how are the people deciding?

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        • icon
          Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:57pm

          Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

          On an actual free speech platform, only the people will decide.

          That’s not what free speech is, but whatever.

          Though a system in which the users get to upvote or downvote specific moderation rules does sound like an interesting idea.

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      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:41pm

        Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

        Which not-corporation is not-deciding on Parler, exactly?

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      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:24pm

        Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

        "On an actual free speech platform, only the people will decide."

        Then go use one instead of trying to seize Twitter's private property becuase you're butthurt about your fellow fascists being told to GTFO.

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          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:04am

          Re: Re: Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

          Face it, loser, conservatives rule. We have the money. We have the technology. We have the will, and the heart, and the soul of warriors. TRUMP!

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          • icon
            Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:59pm

            Again with the "we" thing.

            Unless you're in one of the top one-hundred richest families in the US (more or less), they're going to purge you as well.

            You get that, right? Anonymous Coward? You understand they're going to dump you from the country club as soon as they're done using you to dump the less desirable folk. Yes?

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    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 2:49pm

      Re: Isn't That Why They Left Twitter

      more like, "We wish we were Twitter!!!"

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:28pm

    Well that didn't take long...

    And in record breaking time the site that boasted that unlike other social media sites they would be brave enough to host all that content that other sites were too cowardly to have, the conversations they were too afraid to allow... only to about face when people took them at their word and showed just what liars and hypocrites they really are, that all they really meant was 'our kind of assholes are welcome here'.

    Of course the cherry on top this time is the complete and utter dishonesty and/or lack of self-awareness in that last quote. Yes, much like other social media sites Parler is getting rid of what they view as the 'darkness', that's why those other social media platforms were kicking people off, the only difference this time around is that the person who said that happens to agree with the site as to who deserves the boot.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:34pm

    Ads that advertise sex services or prostition are now illegal under
    Fosta, i don't think any website in America can have ads for illegal drugs or sell guns to people under 18,
    or sell stolen items like military weapons or explosive devices. So every website will have to be moderated to some extent even it supports free speech for Conservative groups.
    If you want to attract a lot of users you will need to
    ban trolls and Spammers from the comments section.

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    • icon
      Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:40pm

      Selling guns to minors

      I'm pretty sure Millennials and Zoomers have all learned to click the I am a legal adult clickgate since they were six.

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        identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:58pm

        Re: Selling guns to minors

        Tell me I'm wrong, but aren't you the same guy that was clamoring for gun rights for the legally insane?

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        • icon
          Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:03am

          Selling guns to crazy people

          Aren't you the same guy that was clamoring for gun rights for the legally insane?

          That would be me, yes.

          But I wasn't arguing for the legally insane, a term most typically associated with the insanity defense.† I was arguing for typical Americans who are diagnosed with mental illness. I think they should have full access to the same set of rights that anyone not diagnosed with a mental illness would have.

          Would you not agree?

          Or do you believe that a woman with PTSD from living too long with a violent husband who is still stalking her should not be allowed to possess a firearm?

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          • icon
            PaulT (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:27am

            Re: Selling guns to crazy people

            "Or do you believe that a woman with PTSD from living too long with a violent husband who is still stalking her should not be allowed to possess a firearm?"

            The seems to list a hell of a lot of social and systemic failure before you get to the question you're asking.

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            • icon
              Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 2:15am

              Women who are stalked

              Women with PTSD who want a handgun because they're stalked by men (not always ex-intimates) is a situation I've encountered more than once. And yes, there's a tuckfun of systemic failure that leads to that situation, including police not taking them seriously and restraining orders being ignored with impunity.

              And yes, law enforcement doesn't like people with PTSD having firearms, but then they don't like anyone having firearms except law enforcement officers, and yet the troopers of our thin blue line are entirely disinterested in being Johnny-on-the-spot whenever there's trouble, so here we are.

              Curiously PTSD does have a troubling intersection with firearms. Combat veterans with PTSD are (depending on the case) at higher risk of suicide, at which point firearms can become too convenient. We're developing programs now where a suicide risk can call in (or be called in by designated buddies) so that his guns are collected and held until the risk passes.

              I don't think guns in the hands of stalked women necessarily help matters. We don't know in a given situation until she is confronted with a threat and shoots someone, or doesn't. Most of us really do not want to kill other people. And yet the US does have an abundance of cases in which women are ignored by police only to be assaulted or even murdered by their stalkers.

              Doing a quick Google check, this isn't a problem unique to the US.

              To my clients I've pointed out the high-end pepper-spray canisters available online. They are the same configuration used for riot control, only with a smaller tankard, and statistically have the same take-down rate as handguns. Slightly better, actually. And you don't kill someone dead, rather just wreck their day.

              But in one instance, the client slept better having a loaded Ruger .45 by her bed. Fortunately she never needed it.

              Somehow, though, I get the feeling Anonymous Coward doesn't actually consider the full spectrum of people he is painting with the same legally insane brush when he is so eager to color my position as unreasonable.

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                identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 2:54am

                Re: Women who are stalked

                Look, I like you. You're much more honest and intelligent than the other retards around here. And you're really a very compelling writer. You might be a touch pessimistic, and you don't seem to have much faith in the world around you, and you're really the only one here that publicly admits to being locked up in a loony bin. I've been there, too. One flew over the cucoos nest, remember that? That story was about me, in my younger days. But that's all behind me now. Anyway, I get your analysis of ladies and stalkers and pepper spray and stuff, man, you're a good writer, I can't help but agree with you. Why are you so negative? Sexually repressed? Hard to find new girlfriends in the loony bin? I never had a problem, but hey, not everyone has my level of obvious charm. And I certainly sleep better with a loaded gun, who doesn't? I like to finger the safety under my pillow, click, click, helps me sleep. Not a luger, though, they suck. Glock, that's a man's gun. I'd bet you agree with that.

                What if I give you $20k to come over to Parler? Would that cheer you up?

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                • icon
                  Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:34pm

                  "Why are you so negative?"

                  We're in an epidemic that our peerless leader believes it is in fashion to ignore, and Americans are ignoring it. Further more, the federal government shit the bed, and we have inadequate PPE and medical facilities to manage the caseload. (As I write this, the US leads the world at 2.7 million cases and 128,000 deaths.)

                  And we're in a fascist police state which we've actually unmasked for years now, and the response has been tepid (if ongoing), meaning more Americans will die at the hands of law enforcement and there's going to be another flashpoint worse than this one.

                  We've discovered our peerless leader has yet again betrayed the United States in ignoring the Russian bounties on American soldiers, but now we know the notion of impeaching him from office is moot. (Perhaps it is insane of me to hope the Joint Chiefs of Staff would steakknife Trump after he betrayed the Kurds. They didn't, but if they had, I think this situation would be going differently.)

                  The mass medical crisis is turning into a food crisis and exacerbating the housing crisis, increasing the multiplier for social unrest.

                  Only someone who is oblivious, delusional or disassociated could look at this with a positive outlook. This isn't Lord of the Rings where Frodo is somewhere trudging to mount doom ready to invoke a deus ex machina. This isn't even WWII where the allies are steadily progressing across Europe to intervene in the madness.

                  No, the United States is Fucked with a capital F. And it speaks volumes, Anonymous Coward that neither you nor the President of the United States can acknowledge it.

                  Or maybe trolling a forum about issues too complicated for you to understand is your way of coping with the incomprehensibly bleak, sans any better alternatives. That, I can get.

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                  • icon
                    PaulT (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 11:45pm

                    Re: "Why are you so negative?"

                    "(As I write this, the US leads the world at 2.7 million cases and 128,000 deaths.)"

                    As I write this, a day later, the current numbers are 2,837,189 infected and 131,485 dead (numbers from Worldometer). It's also clear that these numbers are accelerating.

                    I can understand why someone would want to have some form of escape from that picture, although I don't understand the path this guy chooses.

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                    • icon
                      Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 3:08am

                      Re: Re: "Why are you so negative?"

                      "I can understand why someone would want to have some form of escape from that picture, although I don't understand the path this guy chooses."

                      Oh? We've seen enough of this shit in europe through history. If all you've got to hold you up is a sense of what you personally think to be patriotism then every new bit of evidence showing that all is not right in the state of denmark just prompts another doubling down on what is already blind, hysterical, frothing-at-the-mouth denial of reality in favor of "We're the best! Raah!".

                      All this guy **has is "Trump! Trump! 'Murica is numbah ONE!". Take that away and he's left facing the hard and cold reality that he's a hopeless loser living in a dystopia where the only choices he's offered for the rest of his life is fifteen different flavors of shit. Rather than in the "land of hope and opportunity" which somehow always fails to come through for him. No doubt because of the leftists. And the liberals. The teacher who refused to give him good grades. Black people and mexicans stealing the job he never got. The illuminati keeping him from getting promoted out of flipping burgers. Or the bogeyman under the bed keeping him down in general.

                      Then Alex Jones tells him the global leftist conspiracy is making even the frogs gay and all of a sudden he knows just why he isn't a billionaire sitting in the sun gazing out over his infinity pool. It's All Their Fault <fill in chosen scapegoat here>.

                      Then all he needs is a figurehead or leader. Someone not too book learnt. A bit folksy. Someone a bit like him except successful, showing him it can be done.

                      Before Trump it was GWB. Before GWB it was Reagan - though at least in Reagans time the conservatives in the GOP clung to some form of standards, keeping the pond scum at arms length rather than in the nice seats in the convention.

                      But he's far from alone. The US is in such a crappy general state right now there's no shortage of people so sidelined (often for good reason) and desperate they keep pinning their hope to whatever clown decides to butter them up.

                      You should understand this guy. We've had no shortage of them ourselves, here in europe, at one time or other.

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              • icon
                PaulT (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 2:56am

                Re: Women who are stalked

                Yes, understand the problems involved. It's just that, since I don't come from a gun-focussed culture, I find it crazy that after every social and legal system has let this woman down, and continues to do so, your main concern is what kind of weapon she needs to have available.

                It's way to complex an issue to be discussing here, but I'd agree that there is a real question as to whether people with serious mental conditions should be given carte blanche with access to guns, even if you can think of situations where they are actually needed for protection rather than shooting up a school. But, again, maybe that's just the fact that I come from a place not obsessed with the things talking.

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                • icon
                  Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:50pm

                  "main concern"

                  I find it crazy that after every social and legal system has let this woman down, and continues to do so, your main concern is what kind of weapon she needs to have available.

                  It is crazy, but the story I'm telling is actually the end of a long process and conversation. Part of the crisis counseling process is looking at the problems and which ones can be adequately addressed in the moment. Obviously we want to ensure the safety of clients when that is possible. When that can't be done, we look at surviving to a time when it can.

                  I still stand by my position that rampage killings are a symptom of far greater systemic failures, and removing guns won't address those failure or stop the killings. It will slow down suicides, but like the invention of the safety lamp, it will reveal more creative, messier ways for people to check out. (Not a bad thing. Society responds to visible tragic messes.)

                  This is one of the data sets that has convince me abolition of the justice system is a good idea. The police do nothing for domestic violence situations, for stalking behavior. They suck at sexual assault. They suck at people losing their minds.

                  But a robust mental health system (along with de-stigmatization of mental healthcare) could put a whopper of a dent in all these things.

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                  • icon
                    PaulT (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 11:51pm

                    Re: "main concern"

                    "Obviously we want to ensure the safety of clients when that is possible. When that can't be done, we look at surviving to a time when it can."

                    I get that, and I can see that it's a deeply personal issue for you. I'm just commenting as a complete outsider where the weapon choice just seems like an alien concern to me. My apologies if it feels like I'm trivialising anything.

                    "I still stand by my position that rampage killings are a symptom of far greater systemic failures, and removing guns won't address those failure or stop the killings."

                    No doubt that in most of these cases the system screwed up big time. But, the end result is always going to be less horrific if guns are removed from the equation, as can be seen when people turn to mass stabbing attempts in the UK. Equally horrific in many ways, but a lot more people survive, and that's not even counting things like the Las Vegas shooting, which would literally not have been possible if guns weren't there.

                    "This is one of the data sets that has convince me abolition of the justice system is a good idea."

                    I think that what most of us can agree on now is that the current system in the US is woefully inadequate for a great many things, and that since small changes from within aren't effective, it's maybe time for a reset.

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                  • identicon
                    ryuugami, 4 Jul 2020 @ 1:06am

                    Re: "main concern"

                    [Police] suck at sexual assault.

                    Horrifically, from what I hear, the US police are actually pretty good at sexual assault. (Maybe even better than they are at murdering people who may or may not, if you squint, vaguely look like they have moved their hand an inch towards somewhere where a gun could potentially be.)

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                  • icon
                    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 3:21am

                    Re: "main concern"

                    "I still stand by my position that rampage killings are a symptom of far greater systemic failures, and removing guns won't address those failure or stop the killings."

                    It's interesting to note that numerous sociologists have posed that very question, and come to that exact conclusion. Hence the importance of the mental health index (sadly currently using suicide statistics only which skews the shown data) in every debate about rampage killings.

                    Generally speaking there's a direct correlation between rampage killings and a nations level of mental and societal stress. But little or no correlation what so ever between rampage killings and guns per capita statistics or severity of gun laws.

                    "But a robust mental health system (along with de-stigmatization of mental healthcare) could put a whopper of a dent in all these things."

                    And, sadly, mental health care somehow comes dead last to the table whenever the budget gets handed out. Not visible enough. Not sexy enough. It ought to be, in any society, common sense that people who are pressured until they crack may end up on a watertower with a rifle. Hell, going postal is a common trope even in the US.

                    And yet, as the example of Shkreli, and before him the various shenanigans of the American Medical Association shows, as long as you can't show clear and tangible profit in treating the mentally ill, therapy will remain the province of those whose health plan includes a lot of it or who can afford it. Which won't help much.

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            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 2:17am

              Re: Re: Selling guns to crazy people

              "The seems to list a hell of a lot of social and systemic failure before you get to the question you're asking."

              ...you realize he's talking about this from a US perspective, right?

              I've been back and forth on the gun issue a lot of times and have come to the conclusion that where the US is concerned every gun debate seems to start with the tacit assumption that a lot of social and systemic failure has already happened.

              It's one thing to advocate gun control in a society with a functioning social contract. Another issue entirely to advocate gun control in a society which seems to be in permanent state of readiness for about three different civil wars.

              If the US had the civil rights stability of switzerland gun control wouldn't even come up as an issue. Sadly it appears to have the civil rights stability of Beirut in the 80's and thus the question of whether it's wise to let people arm themselves or not comes from an entirely different perspective.

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  • icon
    Uriel-238 (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:38pm

    This is consistent with other "Conservative alternatives"

    When looking at Conservapedia (the allegedly Conservative leaning Wikipedia) they went from telling the truth without the liberal bias to For the rest of us <winketty nudge> pretty quickly. Now I think it is the project of a single person who has a few henchmen but won't let his own word go challenged.

    Oh wait...there's a conservative bible database in which the Holy Bible is edited to serve modern conservative American values. I don't know which modern conservative American values, or which bible was its original foundation. But it's a thing.

    (Far more fun is the LOLCat bible which crowdsourced its translation.)

    I wonder if Parler, like Conservapedia is just a middle-aged man's personal journey to discovering that he's been wrong all along, and how he processes this new information.

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      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:57pm

      Re: This is consistent with other "Conservative alternatives"

      Or maybe you're a lunatic ranting alone on a public globalist forum where no one has any idea what you're talking about.

      Could be that, too.

      Parler is great, though. Did I mention I was an Invenstor in Parler? How about you? Invest much? Work for a living? Own a home? Have a job? Or are you wasting away in a Lunatic Asylum on the West Coast of Norther Mexico.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 2:23am

        "no one has any idea what you're talking about"

        Anonymous Coward, is this why you're so eager to dismiss me? You have no idea what I'm talking about?

        You seem to have a firm mental image of who I am, or who you are desperate to imagine I am. I think it's like our President when he encounters women journalists who ask him questions he doesn't want to think about.

        Maybe you should go back to your Invensting. It sounds like an exciting combination of investing and inventing. I bet you're one regular John Galt.

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          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 2:48am

          Re: "no one has any idea what you're talking about"

          Galt? Gault?

          You're probably right. You're obviously a better writer than I am. But I'm less insane.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:51pm

            "less insane"

            Don't be so sure. I suspect you've never been assessed for intake.

            Can't bother to Google?

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            • icon
              Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 3:40am

              Re: "less insane"

              "Can't bother to Google?"

              The John Galt reference is probably a bit too "book learnt" for the average trumper. Which goes to show just how far those benighted heathens have deviated from the GOP, not even knowing their own patron saints.

              I've noticed Baghdad Bob/Hamilton's new spiel is all about writing a narrative around his adversaries being gays, lesbians, or, for some reason, school teachers (which he apparently finds a terrifying source to gain information from) in addition to claiming they're all insane.

              If he stays true to form he'll continue his relatively measured string of spontaneous and disconnected ad hom non sequitors for about a week longer before his usual "episode" comes along and he starts screaming in hysterics again about how he'll "rape all the aspies", shortly after which he'll tell everyone how he's never coming around here again, ever. Again.

              In a world where most of the truly shitty stuff is unpredictable Baghdad Bob/Hamilton at least comes through as a cycle of insanity so regular you could use him to set your clock.

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              • icon
                bhull242 (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 9:58am

                Re: Re: "less insane"

                In all fairness, Ayn Rand was more of a libertarian or utilitarian. Most conservatives have probably never read much—if any—of her work (not that I blame them; that stuff isn’t really fun or interesting to read). I honestly don’t get why conservatives profess to love her so much considering how many positions (like re:abortion and being opposed to any regulations of businesses) she would disagree with them on. (Paul Rand seems to be the only one who seems to be largely consistent with her broader ideas.)

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                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 11:21pm

                  Re: Re: Re: "less insane"

                  "In all fairness, Ayn Rand was more of a libertarian or utilitarian"

                  Up to the point where she needed help from the government herself, of course, at which point she gladly took it.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                  • icon
                    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 8 Jul 2020 @ 7:22am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: "less insane"

                    "Up to the point where she needed help from the government herself, of course, at which point she gladly took it."

                    ...and she'd be the first one to say, unabashedly, that if some fool comes around handing you money of course you grab it. While realizing, with contempt, what gullible fools they are.

                    I think the way Ayn Rand advocated treating the act of charity and humanitarianism with contempt is what really gets to me. In the end that becomes nothing more than attempt to provide affirmation to the sociopath or teach the average citizen how to successfully train him/herself into one.

                    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                    • icon
                      Uriel-238 (profile), 8 Jul 2020 @ 2:56pm

                      Ayn Rand

                      Her letters to her contemporaries and family paint her to be a cold, cruel woman. While I can't determine the correlation of whether wealth made her a cold capitalist, or cold capitalism made her wealthy, hers is a story that demonstrates the problem of systems in which terrible people rise to the top.

                      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      That One Guy (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:38am

      And the lord did say, 'Screw you, I got mine.'

      Oh wait...there's a conservative bible database in which the Holy Bible is edited to serve modern conservative American values. I don't know which modern conservative American values, or which bible was its original foundation. But it's a thing.

      Oh that is just too good if so, not to mention exposing that they are just using the book to justify what they already believe/want to do.

      'This book is the word of The Almighty God, but people keep pointing to passages in it that make us look like complete assholes, so looks like we're just going to need to do a little 'editing' to 'modernize' it.'

      I wonder if Parler, like Conservapedia is just a middle-aged man's personal journey to discovering that he's been wrong all along, and how he processes this new information.

      While I'm not sure it'll change many minds due to the kind of people who would flock to it not being big on the whole 'admitting to being wrong' thing I suspect it's going to be a rather unpleasant wake-up for more than a few as they find out just what sort of platform you get when it's jut nothing but 'conservatives', with a good many eventually crawling back to Twitter or Facebook to dig themselves out of the muck they'd so gleefully jumped into without checking first.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        ryuugami, 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:25am

        Re: And the lord did say, 'Screw you, I got mine.'

        I suspect it's going to be a rather unpleasant wake-up for more than a few as they find out just what sort of platform you get when it's jut nothing but 'conservatives'

        Eh, I don't think any of them will realize it. Isn't this at least the third or fourth time in the last 5 years or so that the exact same situation is playing out?

        Right-wingers get pissed that you get banned for being an asshole, they start an alternative service that doesn't ban or moderate assholes (as long as they're right-wing), the service is -- surprise surprise -- overrun by assholes, right-wingers quietly crawl back.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 7 Jul 2020 @ 3:44am

          Re: Re: And the lord did say, 'Screw you, I got mine.'

          "...the service is -- surprise surprise -- overrun by assholes, right-wingers quietly crawl back."

          And promptly start whining again about how the well-moderated forums where liberals hang out don't allow discussion of "core conservative values" such as how inherently criminal black people and mexicans are or how far you should allow a woman to get from the kitchen.

          It's pretty telling that even the most fervent "alt-right" crowd end up not being able to stand most of their peers for long.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    jonr (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 1:39pm

    OK, what "official" rule does this break?

    https://twitter.com/DevinCow/status/1278092655914659840

    Unless the rule is "we don't like it" -- which as Mike points out, is valid, but hypocritical. Heck, they aren't even making fun of Parler.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    crinisen (profile), 1 Jul 2020 @ 5:37pm

    A safe space

    If I'm understanding it, Parler is working hard to become the space space for people who think the existence of safe spaces are a symptom of everything wrong with this country....

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
      identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 1 Jul 2020 @ 11:53pm

      Re: A safe space

      You know, in a funny way, I kind of agree with you. I feel safe there, I feel in the majority, and it feels really good. Maybe you're right about that.

      Maybe Facebook, Twitter and others, with the left leaning ways, have ensured their own demise. Imagine the future valuation of Parler, if things continue to go their way. Conservatives like me have a LOT of money and we vote with our wallets. The left is starting to eat itself, in public, in really humiliating ways. Queers like Cook are going out of style.

      How many times have I heard on this site "if you don't like it go do your own".

      There is no special Technology in Facebook or Twitter or Techdirt any more. It's commonplace. They were the pioneers, but they have squandered their opportunity to really serve the market.

      Now the market will rule. With all the money and most of the common sense, the MARKET will drive you Marxists out of existence. Again. Like the Measles.

      Except for the Anti-Vaxers and the Anti-Facists and the Anti-Police people. Like you. They will continue, in their dark corners, under their phony names, while the rest of us get laid, again and again, over and over. What a beautiful life.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        PaulT (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:12am

        Re: Re: A safe space

        "Conservatives like me have a LOT of money and we vote with our wallets"

        Then why don't you do it? This discussion would't be happening if you weren't refusing to do that.

        Seriously, stop the whiny victim act and do something.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:34am

          Re: Re: Re: A safe space

          I'm not sure I understand you. I do vote with my money. I contribute to Trump. I contribute to Michael Flynn. I'd like to contribute to my attorney to SUE Techdirt in court for Defamation like Yours, but he keeps telling me it's CHEAPER to just post here. So blame that on him, not on me. He's Jewish, that's why I like him as my attorney. He's salt of the earth, really. You remember that guy on Schindler's list that kept the gold in his teeth, and then they took it out and made a gold ring for Schinder? That's him! He's the guy. He's quite old now, but wise beyond words. He think it's CHEAPER to just POST AND POST AND POST, so OK he's a SAINT so I GO ALONG WITH HIM!

          Clear enough?

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            PaulT (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:50am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: A safe space

            "I'm not sure I understand you. "

            If you voted with your wallets, you're be setting up and using alternative social media platforms instead of whining and trying to remove their free speech rights after they tell you you're not welcome on their private property. We'd be cowering in the glory of how popular your safe space is, rather than reading your toddler tantrums.

            "I contribute to Trump. I contribute to Michael Flynn"

            Yes, corrupt grifters do have their marks.

            "I'd like to contribute to my attorney to SUE Techdirt in court for Defamation like Yours, but he keeps telling me it's CHEAPER to just post here"

            Out of your outrageously dumb fantasies, I think the funniest one you're told is you have enough money to throw away on lawsuits that could never win in court, but whatever lawyer is desperate enough to have you as a client told you to not give him the money.

            Well, rather you being an idiot here than being on a social media platform where people might believe whatever racist memes got you kicked off there.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 3:03am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: A safe space

              You would rather I was here? That's very kind of you. Not like you at all, really, maybe you're turning over a new leaf.

              Oh, wait, you're a leftie - I might have to explain that.

              Q: Why was the tree excited about the future?
              A: It was ready to turn over a new leaf!

              Explanation: “To turn over a new leaf” means to start anew, to start again, fresh. Someone who has had problems might turn over a new leaf and begin again (study more, learn something new, stop a bad habit, start a new good habit such as exercising, or being honest, or not using a phony pony name, or being a lesbian separatist in disguise.

              A tree has many leaves (one leaf, two leaves). Do the leaves turn over? Not really but maybe before a storm.

              This joke plays with the word leaf and makes me think about the future. What are your plans? Do you need to turn over a new leaf? Well, PaulT? Do you GET IT? do you GET IT? do you GET IT?

              Probably not. Leftie.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            techflaws (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 9:18am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: A safe space

            but he keeps telling me it's CHEAPER to just post here.

            And it working wonderfully too!

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:45am

          Re: Re: Re: A safe space

          Mate, when you gonna learn - stop replying to the trolls. This post was doing so well ignoring him!

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:42am

        Serving the market

        Facebook is worth $615 billion. According to Wikipedia 44 percent of the US population gets news through Facebook. With the exception of countries that have blocked off Facebook, it serves the entire world and has 2.5 billion active users (so, about a third of the human population).

        Twitter is worth $26 billion. It has 321 million active users (so, about the population of the US).

        Parler hasn't gone public. It has 1.6 million active users (so about the population of Idaho).

        Are you sure you are aware of how profoundly ambitious and improbable your hopes and dreams are? I think my grandson is more likely to become a superhero when he grows up.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
          identicon
          Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:51am

          Re: Serving the market

          Yeah, that sounds about right. How long did it take Facebook to get to over a million users? How long did it take Parler? I'm guessing it went faster with Parler. A lot faster. The technology is now trivial.

          Maybe your grandson will become president in the future, who knows? Let's just imagine for a minute that the law applies equally to everyone, including your grandson, including you and me, and America continues to offer people freedom, liberty and the right to pursue happiness. He could do ANYTHING!

          Same for Parler. In many business, it's not the FIRST that makes the most money, it's the one who best meets the UNMET NEED. Twitter is too left, Facebook is too left, for America, and for me. Maybe they will become the globalist echo chamber, and Parler will be the American echo chamber, who knows? It's a free country! Anything could happen!

          Even you, completely unattached to reason or reality, would agree with that. It's a free country! Free for your Grandson! Free for Parler! FREE FREE FREE! WIth Justice, and Liberty, for All. Amen.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            PaulT (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 12:57am

            Re: Re: Serving the market

            "Twitter is too left, Facebook is too left, for America, and for me."

            So? Nobody gives a shit what you think, and Twitter and Facebook had massive amounts of users who don't give a shit what the US wants either.

            The question is why you are such a baby that you sit around whining about their political leanings rather than use a competing service that agrees with you.

            "Parler will be the American echo chamber"

            So, you admit it can never be the size of Facebook, even if every American agrees in lockstep with what's on there (hint: they won't)?

            I suspect that the real issue is that you have been forced to step outside of your own echo chamber, and can't deal with how pathetically tiny your actual community is compared to those frequented by sane people.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 2:59am

              Re: Re: Re: Serving the market

              How did the baby almost get her and her mom kicked out of the crowded theater?
              She yelled “pacifire”.

              That's a joke just for you, Techdirt.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • icon
            Uriel-238 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 1:46am

            "Lets just imagine"

            See, that's the problem right there. While I can imagine a nation of laws, I know from experience that is not the nation we have.

            So yeah, in your happy capitalism fantasy, Parler might be able to fulfill that unmet need and not get forced out by anticompetitive practices (and massive legal warchests which Facebook and Twitter would totally turn on Parler if it ever became a remote threat). In a fair market Charles Goodyear might not have died penniless and Parler might thrive.

            Here IRL Walmart wins because Walmart has more money and can move into a region and undersell all the small businesses.

            Facebook is big enough to feed the entire planet with its profits, and it's a curiosity of human nature why companies with the power to have world-changing ambitions fail to consider it. It's not like Zuckerberg and company need the money. But they'll use that money to roll over threats like Russian T-34s moving into Berlin. Like Parlor if it ever gets a noticeable share of the social media market.

            Also here IRL, I'm pretty sure only billionaires and close friends of billionaires get to become President of the United States. Neither I nor my grandson will qualify by orders of magnitude.

            Keep praying, though. I'm sure Someone listening highly regards your opinion regarding Their divine plan. If you pray hard enough and long enough, they might even modify their plan to your benefit.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

            • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
              identicon
              Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 2:58am

              Re: "Lets just imagine"

              Right. Happy capitalism fantasy. Welcome to my life. I started with nothing, an absent father, I had behavior problems in school, people making fun of my rag tag appearance and refusing to cut my hair or trim my nails or brush my teeth, but in America, you can still win! I learned to program, and then suddenly everyone wanted MY HELP to solve their STUPID technical problems because they were too STUPID to figure out the difference between an unsigned character and a negative number. How dumb is that? Anyway, yes, now I'm rich, I'm living near the beach, there are literally hundreds of ladies who will suck my dick for a few pesos right down the block, and LIFE IS GOOD! Quit being so pessimistic, you're too well spoken for that. Cheer up! Come over to Parler, you'll fit right in. We're just stock full of highly intelligent and accomplished, thoughtful writers like you, you'll LOVE IT! Really! I'll sponsor you.

              reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • icon
                Stephen T. Stone (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:42am

                I'm rich, I'm living near the beach, there are literally hundreds of ladies who will suck my dick for a few pesos right down the block, and LIFE IS GOOD!

                If you can roam among the stars, why are you down here in the gutter?

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • identicon
                  Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:47am

                  Re:

                  Community Service. I have faith in truth, justice, and the American way of life.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  PaulT (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 6:13am

                  Re:

                  Because if he goes outside, he'll realise that his fantasies are not real?

                  I'll just note that in his bizarre rants about how great America is, he mentions "pesos". Meaning that if he's even remotely truthful about anything he's saying, he telling everyone he fled the country to take advantage of cheap sex trafficking.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

                • icon
                  Toom1275 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 9:25am

                  Re:

                  Woody can never leave the gutter, because he is the gutter.

                  Techdirt comments would never become a cesspool without him.

                  reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

              • identicon
                Anonymous Coward, 2 Jul 2020 @ 5:45pm

                Re: Re: "Lets just imagine"

                I started with nothing, an absent father

                So much for the heritage of Alexander Hamilton.

                I had behavior problems in school, people making fun of my rag tag appearance and refusing to cut my hair or trim my nails or brush my teeth

                Now, that is halfway plausible. It's been very clear since Day 1 of your shilling for Shiva Ayyadurai that you were a scumbag so fucked in the head, if you had a brain it'd be pregnant with octuplets.

                reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • icon
        bhull242 (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 6:07am

        Re: Re: A safe space

        I take exception to being called an anti-vaxxer. Did you miss the fact that the article with the most comments on it was about vaccines, where many of us argued with an anti-vaxxer on the issue?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    techflaws (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 6:07am

    It's just that in Parler's case, because it called attention to the
    claims that it would not moderate, it's having to go through the
    learning curve in record time

    Maybe they can learn from Mr. Monk.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aMBlEzcvAe8

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    algebrat (profile), 2 Jul 2020 @ 7:45am

    Antifa on Parler

    I did note that message from Parler's CEO at the time it was posted. My take was he is applying Trump's suggesting that he would designate Antifa as a terrorist group. This indicates to me, Parler's governing principles are not a matter of law, but a matter of knee-jerk, reactionary, and arbitrary pronouncements that feel right.

    Antifa, as it is...whatever it is, does not meet the F the T or the O, that would define a FTO. But that wouldn't stop Trump from declaring it, and Parler's CEO from applying a threat that can't be implemented to those in his personal playground.

    Worse still is a CEO just shitting out a harebrained, threatening post like this for general consumption. The cult was super excited to read it and commented as much.

    That the idea is inoperable, against the stated principles of the site, and a clear "tell" of what Parler actually is.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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