Trumpian Loudmouths Apparently Losing Interest In Parler With No One To Play Victim To

from the too-bad,-so-sad dept

What a shock. Parler, the site that falsely claimed that it would be the "free speech" alternative to Twitter, but who quickly realized that it was going to have to aggressively ban users as well, is apparently suffering from abandonment. As the Daily Beast reported, many of its most vocal supporters seem to have disappeared from the platform, preferring Twitter instead.

Trump superfan Bill Mitchell, who has amassed more than 580,000 Twitter followers on the strength of his outspoken devotion to the president, tweeted in late June that he was getting better engagement on Parler than he was on Twitter.

But, as of Friday, Mitchell hasn’t posted on Parler for nearly a week—while posting continuously on Twitter.

And others as well:

Other conservative personalities who were part of the June exodus to Parler haven’t stuck around. Allie Beth Stuckey, who has nearly 300,000 Twitter followers and styles herself as the “Conservative Millennial,” tweeted in June about her Parler account. But Stuckey hasn’t stuck around—she last posted on Parler on July 4, even as she has posted dozens of times on Twitter since then.

Stuckey isn’t alone. Trump campaign senior adviser Jason Miller, for example, urged his followers to make Parler accounts in the late-June rush to the site. But Miller hasn’t posted on the site since June 1, even as he prolifically tweets and retweets every day on Twitter.

Meanwhile, the article notes that (just as we said over here on Techdirt) that people -- including ideological supporters of Trump and his fans -- are realizing that Parler isn't any more supportive or against free speech than Twitter. The Washington Examiner had a piece saying (correctly) that Parler is not the free speech utopia Trump allies hoped for, and other Trump supporters are explaining how Parler is "anything but" free speech supportive.

Of course, this isn't a huge surprise. The glee over Parler was mainly over the fact that assholes seemed to want freedom to be assholes for the sake of "triggering" people. It's all performative. But if the people they're trying to annoy are elsewhere, they're just playing the clown for themselves, and what fun is that?

Still, it appears that with Twitter's recent (totally justified) decision to remove accounts spreading QAnon conspiracy fan fiction, it's likely that Parler will get a new burst of life as a place to spread nonsense conspiracy theories...

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Filed Under: competition, social media
Companies: parler, twitter


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  1. identicon
    Bruce C., 24 Jul 2020 @ 9:43am

    "Fan fiction"...

    I'm going to start using that. Gave me a good chuckle.

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

  2. icon
    Koby (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 9:58am

    Killer App

    Large online communities beget larger online communities. I figured that there was a good chance that something like this would happen to Parler, where you can't reach critical mass enough to attract a huge audience.

    One of the key problems it seems for the content producers who support alternative platforms is that they have to duplicate their work. If Parler, or any other alternative social network wants to make a dent in the current near-monopoly situation, then what they should do is create a client app that can login and post across multiple platforms simultaneously. As an added benefit, it would REALLY ruffle some feathers for another dose of publicity.

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

  3. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:06am

    I guess Parler users figured out they couldn’t have fun ranting about SJWs and Repugnant Cultural Others when those groups wouldn’t/didn’t show up to “fight back”.

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

  4. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:06am

    Seems appropriate...

    So Parler is waving the white flag?

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

  5. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:08am

    Re:

    They did show up. And the Parler folks had the momentary catharsis of banning them. Then that catharsis faded and they were left with no libs to own. Sad.

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

  6. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:11am

    Parler didn’t hit “critical mass” because it only ever appealed to a small subset of social media users. Everyone knew it was meant to be a service friendly to the “freeze peach” crowd, and everyone that wasn’t part of said crowd knew enough to stay far the hell away.

    As for the “making a dent” thing: Cross-platform posting apps already exist. If they don’t “help” now, what makes you think they’ll “help” in the future?

    (Also, yes or no: Should services like Twitter be forced by law to host all legally protected speech?)

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

  7. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:13am

    Well, at least that gives them something else in common with the Confederacy. Besides “leaving a bigger group to form a smaller, failed group” and “filled with racists”, that is.

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

  8. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:15am

    Re: Killer App

    Back to the Trillian days?

    All of this has happened before...

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

  9. identicon
    Paul B, 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:20am

    Re: Seems appropriate...

    The white flag would imply they are under attack. Instead they are ignored.

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

  10. icon
    Koby (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:21am

    Re: Re: Killer App

    Exactly. If the major content producers with tons of followers had such an app, the abandonment problem that Parler experienced would go away. Also, just like the Trillian days, I expect twitter to make a big stink about it. Monopolies hate interoperability.

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

  11. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:27am

    Who would have guessed?

    Fill a site with all the scum, bigots and other flavors of loser and they're the only ones who want to stick around, such that the only people they have to 'show off' to are like minded losers which isn't nearly as fun.

    As expected, they may have launched with much fanfare as being a true 'free speech site'(read: feel free to be a raging asshole) but it looks like it will end with a whimper as those that proudly boasted about how amazing the new platform would be crawl back to the current social media platforms where everyone is and pretend that nothing at all happened.

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

  12. icon
    Strawb (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:27am

    It seems it was just a...

    Parler trick.

    I'll see myself out.

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

  13. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:28am

    If the major content producers with tons of followers had such an app, the abandonment problem that Parler experienced would go away.

    Crossposting wouldn’t, and can’t, guarantee the success of any social media platform that isn’t an entrenched “major player”. People could make a Twitter/Gab crossposter, but that wouldn’t make Gab any less of an alt-right shitpit.

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

  14. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:28am

    As well you should.

    🙃

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

  15. icon
    arp2 (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:39am

    Re:

    More than that, they couldn't play the victim. Without being able to claim that they're being censored and with no 'libs' to troll, what's the point of their (online) existence?

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

  16. icon
    justok (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 10:43am

    Re:

    Plenty of people will help you.

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

  17. icon
    Bloof (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:09am

    The average conservative needs the captive audience of friends, family and co-workers for their bullpoop, so as much as they moan about being oppressed by being expected to follow the rules of the platform, they're not going to a place where all they're doing is shouting into the void. Big name conservative talking heads are only interested in being somewhere they have that audience so they were never seriously going to Parler either, they were hoping they could use the threatened mass exodus to get extra special treatment they get on top of the special treatment they already receive. Twitter, like so many major companies, know that conservative boycott don't work, they've threatened them dozens of times a month since the 90s and so far the only things they've harmed are themselves setting cereal on fire, and the career of the Dixie Chicks.

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

  18. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:34am

    Re: Killer App

    then what they should do is create a client app that can login and post across multiple platforms simultaneously

    Parler's app would get instantly blocked from Facebook and Twitter. Their EULAs prevent such things.

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

  19. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:35am

    Re: Re:

    You could have left out the "(online)".

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

  20. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:38am

    Re: Who would have guessed?

    The comments sections on Breitbart belie your theory. Non-alt-right viewpoints are silenced very, very quickly there yet there are still hundreds to thousands of comments on every article, all a bunch of mouth breathers agreeing with each other.

    I don't know why Parler is failing but I don't think this article and comments saying it was a lack of "libs" to argue with is the cause. Clearly the low-IQ half of the nation enjoys endlessly patting each other on the backs for being assholes.

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

  21. icon
    Koby (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:46am

    Re: Re: Killer App

    I guess that's why it would make such a stink, and also why there were constant interoperability wars back then. The IM servers couldn't stop a 3rd party client from logging into the servers without requiring an update to their own client program, but the 3rd party clients couldn't stop the service from constantly updating the client for a new form of validation.

    And all of that turned out to be a massive financial mistake, as eventually Facebook reached critical mass. The IM market could have earned billions had they worked together.

    Such app blocking might also risk generating an antitrust inquiry.

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

  22. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:47am

    This is why deplatforming works. Because as much as they bitch about needing "free speech," what they really want is an audience. They want to be able to force others to listen to them. They want ease of access to as many ears and eyes as possible.

    They confuse the right to speak with the right to force others to listen. This is also why their battle cry of "free speech!" is disingenuous - because they hold that only their own speech is important.

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

  23. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:50am

    If the reason for their staying on Twitter over Parler isn’t “a lack of libs”, it is definitely the “sunken cost” fallacy. People like the ones mentioned in the article can’t bear to part ways with their existing (and potential) Twitter audience in favor of a smaller audience on Parler. That their Parler posts were likely to get less overall media attention than their Twitter posts probably played a role, too.

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

  24. identicon
    Coffee U, 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:53am

    Why Parler anyways?

    Wasn't Gab supposed to the be alt-right twitter? Whatever happened to that?

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

  25. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:55am

    Such app blocking might also risk generating an antitrust inquiry.

    I don’t see why. Twitter isn’t, and shouldn’t be, forced to interoperate with any other social media service. For what reason should Twitter admins ever allow Gab to backdoor itself into Twitter by way of crossposting — either by voluntary decision or by force of law?

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

  26. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 11:57am

    It turned into the alt-right Mastodon.

    Then the vast majority of the Fediverse defederated with all Gab-based instances as soon as they possibly could.

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

  27. icon
    That One Guy (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 12:25pm

    Re:

    Almost as though that 'free market' thing took one look at what they were selling and decided that they didn't want to get anywhere near it...

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

  28. identicon
    Pixelation, 24 Jul 2020 @ 12:58pm

    Sad it didn't work out.

    A bunch of right wing blowhards took their toys and went to Parler. No one gave a shit. Unfortunately, they are back.

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

  29. icon
    Stephen T. Stone (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 12:58pm

    …which is why you now have people like Koby saying “Twitter should interoperate with other social media services”: They didn’t like who won out in the free market.

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

  30. icon
    ECA (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 1:08pm

    Re:

    interesting thought.
    But there are legalities to think about..
    truth over BS, is one of them.

    Another that is interesting is having your OWN, designed site.
    For those that Only wish to speak, about certain things, and SPREAD the BS, no fact checking. 2 things about that.

    Everyone agreeing to you isnt a conversation.Might as well talk to yourself.
    And, if you are going to allow EVERYONE, you cant complain when others contest what you are saying. AND you cant kick them off.

    And a 3rd, is DMCA. If someone complains about your post(even a fake) your POST GOES DOWN, according to the laws recently created.

    WE had something like this in the past, it was a religious war of Christians..Lutheran, baptist, Quaker, and 40 others.. All for a different view...Many died.

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

  31. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 1:16pm

    The learning opportunities here are:

    (for speakers) Abusive speech leads to loss of audience. The Internet, wonderful as it is, can't override cosmic reality. Be a jerk all you want, in the privacy of your own cranial cavity. Elsewhere, courtesy makes you more welcome. Being a public jerk just means people find ways to look the other direction. People are VERY good at finding such ways.)

    (for platforms) Offer something people want, or they go away. Offer something lots of people want, or learn to live with a small community.

    (for anti-trust lawyers) There are natural monopolies (like infrastructures, or perhaps computer operating systems) that you have to (and ought to) watch like a goshawk on ritalin. And there are natural anti-monopolies (like internet sites,search engines, ad-banner-farms AKA comparison shopping sites, community sites) that are so eagerly abandoned by unsatisfied users that watching them come and go is merely a spectator sport, not a legal matter.

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

  32. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Jul 2020 @ 6:09pm

    Re: Killer App

    "Why are my tears so delicious?" asked Koby.

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

  33. icon
    techflaws (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 9:49pm

    Re:

    I see this is the umpteenth time you're asking Koby the same question, rest assured we see he's chickening out as usual.

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

  34. icon
    techflaws (profile), 24 Jul 2020 @ 9:52pm

    Trump superfan Bill Mitchell, who has amassed more than 580,000 > Twitter followers on the strength of his outspoken devotion to the
    president

    Outspoke devotion aka 'colon dweller' like Hannity?

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

  35. icon
    PaulT (profile), 25 Jul 2020 @ 1:16am

    Re: Killer App

    "Large online communities beget larger online communities"

    Yes, so then they tell the people who disrupt everybody else to GTFO.

    "I figured that there was a good chance that something like this would happen to Parler, where you can't reach critical mass enough to attract a huge audience."

    ...and the reason for that is that it was full of the toxic scum who got kicked out of everywhere else, so nobody wants to join them.

    Once again, I'm sorry that your fellow Klan members can't get a break among normal people, but there's a very good reason for that.

    "then what they should do is create a client app that can login and post across multiple platforms simultaneously"

    Erm, how would that bypass the need to have a valid account on those platforms that hasn't had you blocked for being an asshole?

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

  36. icon
    PaulT (profile), 25 Jul 2020 @ 1:19am

    Re: Re: Re: Killer App

    As usual, you've formed half a coherent thought but it doesn't hold up to any logical or factual scrutiny.

    Third party clients for Twitter do already exist. However, they neither bypass the need for a valid account on Twitter, nor do they stop your stupid ass getting blocked for violating their T&Cs.

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

  37. icon
    PaulT (profile), 25 Jul 2020 @ 1:22am

    Re: Re: Re: Killer App

    "The IM servers couldn't stop a 3rd party client from logging into the servers without requiring an update to their own client program"

    They couldn't block individual user accounts?

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

  38. icon
    PaulT (profile), 25 Jul 2020 @ 1:24am

    Re: Why Parler anyways?

    "Wasn't Gab supposed to the be alt-right twitter? Whatever happened to that?"

    Same thing. The only people who went there were Nazis who got told they weren't welcome among normal people, then they realised that hanging around with Nazis wasn't fun or profitable.

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

  39. icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 27 Jul 2020 @ 6:00am

    Re: Re: Re: Killer App

    " If the major content producers with tons of followers had such an app, the abandonment problem that Parler experienced would go away."

    A few problems with that, sport.

    Parler actually holds you liable for any potential fiscal loss they stand over publishing whatever you choose to post. They don't make their Q1 plan their clients will be in for it. Twitter does not have the same ToS. When the ToS are different for every platform who'd be dumb enough to auto-duplicate a tweet to platforms which may just send you a whopper of a liability bill over it?

    "Monopolies hate interoperability."

    So they do but until you have clear one-size-fits-all regulations about where and how liability is handled between client and platform you aren't, for practical reasons, going very far with a comment replicator.

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

  40. icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 27 Jul 2020 @ 6:24am

    Re: Re: Re:

    ...he could have left everything which came before "What's" as well.

    Ironically the racists and bigots loudest about libs, black people, women away from the kitchen, gays, etc, would all be living very dreary lives indeed if none of their hate objects were actually present.

    For a few minutes at least. Then they'd tear each other apart over the right way to burn a cross or wear the swastika.

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

  41. icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 27 Jul 2020 @ 6:30am

    Re: Re: Who would have guessed?

    "The comments sections on Breitbart belie your theory."

    Breitbart is still seen as...how do I put it...that place where people can pretend they aren't outright racist, misogynist, or zealous adherents of fascism etc.

    Gab, or for that matter, Parler, seems as if they unwittingly managed to attract the cirque de shit which got thrown out of 4chan once upon a time.

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

  42. icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 27 Jul 2020 @ 6:32am

    Re:

    ...where's Waldorf and Statler when you need them?

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

  43. icon
    Scary Devil Monastery (profile), 27 Jul 2020 @ 6:34am

    Re:

    "They didn’t like the free market."

    FTFY.

    Koby keeps tapdancing around the issue that everything he says simply boils down to "People shouldn't be free to turn their backs on us! And they should give us money! Or else it's not fair!"

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

  44. icon
    Federico (profile), 28 Jul 2020 @ 6:29am

    Re: Crossposting and Twitter

    There are many ways to crosspost already. I use https://moa.party/ to crosspost between Mastodon and Twitter/Instagram accounts of some entities. If Gab is still using Mastodon, you can use such a crossposting software as well.

    Twitter is rather open to crossposting, although it's less open since it shut down RSS. Facebook is more of a mess and Instagram is very aggressive in forcing people to use only their proprietary software to post there (no open APIs to publish), although you can get some stuff out.

    IFTTT is or used to be a popular mainstream way to crosspost across various social media.

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

  45. icon
    PaulT (profile), 28 Jul 2020 @ 7:14am

    Re: Re: Crossposting and Twitter

    "There are many ways to crosspost already"

    ...but none that work in the way that Koby wants. He doesn't want ease of use, he wants to somehow trick Twitter into accepting posts from banned users. Which won't work when the login permissions are on the server end. Whether this is because he actually doesn't know the different between an IM protocol and a system with centralised user management, or because it's part of his whole "Twitter should have zero property rights if my Klan friends get banned" schtick.

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


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