Did you know there are bad people on Twitter and Facebook? I had to ban a few Nazis from commenting on my Facebook page, and I had to block a few Nazis on Twitter. I even had to ban a few Nazis from commenting on my blog. This is not name calling on my part: These were people who were actually praising Adolf Hitler and telling me to read Mein Kampf to educate myself. It’s possible they were trolls, but either way they are nasty people. Praising the Holocaust is morally abominable, whether it is serious or a “joke.”
Of course, there are bad people on any social networking site of any size. Once you give the public a platform, there will inevitably be bad actors in the group. Before social media, this was the case in forums, blog hosting and any other type of interactive content provider. Before the Internet, any group of any size will have bad people in it. We see this in schools, workplaces, clubs, and social circles.
This brings me to recent attacks on Parler at The Bulwark. It is very easy to engage in “nutpicking” – the practice of finding a few wackos to tar a large group. But that is a poor argument, especially on a platform of over one and a half million users. Since The Bulwark has defended the right of social media platforms to censor unwelcome content, where do they suggest conservatives silenced by Big Tech go? Since The Bulwark is opposed to alternatives, the answer apparently is “shut up.”
The Bulwark loves to virtue signal and punch right, but I cannot help but be amused by an alternative media site complaining about conservatives going to an alternative social networking site. The attacks on Parler seem more motivated as another chance to speak against Trump and his supporters than legitimate objections to the existence of an alternative to Twitter and Facebook.