📈 Amid moderation issues, conservative social media networks are on the rise

How do you avoid Facebook and Twitter and their various strategies for moderating and censoring content? 

By migrating elsewhere. That’s what conservative politicians are trying, although these new websites may have to face the same legal consequences for questionable content as everyone else in the future.

Ever heard of Parler or Rumble?: They are the conservative-favored versions of Twitter and YouTube. Rumble was expected to have 80 million unique visitors in November, up from 40 million in the summer. The user bases of Parler and Rumble have increased after Twitter and YouTube have tried harder to weed out misinformation, particularly with the baseless conspiracy QAnon. 

Rumble has an early-tech strategy: Its CEO told the Washington Post the platform’s moderation plans are similar to what its social media peers had 10 years ago. Obscene content is not allowed, but falsehoods are fair game. “We’re an open platform,” he said. 

But what if federal law on content moderation changes? 

Both Republican and Democratic politicians want to alter Section 230 and create more specific guidelines under which publishers will have to moderate content. Republicans favor less moderation and Democrats more moderation.

  • If the latter model prevails as part of a new law, likely all internet websites would be covered. Sites like Parler and Rumble would have to be consistent with their moderation techniques and potentially face consequences for what is published on their platforms -- just like every other site.  

The Verdict

Before any legal changes get decided, Big Tech may have to worry about an eroded user base. The rising popularity of Parler and Rumble may influence the legal policies tech companies are comfortable with moving forward.