James Belchamber

Fascist-speech social media site "Parler" is a high-profile treasure trove

In May last year Twitter decided to place a small flag underneath a post by Donald Trump, which suggested that his claims of massive fraud in the 2020 election (which hadn't happened yet) were "potentially misleading". This substantial understatement from a platform that had otherwise only lightly moderated their platform led to enough outrage that alt-right figures surged towards "free-speech" platform Parler. But in the aftermath of the terrorist attack on the Capitol building, this platform - at the centre of the insurrection - quickly collapsed in on itself.

In the ensuing wreckage is a goldmine of information for any Liberal - let's take a look.

The masks were off

As one could imagine from a community that managed to get banned from Twitter, conversation was a cesspool. Calls for murder, rape and torture of "lefties", Liberals, Democrats, "Commies" and "Marxists" were common, and not removed or moderated. I won't link this content here. Fascinatingly, many of these were from "verified citizens" - people that had provided proof of ID, so that they may stand by these words (data that may now be in the public domain - read on).

However, this might lull you in to a belief that Parler truly was a free speech platform - a bubble I am about to burst.

"Free speech? No thanks"

In what would be a surprise to nobody that's paying attention to what the right actually believe, Parler actually had a very strong moderation system - which would serve to keep out dissent and keep everyone "on-message":

https://twitter.com/donk_enby/status/1347939939120533506

This is very similar to what we've seen from other alt-right platforms, such as the /r/The_Donald subreddit - and should be a wake-up call to anyone still not awakened to this fact: The right do not care about free speech. They think YOU care, and so they plan on using that against you (remember: Liberals are under no obligation to tolerate intolerance).

The many, many Tory MPs on the platform

From the very beginning, Parler was known as an alternative to Twitter where alt-right, antisemitic, anti-feminist and Islamophobic content could flourish. As such, you would expect no discerning member of parliament to have signed up, right? Wrong!

https://twitter.com/AlfonsoBonzo/status/1348404788615143428

Fair warning: not all of these have been verified - but we know at least some of them are real because they tweeted about it when they joined, including:

Feel free to see who else you can find in the comments. Oh, and one other thing you might want to explore..

The whole thing has been archived, extensively

For anyone worried they'd miss out on catching the hottest takes (or compiling evidence of the many, many pieces of criminal evidence on the platform, it has all been archived - along with user location data:

https://twitter.com/donk_enby/status/1347896132798533632

As Liberals we stand for equality before the law - as such, everyone with the power to do so will be digging through this treasure trove of information to ensure everyone involved in terrorism will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

For the rest of us, this serves as another source for understanding - and starting to unpick - the influence and power of our greatest enemy: the right.

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