Politically Hot Shotting Alternate Social Media Going As Well As You Might Expect

Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonder and Home. Andrew is the host of Heard Tell podcast.

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48 Responses

  1. Philip H
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    says:

    Thoughts and prayers.Report

  2. Michael Cain
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    In the economics of telephony and related services, there’s a thing called “the network effect.” It says that the value of the service provided by a communications network increases more than linearly with the number of customers using the service. Early telephone companies figured out that they needed to interconnect and have a single consistent numbering plan. Enterprise-only e-mail, despite having a greater range of capabilities, lost out to foo@bar.com internet e-mail because being able to send to everyone was more valuable than those other capabilities. The value of the Facebook service is that almost everyone is on. A few people might move exclusively to Parler, but only a subset of their friends and families will. The initial surge will tend to die out.

    Yesterday the Senate Judiciary passed out an antitrust bill sponsored by Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA) that would effectively require Apple, Meta (Facebook), Amazon, and Alphabet (Google) to separate the platform and application portions of their businesses. I will be fascinated to see how far up the software stack they try to push “platform”. Eg, is Facebook a platform, or is the platform only the very large compute and storage farms it runs on? What role will forced interoperability serve (eg, Facebook must provide an open and consistent interface so that Parler users and Facebook users experience the same set of features)?

    The DOJ tried this with Microsoft back in the late 1990s. In that case, they defined desktop PC operating systems as a market, Windows as a “monopoly” product in that market, and Internet Explorer an application which had been illegally integrated into Windows. Most of us thought the case would end with the judge holding that desktop OSs wasn’t a market. Once he did, Microsoft was quite clearly in violation of the antitrust laws. The DOJ went on to win the court case and then, in sequence, (a) the judge ordered the company split in two, (b) George W. Bush won the 2000 election, and (c) the new DOJ withdraw support for the split during the appeal and the judge accepted the slap on the wrist the new DOJ wanted instead.Report

  3. Pinky
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    The WaPo article (or at least this excerpt) doesn’t understand the dynamic involved.

    To steal Jaybird’s formulation for political campaigns, right-wing outlets are looking to connect with their base and to expand into the normie market. Left-wing outlets are looking to connect with their base, expand, and shut down opposing outlets.

    That said, the alternatives that spring up provide the right with an initial home base and the hope of an expanding base. A lot of righties will get on every site when it comes out, as part of their backup plans, but then not encounter anything on those sites that they can’t find anywhere else. The sites do accomplish their first goal, but not their second.

    It should be noted that Joe Rogan is bigger than anything (not a rightie, but an alternative voice who isn’t afraid of the left), and many right-wing sites are doing quite well. I’m impressed with The Daily Wire, which is gearing up to be a news, sports, opinion, and entertainment outfit with direct registration, which allows them to adapt to any platform.Report

    • Philip H in reply to Pinky
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      Joe Rogan is bigger than anything (not a rightie, but an alternative voice who isn’t afraid of the left),

      Care to expand on this? Because while I agree he loves taking on the left, he comes across as very much a rightie.Report

      • Pinky in reply to Philip H
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        Rogan is willing to hear out anyone on his show, and he’ll find some common ground. He’s also not ideological. Those things make it hard to classify him. You have to be pretty far to one side to consider Rogan part of the other.Report

        • Dopefish in reply to Pinky
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          Joe Rogan is noncompliant. This angers many people who want authoritarian rule, including Philip.Report

          • Philip H in reply to Dopefish
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            says:

            Joe Rogan happily platforms people who lie regularly about COVID. That angers me. It should anger you.Report

            • Dopefish in reply to Philip H
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              says:

              What you consider a lie, and I consider a lie, are probably two different matters.
              THISISANHTTPSLINK:www.cdc.gov/library/covid19/pdf/2020-09_08-Science-Update_FINAL_public-v2.pdf

              It is not arguable that Pfizer is unprosecutable for vaccine-related injuries (due to Brandon’s imprudent administration). Judges are kind of upset about this, as you might imagine.Report

              • Philip H in reply to Dopefish
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                It is not arguable that Pfizer is unprosecutable for vaccine-related injuries (due to Brandon’s imprudent administration). Judges are kind of upset about this, as you might imagine.

                Nope.

                Under the Secretary of Health and Human Services’ (HHS’s) PREP Act Declaration for COVID-19 (and
                its amendments), COVID-19 vaccines are covered countermeasures within the PREP Act’s scope. As a
                result, CICP—and not VICP—will apply to injuries resulting from COVID-19 vaccinations while the public health emergency persists and the Declaration remains in force. Compensation through CICP is generally somewhat more limited than through VICP.

                https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/LSB/LSB10584Report

              • Dopefish in reply to Philip H
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                says:

                Please, read what I have to say. Then recognize that you’re not disagreeing with me.

                Pfizer’s decision-making changed because they were no longer able to be sued, by Americans. CICP/VICP are governmental programs.

                Pfizer didn’t want to see an asbestos situation, and lobbied Brandon hard to get liability waivers.

                After they did so, they changed their product delivery to go with the “less safe” but also “much cheaper” delivery method. In other words, “The Jab!”

                This is because of their fiduciary loyalty to their stockholders. They could no longer make the argument that “this costs more, but in the long run…”

                **Conflict of Interest Disclosure.**
                IANAL.Report

              • DensityDuck in reply to Dopefish
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                a) Pfizer submitted the NDA and received approval during the Trump administration so I’m not sure what Biden had to do with this, unless you’re suggesting that there was some evil secret quid-pro-quo happening, perhaps in a booth at some pizza place outside Walkerton Indiana

                b) you do your argument no favors by saying “Brandon”, and yes, sweetie, I know, You’re Just Poasting, but surely there are video games to play that would be more fun for you than this?Report

            • dhex in reply to Philip H
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              says:

              “noncompliant” is doing a lot of heavy lifting there, hoss. but so is calling him a “rightie” which doesn’t really capture the lack of ideological depth (or depth in general).

              it’s more like he’s random, which is not great if you’re into consistency or really want others to be consistent.

              he’ll let anyone blather on, which has produced some intriguing moments (bernie, hamilton morris, some of the anti-scientology guests, many of the comedians, etc) and far less good with snapperheads like alex jones and related cranks and frauds.

              his randomness is a lot like the population at large, frankly. a lot of tendencies and impulses, not a lot of theory or consistency underpinning said tendencies and impulses. there’s a bernie sympatico-ness there, a sort of populist-ish routine.Report

              • InMD in reply to dhex
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                says:

                He is a reminder that out there, beyond the black mirror, there is a much more heterodox but also kind of ho-hum world. More people still live there than anywhere else.Report

              • Saul Degraw in reply to InMD
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                says:

                Heterodox is kind. I prefer inconsistent or all over the map. Inchoate also works.Report

              • InMD in reply to Saul Degraw
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                says:

                That’s fair. I don’t listen to the guy. But a lot of people do and I don’t get the sense that they all think of what they’re hearing in super hard ideological terms. It’s possible to find something interesting or appealing in some way without buying all of it hook line and sinker.

                It’s worth remembering that the population is, to use your words, kind of inchoate and all over the map. I think it’s a mistake to view that as inherently threatening. At best it makes enemies of people who don’t need to be and at worst resembles a sort of ‘everyone who listens to Ozzy Osbourne is going to turn into a baby eating satanist’ kind of thinking.Report

    • Dopefish in reply to Pinky
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      says:

      RIP Trevor Moore. Your death was useless and futile.Report

      • Pinky in reply to Dopefish
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        says:

        I had no idea. I loved WKUK. How does his death tie into the topic, though?Report

        • Dopefish in reply to Pinky
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          says:

          Joe Rogan was a proud anti-vaccination voice.
          Trevor Moore’s death was ordered in order to “send a message” to Rogan.Report

          • Pinky in reply to Dopefish
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            says:

            That’s nuts.Report

            • Philip H in reply to Pinky
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              says:

              Nah, its just the other side of the issue. Which MUST be presented in a fair and balanced manner. Or so Fox News tells us.Report

              • Pinky in reply to Philip H
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                says:

                You’re just tearing down straw men as fast as you can put them up, aren’t you?Report

              • JS in reply to Pinky
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                says:

                Are you accusing Philip of sock-puppetry?Report

              • Philip H in reply to JS
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                says:

                Of course he is. Its all he has . . . .Report

              • Jaybird in reply to JS
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                Strawmanning and sock puppetry are two different things.Report

              • Pinky in reply to JS
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                says:

                Jaybird is right. The term “sock-puppetry” has a meaning, and it’s not the thing I accused Philip of. I believe that Philip is a real person, or rather that “Philip H” is a persona created by one person who posts here with only one name.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Pinky
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                Is it really a strawman?

                I don’t listen to Joe Rogan, and have no clue who Trevor Moore is or what it refers to, so I am wondering-
                Is this referring to some bizarre conspiracy theory?

                Just how bizarre does a theory have to be where Joe Rogan, the guy who entertains all sorts of theories, will refuse to entertain it?

                Seriously, where are the boundaries of where the IDW/ Quillette/ Just Asking Questions crowd will Stop Asking Questions?Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                The straw man (men?) is the lumping together of Fox News and its slogan “fair and balanced”, Joe Rogan, and Dopefish’s conspiracy. To be a viewer of Fox News, or the kind of person that Philip associates with Fox News, is to be lumped in (there’s a better word but I’m drawing a blank on it) with every extremist.

                A lot of people watch Fox News for the news. A lot watch for the opinion, and a lot of those disagree with each other. A lot of people listen to Rogan. Some probably agree with every guest, no matter how contradictory they might be from the last one. I’d guess that most enjoy his style and the variety, and are neither offended by opinions that differ from theirs nor afraid of turning off the podcast if the guest is kooky without being entertaining.

                Philip has no knowledge of this, by his own admission. But he saw an opportunity to lump things together (conflate! that’s the word!) and took it. No matter that he threw the idea of listening to different opinions overboard, but I don’t think he was ever too wedded to that idea anyway.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Pinky
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                Honest question, if Dopefish were a prominent pundit or author, would he be the sort that would be invited on Rogan’s show and allowed to expound?

                Maybe? Maybe not? Like I said, I don’t listen to Rogan, but what I do know is he hosted Alex Berenson, who is every bit as deranged as any internet commenter.

                I’m reminded of that quote, something about how if you host a site safe from witchhunts, you end up with a few free speech advocates and a hundred witches.

                Joe Rogan is no different than any other talk show host where he and his producers set boundaries and limits to what they consider acceptable viewpoints and refuse to invite anyone from outside those boundaries.

                And we know that a deranged anti-vaxx nut is safely within those acceptable boundaries, so why not Dopefish, or Holocaust deniers or NAMBLA advocates for that matter?Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                I don’t know enough about Dopefish or Rogan to answer that. Even if the answer is “yes”, though, it wouldn’t justify what Philip did by conflating an outlandish internet comment and anyone who tries to look at both sides of an issue.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Pinky
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                says:

                He conflated Fox News and Joe Rogan which seems fair since they both present openly anti-vax nuts and crank conspiracists under the claim of presenting both sides in a “fair and balanced manner.”Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                The fallacy of “everybody who doesn’t agree with me can be assumed to agree with each other” is showing up more and more.

                It’s a mistake.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Jaybird
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                says:

                Heh, I could see Fox becoming more Roganish over time as they move on younger demographics…Not the other way ’round, though. But I wouldn’t conflate Fox and Rogan now. Rogan might be bigger and has a much larger cross-over… he’s in already in the Dem base killin ur doodz.Report

              • InMD in reply to Marchmaine
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                says:

                Your average Fox viewer is Medicare eligible. Your average Rogan listener is less than 5 years removed from taking bong rips in a dorm room at state college. In fact they might still be taking bong rips in a crummy house or apartment with the 3 other dudes they live with.Report

              • Pinky in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                I think we’ve already established that I don’t agree with your conflations of opponents. I personally don’t know if Fox News has anti-vax nuts and crank conspiracists; nor is Joe Rogan strictly an anti-vax and conspiracy show. I’d venture that JS isn’t the only one who considers this site to be a home of anti-vax and conspiracy talk.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Pinky
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                I personally don’t know if Fox News has anti-vax nuts and crank conspiracists

                Yes you do.Report

              • InMD in reply to Chip Daniels
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                This is the kind of error I was trying to get at above with Saul. Maybe there’s some overlapping content, but the Joe Rogan demographic is men in their 20s. The Fox News demographic is people over 60.

                That alone I would say makes them pretty distinct groups and distinct media. This is easy stuff to figure out and I really don’t get the mentality that insists they must be the same.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to InMD
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                says:

                How did age enter the discussion?

                Both Rogan and Fox are hosts of anti-vax and conspiracy nuts.Report

              • InMD in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Sure, and in a way both Saving Private Ryan and the GI Joe cartoon are about intrepid American soldiers saving the world. Yet if we were comparing them I think we can agree it would be foolish not to notice some important differences, not least of which is the intended audience. That’s particularly the case if how the audience reacts to the content is an important part of the discussion.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to InMD
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                Why is the audience demographic more important than the fact that both are promoting a similar viewpoint of anti-vax and conspiracist nuttery?

                The original contention was that it was unfair to conflate Fox and Rogan, in the context of Dopefish tossing out some conspiracy nuttery.

                The conflation about viewpoint nuttery seems entirely on point and fair, while the objection about demographics seems entirely irrelevant.Report

              • InMD in reply to Chip Daniels
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                says:

                Because it suggests you might not know what you’re talking about?Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Chip Daniels
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                Who are these Young Turks people anyway?
                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D8nbZZx6nu4

                Rogan is so weird on so many issues, that picking one thing and saying everyone is therefore on team Rogan? It doesn’t even pass the Young Turk test.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Marchmaine
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                Which is why I didn’t say that.

                I’m just saying that if two groups promote nuttery the differences between them are less important than what they share.Report

              • Brandon Berg in reply to Philip H
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                As a proponent of crank ideologies like CRT and socialism, you really have no basis for smugness here. You’re sneering into a mirror.Report

  4. JS
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    says:

    I’ve noticed a real influx of crazies or trolls lately.

    At one point we had one person posting under multiple shifting IDs, and I’m pretty sure there’s another that posts under two or three.

    Where’s the noise coming from?Report

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