Updated: Feb 4
In the past decade social media has become the go to source for information. According to the Pew Research Center, "One-in-five get their political news from social media" while the actual number is 18% of Americans this trend is growing. In some ways this is a good thing, people have access to a variety of information that in the past was not available unless you subscribed to specific print outlets like newspapers and magazines, had cable/satellite TV, or attended trade shows/conventions. In fact if you needed information, like the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of Zambia you had to visit a library and even then the publication may be a few years old. Now to find information one can simply Google it. With such an amazing power one would believe people would be better informed. Sadly this is the exact opposite because anyone with a computer can now post "information" and everyone has the ability to subscribe to the things they feel are important not publishers, producers, or other gatekeepers.
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Your posts can still be removed and you can be kicked out
According to the user agreement, "Parler may remove any content and terminate your access to the Services at any time and for any reason to the extent Parler reasonably believes (a) you have violated these Terms or Parler’s Community Guidelines, (b) you create risk or possible legal exposure for Parler, or (c) you are otherwise engaging in unlawful conduct—although Parler endeavors to allow all free speech that is lawful and does not infringe the legal rights of others. Any invitation made by Parler to you to use the Services or submit content to the Services, or the fact that Parler may receive a benefit from your use of the Services or provision of content to the Services, will not obligate Parler to maintain any content or maintain your access to the Services. Parler will have no liability to you for removing any content, for terminating your access to the Services, or for modifying or terminating the Services."
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Free Speech means All Speech
The biggest reason some folks are flocking to Parler is the belief other social media, like Facebook or Twitter, is limiting speech because there has been a big push to expose misinformation via third party fact checkers. In their opinion these fact checkers have an agenda or worse, are part of a grand conspiracy to undermine freedom and democracy. While this can be a valid claim, some voices shouldn't been heard among these are those calling for violence, slander of private individuals, and porn. These three things may appear if a subscriber doesn't monitor their follows closely.
Parler is at the Whim of Others
Unlike Facebook or Twitter that have their own servers, Parler is renting theirs from Amazon. In response of the storming of the US Capitol building on Jan. 7th, 2020 by Donald Trump loyalists. Amazon has cited Parler with a violation of their terms and shut the servers that were hosting Parler's service. This has affected it's 10 million subscribers. FAIR USE NOTE: All .gifs are screen shots from "The Pirates of the Caribbean" movie franchise owned and copyrighted by Disney. Use of these elements are used to inform the public on a current news item that the overall public is interested in. No copyright violation is intended by Woodruff Media Management. To learn more about Fair Use criteria please visit https://www.copyright.gov/fair-use/more-info.html
Sources: https://www.journalism.org/2020/07/30/americans-who-mainly-get-their-news-on-social-media-are-less-engaged-less-knowledgeable/ http://legal.parler.com/documents/guidelines.pdf (Accessed 11/10/20) http://legal.parler.com/documents/useragreement.pdf (Accessed 11/10/20) https://www.facebook.com/journalismproject/programs/third-party-fact-checking https://www.newsweek.com/parler-social-media-facebook-twitter-far-right-trump-supporters-john-matze-jared-thomson-1513378 https://www.infowars.com/posts/twitter-facebook-will-censor-election-related-posts/ https://www.spj.org/ethicscode.asp http://handbook.reuters.com/index.php?title=Legal_guidance https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2020/12/02/parler-pornography-problem/ https://www.businessinsider.com/parler-offline-outage-amazon-servers-2021-1