What is Parler? And Why Are Some Of Your Friends Going There?
If you are like me, you've probably seen some of you friends on Facebook and Twitter announce that they are headed to a new social media platform called Parler. The amount of people on Facebook declaring a defection towards Parler has increased dramatically since the weekend.
So what is going on?
Parler is a social media platform that actually launched back in 2018 but within the last year began gaining members for their approach to censorship. According to Parler, there is no censorship on their platform which puts them in direct contrast to Facebook and Twitter which have clamped down on what is posted on their platforms. As Facebook and Twitter have enforced content moderation more and more, Parler has continued to say they will not censor anything on their site unless it is unlawful.
This has made some conservatives flee Facebook and Twitter for now for the platform they believe is more fair and open. The move to Parler really hit on Sunday, the day after the Presidential race was called for Joe Biden by the media.
Since election night, both Facebook and Twitter have sought to censor tweets and Facebook groups that have accused the Democrats of stealing the election. President Trump has seen his Twitter account highly censored by Twitter over the last week. All of this has lead to an explosion of new members at Parler who are looking for a censorship-free platform as an alternative to Twitter and Facebook.
According to Syracuse.com, the popularity of Parler has really gained traction since Saturday.
Newsweek reports Parler, a social platform pitched as an alternative to Facebook and Twitter, rose to No. 1 on the Apple and Google download charts over the past week and still sits in the top spot Monday. Analytics firm SensorTower said the app had attracted around 200,000 downloads last month, but may have seen even more as the presidential election swung in favor of Joe Biden.
The Washington Post said the app had 2.8 million users in July, but Parler CEO John Matze announced Sunday that the company had received 2 million new accounts: “We expected a million or so people today... but 2? You guys are crazy.”
Some have called Parler, the conservative Twitter, and yes it's mainly conservative voices that dominate the app, but Parler says it's app is open for anyone looking for free-speech.
It remains to be seen whether Parler will truly do battle with Facebook and Twitter. Earlier in the year, I remember there being a push to get more people on Parler and that's when Senator Ted Cruz, Senator Rand Paul, Congressman Jodey Arrington, and others joined. But the momentum didn't last.
So is Parler an alternative to Facebook and Twitter? Yes and no. The platform is more like Twitter but with far less users, but that could change. If you like Facebook but can't stand Twitter, Parler may not be your thing.