Can we all agree that American social media has gone bonkers?
I’m hoping that the new voice social media app “Clubhouse” will fix the divide, brings us closer together again, and enable conversations as opposed to divisive memes.
The other issue that’s worth exploring is that most of these American companies have to comply with three-letter agency requests and essentially give up the goods on any users. You can thank the very unpatriotic “Patriot Act” for that. It’s also a reason that most of the free world doesn’t trust American message apps like WhatsApp for privacy. But this is a conversation worth having for another day.
Let’s talk about Parler now.
When Twitter banned President Trump, it drove many users to dump the platform in favor of substitutes like Parler. Parler was boosted by a rush of conservatives, long penalized for their views, to a free and open app that doesn’t punish based on anti-conservative bias. The problem is that it’s going to mostly attract a — probably exclusively — conservative base which does little to bridge the divide in America and a lot to further it.
Anytime you have places like this they just add to what behavioral economists call “contact bias.”
It’s why New Yorkers and the LA crowd were shocked when Trump was first elected president. “How could this be?! All my friends in New York voted Democrat!” a shocked majority of New Yorkers said loudly over a rare brunch indoors.
This is the danger of hanging out with people who only share one viewpoint and why I personally try and build bridges to respectful groups with diverse opinions and viewpoints that don’t always match my own.
Clubhouse, the new social app, has been an amazing place for this, I’d encourage you all to join and I am working on a SOFREP club on the platform, so be on the lookout. I’m @brandontwebb. If you’re on Clubhouse already, please look me up.
So what is the solution to the Parler effect? It would be great to hear your thoughts in the comments. I’m not sure exactly what the best plan is; I just know that we need to talk to each other. If we don’t, we’ll find ourselves further divided in America at a time when we have incredibly tough challenges ahead like healthcare, education, and an income gap that looks worse than mother Russia’s. The only thing I’m sure of is that leaving it up to elected officials is a disaster.
It’s going to take leadership outside of politics to solve these problems and the conversation has to start now.