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Serious Tech Question

AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 6,873

This question is coming from a political source, but is NOT political. Keep politics out of this, please.


Big tech is "purging/censoring" differing opinions. Where can people go that Google and the rest of Silicon Valley cannot censor me or I give support to them? I have GMail, but want something else. I deleted my Facebook account decades ago. As Parler showed, anything hosted by Google will be canned if not on their bandwagon.

I wish the free and open exchange of ideas was the norm, but that's now gone from big tech :(

- Al

Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
- FARGIN_WAR


Asheramblamo2000

Comments

  • AsheramAsheram Member EpicPosts: 4,924
    edited January 12
    After what happened last week I dont blame them, maybe some of that blame should be placed on the extremist groups that are using it to plan their shit too.

    https://apnews.com/article/fbi-warns-armed-protests-next-week-ec75b26289166b4afd30c15b0dd2ded5

    Hopefully its just til the inaugeration is over, for those that use those platforms. I dont use twitter, fb or any social media besides a few discord channels so it really doesnt affect me.


    Post edited by Asheram on
  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 6,873
    And Twitter, et al are so much better?
    blamo2000

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • AsheramAsheram Member EpicPosts: 4,924
    edited January 12
    .
    Post edited by Asheram on
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 23,226
    Asheram said:
    Go post what that guy did on twitter and see how long it stays up.
    You literally just linked that from Twitter and it is literally still up.
    FaelsunAlBQuirky
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 23,226
    Google didn't take Parler servers offline.  Amazon did that.  Google and Apple did kick Parler out of their app stores.  Being kicked out of the Google Play store isn't a full ban from being used on Android, but being kicked out of Apple's app store does kick you off of iOS entirely.

    Ultimately, at least one of two things is going to happen:
    1)  Amazon and Apple will back off soon and allow Parler to return.
    2)  The right will create their own full digital infrastructure, not just Parler, and a right-wing version of left-wing Amazon Web Services won't kick Parler off of its servers.

    Considering that telling half the country that you don't want their business isn't the most sensible strategy for a would-be monopolist, it wouldn't be terribly surprising if (1) happens within days.  Parler could make some minor tweaks to more aggressively censor advocacy of violence, then Apple and Amazon declare it good enough.  After all, the right-wing complaints about Twitter generally aren't "they don't let us advocate murder there".

    This wouldn't be the first knee-jerk mistake that Apple made in kicking things out of their app store, only to back off later.  Remember when they decided that Confederate flags had to go, and kicked out Civil War games that used a Confederate flag to represent the Confederacy?

    If (1) doesn't happen, then (2) will take quite a bit longer, as there a lot more pieces than just isolated apps.  It also takes an ad network to compete with Google's so that they can't demonetize your apps, physical server hosting, DDOS protection, and some other things.

    The hard part will be the places where there is a natural monopoly.  The two key components are ISPs and operating systems.  On the former, no ISPs have shown any real inclination to filter content just yet.  It's also largely illegal for them to do so.  The "net neutrality" debate wasn't about ISPs blocking sites entirely.  It was about whether ISPs could offer more bandwidth to some sites than others.  If ISPs cap your connection to Parler at 1 Mbps, so what?  And again, they haven't shown any inclination to do that, whether it's legal or not.  Videos are the only place where it is likely to become a real problem.

    Operating systems have a natural monopoly or at least oligopoly because hardware vendors can't be expected to write drivers for dozens of operating systems and software vendors can't be expected to write software for dozens of them, either.  On open platforms, this doesn't particularly matter.  If Microsoft were to kick Parler out of the Microsoft store, would anyone even notice?  Does Parler even want to be in the Microsoft store?  How many people aren't even aware that there is a Microsoft store for Windows?  Android is also an open platform, so we might see a right-wing equivalent to the Google Play store, but that's just a software thing.

    Closed platforms are the real sticking point.  So far, that's basically game consoles from Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo, and Apple.  (Because the iPad is actually a game console.)  Other than iDevices, though, game consoles aren't much used for social media.
    AlBQuirkyAsheram
  • AsheramAsheram Member EpicPosts: 4,924
    edited January 12
    Quizzical said:
    Asheram said:
    Go post what that guy did on twitter and see how long it stays up.
    You literally just linked that from Twitter and it is literally still up.
    True the thread is up, but the post wasnt made by parlertakes, he just reposts stuff thats being posted on parler or was before it went dark.

    He wasnt reposting it on twitter to get people to follow it but to show some of the crap that was being posted there. And that wasnt the only example either.

    I edited it out of my other post as I wasn't trying to spread it, sry.

    Also noteworthy is the first amendment doesn't apply to private companies only to the government.

    https://pacificlegal.org/a-first-amendment-win-supreme-court-rules-the-government-cant-control-private-speech/

    "The Supreme Court has once again emphasized that the protection of property rights is an essential protection for a free society. As the Supreme Court explained, this “critical boundary … protects a robust sphere of individual liberty.”

    Private property owners can create places for public gathering and speech, without forfeiting either property rights or speech rights. The Supreme Court pointed to several traditional examples, such as a community bulletin board at a grocery store or a comedy club holding an open-mic night. Just because private property is opened up for speech does not mean that the property owner has to allow everyone access. Otherwise, “Private property owners … would face the unappetizing choice of allowing all comers or closing the platform altogether.”



    Post edited by Asheram on
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 23,226
    Asheram said:
    He wasnt reposting it on twitter to get people to follow it but to show some of the crap that was being posted there. And that wasnt the only example either.

    And what was the context on Parler?  It might be exactly the same thing, with the person who posted it on Parler quoting someone else.  Perhaps the original context was fictional lines stated by a villain.  Maybe he was criticizing some outrageous left-wing writing by saying it would be as bad as if he said such and such.  Maybe it was purely satire, or an inside joke that is only funny if you know the context--which his friends would.  Or maybe he really was advocating killing people.

    I don't know.  And you also don't know.  Even the person who posted it on Twitter likely doesn't know.  And that's the point.  Parler probably is a cesspool, and for exactly the same reasons as Twitter.  That's not a difference between Parler and Twitter, and it's not a reason to treat them differently.

    The fundamental problem with such "microblogging" sites is that they encourage taking things out of context.  They make it so that if someone takes something out of context and someone reading it wants to know the original context, they often can't even find it.

    Most of the short statements that look bad if taken out of context look at least less bad when put into the proper context.  Sometimes they look completely reasonable in context.  Sometimes a statement that you'll find outrageous without the context is a sentiment that you'd actually agree with once you see the context.  Sometimes people who take things out of context can make it look like the original author is saying exactly the opposite of what he was actually saying in context.

    But Twitter often doesn't let you see the context.  All you see is a statement that looks outrageous when taken out of context.  And so people get outraged and form digital lynch mobs to try to destroy someone's life for having said something so outrageous.  Trolls go digging through long-forgotten tweets from people they hate hoping to find something that looks outrageous when out of context so that they can use it to destroy the person.  To the extent that there's a difference between Twitter and Parler here, it's only because Twitter has been around for longer and has been more widely used.

    That's why I strongly prefer forums like this one.  Here, if you're linked to a post in a particular thread, the entire thread is right there.  You can see the context.  And that often makes it clear that the outrageous statement isn't nearly as bad as you thought at first.  It's not a fluke that Twitter is the Internet's primary home of digital lynch mobs who try to destroy people, and not other sites that make it much easier to find the context.
  • AsheramAsheram Member EpicPosts: 4,924
    True thats why I removed it.

  • CleffyCleffy Member RarePosts: 6,345
    Just Gab, bitchute, and minds. 
  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 6,873
    Cleffy said:
    Just Gab, bitchute, and minds. 
    Thanks. I knew about bitchute and have joined them. I'm not really an "anti-social" media person, so the Parler thing doesn't concern me. I'm currently seeking e-mail services so I can get off of gmail.

    The thing is, where do these "alternatives" have their infrastructure? Can they be cancelled/deleted on a whim like Parler did?

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • blamo2000blamo2000 Member RarePosts: 1,123
    Things you think would be safe end up not being safe.  I am an ardent anti-authoritarian/totalitarian so I keep an eye out for all of the shenanigans of the new ultra-McCarthyists.  They are everywhere.  An alternative to Patreon had their credit card processing closed down at the behest of the totalitarians.  Tons of people had their banks close their accounts out of the blue for abject nonsense, etc.

    The answer is nothing is safe, nothing makes any sense any more, and the people cheering this shit on truly think they are good, moral, and extremely righteous.  When you are siding with the mega-banks, mega-corporation monopolies, and destroying people's lives for having ideas you dislike, and when you make excuses that the awful things your side does is good and righteous but when the other side does the same awful things it is evil and must be stopped and is completely different because of nonsense reasons - your mind is so devoid of logic and reason it is hard to consider you a fully fledged person. 

    Cults have a long history of telling their followers this you cannot hear, this you cannot see, these people you cannot speak to.  They also having a history of believing if you are not with them, then you are against them.  If you do not think exactly as they do, you are against them.  

    My own sister hates me and told me I am no longer a POC because I didn't vote for her guy.  I didn't vote for the other guy.  I didn't vote.  I've never voted because there has never been anyone worth voting for or anyone who aligns with me politically.  

    Nothing is safe long-term as the elitists will win, but in the short term certain things are safer.  You can get an email through smaller companies that have less political clout such as zoho, proton, aol, and gmx.  There are tons.  

    There is a site called "locals" that hosts people who don't want to be kicked off of other providers or watch what they say.  But, has the same worry of having a big bank shut down their processing to end them.  The system now, especially under covid, makes it near impossible to not give money to big mega-corps like amazon - for ordering things I try to go directly to the company instead of a third party.  I find alternatives to get shows I want instead of my money going to companies that try to indoctrinate me (streamio, kodi, etc.).  

    My advice is to turn off politically as much as possible - just a complete rejection of the system.  But it is hard since they make absolutely everything political.  But it helps me mentally.  My friends and family know to not talk politics in front of me, I go to one news site about tech tyranny, and since I've completely disengaged I have been much happier.  I made peace knowing the yolk is going to be made heavier and tighter until it crushes me and everyone else.  There is no fighting it.  All I can do is try to avoid giving money to the companies and elites doing it, and disengage with the people cheering on the corporations and elites doing it.  
  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 6,873
    blamo2000 said:
    My advice is to turn off politically as much as possible - just a complete rejection of the system.  But it is hard since they make absolutely everything political.  But it helps me mentally.  My friends and family know to not talk politics in front of me, I go to one news site about tech tyranny, and since I've completely disengaged I have been much happier.  I made peace knowing the yolk is going to be made heavier and tighter until it crushes me and everyone else.  There is no fighting it.  All I can do is try to avoid giving money to the companies and elites doing it, and disengage with the people cheering on the corporations and elites doing it.  
    Agreed. I have not been politically active since I voted for Perot in 1992. Afterwards, I saw the 2 parties as being fundamentally the same: Power above all else.

    BUT... I don't want this a political thread. I want info and suggestions of where to turn to avoid these monopolies :)
    Asheram

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 23,226
    AlBQuirky said:
    blamo2000 said:
    My advice is to turn off politically as much as possible - just a complete rejection of the system.  But it is hard since they make absolutely everything political.  But it helps me mentally.  My friends and family know to not talk politics in front of me, I go to one news site about tech tyranny, and since I've completely disengaged I have been much happier.  I made peace knowing the yolk is going to be made heavier and tighter until it crushes me and everyone else.  There is no fighting it.  All I can do is try to avoid giving money to the companies and elites doing it, and disengage with the people cheering on the corporations and elites doing it.  
    Agreed. I have not been politically active since I voted for Perot in 1992. Afterwards, I saw the 2 parties as being fundamentally the same: Power above all else.

    BUT... I don't want this a political thread. I want info and suggestions of where to turn to avoid these monopolies :)
    At least in America, most of the censorship concerns are about political speech.  No one particularly cares to censor anodyne statements.  Rather, it's companies that are politically on one side wanting to suppress speech that helps the other side.  If you're a pretty apolitical person, they probably won't come after you.

    Then again, as Pericles said, "You may not take an interest in politics, but politics will take an interest in you."  Things that are anodyne and uncontroversial today may not remain that way a decade from now.

    My recommendation is that if either side of the political spectrum comes after you to try to censor you, that you vote against whichever side is trying to censor you.  All the better to encourage them to leave you alone.
    AlBQuirkyAsheram
  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 6,873
    Quizzical said:
    Google didn't take Parler servers offline.  Amazon did that. 
    I meant to thank you for that correction. I knew it was Amazon;s servers, but I must have had Google on my brain :)

    I'm against censorship in any form. As Peter Griffin once said, "I may not agree with what you say, but I'd die to defend that freedom." (or something like that :) )

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • AsheramAsheram Member EpicPosts: 4,924
    AlBQuirky said:

    I'm against censorship in any form. As Peter Griffin once said, "I may not agree with what you say, but I'd die to defend that freedom." (or something like that :) )
    Or 
    AlBQuirky
  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 6,873
    Asheram said:
    AlBQuirky said:

    I'm against censorship in any form. As Peter Griffin once said, "I may not agree with what you say, but I'd die to defend that freedom." (or something like that :) )
    Or 
    The saddest part of all this is that gone is the mere debate of differing ideas/ideals :(

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 23,226
    edited January 14
    Back to the original topic of the thread, a lot of where to go depends on what you're looking for.  If you want a search engine, then the answer is easy:

    https://duckduckgo.com

    They don't track you, but just give you search results.  If you want a web browser, then it depends some on which companies you trust or don't.  Microsoft hasn't thus far shown censorious impulses, but you may not trust that it will stay that way.  One option that probably won't turn political is here:

    https://www.opera.com

    I've been using Opera as my primary browser since 2001, and never seen anything political from them at all.  It's made by a company in Norway, so they're likely to be a lot less in tune with American political fads.

    You mention e-mail in your original post.  There are many providers of free e-mail, and have been for decades.  I've used Gmail myself for many years, but am now looking to switch away for about the same reasons as you.  I tried to sign up for Yahoo mail (now owned by Verizon, incidentally) yesterday, but they require a phone number, and when I gave them the phone number that I've used for years, they rejected it, saying that it looks wrong.  So I decided that if they don't want me to use their e-mail, then I won't.

    The next thing I tried is Proton Mail:

    https://protonmail.com

    I just signed up for it yesterday, so I can't give you much of a review as to whether it is good or not.  Their justification for existence is that they'll respect your privacy rather than trying to make money off of scanning the contents of your e-mails.  E-mails sent within their network have end to end encryption so that they can't see what you said.

    A free account caps you at 500 MB of storage, and they really want you to pay $5/month for a less restricted account.  But that could be a good thing or a bad thing.  Remember that if you're not paying for a product, then you are the product, and the latter seems to be what you want to get away from.
    AsheramAlBQuirky
  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 23,226
    edited January 14
    Which companies you need to avoid depends on why you think they're suddenly enthusiastic about censorship.  And that depends on whether you think the reason is:

    1)  companies suddenly decided that they wanted to push left-wing politics rather than selling their products to buyers all across the political spectrum, or
    2)  companies realized that Democrats are going to control both Congress and the presidency shortly and concluded that they had to do what those Democrats wanted in order to curry political favor and/or avoid retribution for at least the next two years.

    Remember that the world learned that Democrats would control the Senate just last week.  If you think that the latter is the reason, then non-American companies are likely to be less sensitive to pressure from the US Government.  DuckDuckGo is based in Pennsylvania, Opera is based in Norway, and Proton Mail is based in Switzerland.

    If privacy or censorship are your concerns, then I'd recommend not relying on any companies based in either Russia or China, as such companies will face a fairly explicit choice of either get in bed with their national government or get attacked by it.
    AlBQuirky
  • AlBQuirkyAlBQuirky Member EpicPosts: 6,873
    Quizzical said:
    Which companies you need to avoid depends on why you think they're suddenly enthusiastic about censorship.  And that depends on whether you think the reason is:

    1)  companies suddenly decided that they wanted to push left-wing politics rather than selling their products to buyers all across the political spectrum, or
    2)  companies realized that Democrats are going to control both Congress and the presidency shortly and concluded that they had to do what those Democrats wanted in order to curry political favor and/or avoid retribution for at least the next two years.

    Remember that the world learned that Democrats would control the Senate just last week.  If you think that the latter is the reason, then non-American companies are likely to be less sensitive to pressure from the US Government.  DuckDuckGo is based in Pennsylvania, Opera is based in Norway, and Proton Mail is based in Switzerland.

    If privacy or censorship are your concerns, then I'd recommend not relying on any companies based in either Russia or China, as such companies will face a fairly explicit choice of either get in bed with their national government or get attacked by it.
    Censorship is why I'm looking elsewhere.

    I was using Pale Moon as my browser for the last decade and last year was "encouraged" by Google to switch to Opera, out of a choice of Chrome, IE, and something else. DuckDuckGo has been Palemoon's default search engine for the past few updates. (They saw what was coming :) )

    My son uses Zoho Mail and I'll look into that, but Proton Mail looks interesting, too. I'm not averse to spending money on an email service, though, so it doesn't have to be free.

    Thanks for the insight :)

    - Al

    Personally the only modern MMORPG trend that annoys me is the idea that MMOs need to be designed in a way to attract people who don't actually like MMOs. Which to me makes about as much sense as someone trying to figure out a way to get vegetarians to eat at their steakhouse.
    - FARGIN_WAR


  • QuizzicalQuizzical Member LegendaryPosts: 23,226
    AlBQuirky said:
    Quizzical said:
    Which companies you need to avoid depends on why you think they're suddenly enthusiastic about censorship.  And that depends on whether you think the reason is:

    1)  companies suddenly decided that they wanted to push left-wing politics rather than selling their products to buyers all across the political spectrum, or
    2)  companies realized that Democrats are going to control both Congress and the presidency shortly and concluded that they had to do what those Democrats wanted in order to curry political favor and/or avoid retribution for at least the next two years.

    Remember that the world learned that Democrats would control the Senate just last week.  If you think that the latter is the reason, then non-American companies are likely to be less sensitive to pressure from the US Government.  DuckDuckGo is based in Pennsylvania, Opera is based in Norway, and Proton Mail is based in Switzerland.

    If privacy or censorship are your concerns, then I'd recommend not relying on any companies based in either Russia or China, as such companies will face a fairly explicit choice of either get in bed with their national government or get attacked by it.
    Censorship is why I'm looking elsewhere.

    I was using Pale Moon as my browser for the last decade and last year was "encouraged" by Google to switch to Opera, out of a choice of Chrome, IE, and something else. DuckDuckGo has been Palemoon's default search engine for the past few updates. (They saw what was coming :) )

    My son uses Zoho Mail and I'll look into that, but Proton Mail looks interesting, too. I'm not averse to spending money on an email service, though, so it doesn't have to be free.

    Thanks for the insight :)
    In some ways, Opera is very similar to Chrome, as they're based on much of the same code base.  That means that sites that test to see if their site works with Chrome usually work fine with Opera, too.

    The main way that Opera makes money is that Google pays Opera to make Google into the default search engine.  That's easy to change, though.  You go to Menu, then Settings (or Alt+P to bring up the settings window), then scroll down to the Search Engines section.  Pick the search engine that you want to use as your default, and from then on, typing the text you want to search for into the address bar will use that search engine.  And unlike some software, Opera won't change it on you with future updates.

    The other notable way that Opera makes money is with suggested sites on the speed dial screen.  It's mostly sites that you've visited, but every now and then, they'll add one in a different section that's an obvious advertisement.  It's quick and easy to delete the extra site, and actually pretty harmless to leave it.  It's not a big, fancy ad doing potentially malicious things.  It's just some text with the name of the site or maybe an icon.

    Opera has an ad blocker and tracker blocker built into the browser.  They're two separate things, and you can turn them on or off separately for each site you visit.  They're on by default, though I usually turn the ad blocker off for legitimate sites that don't serve malicious ads, as I do want the sites I like to make money.  You can adjust the settings for a particular site from the blue shield near the top right corner.
    AlBQuirky
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