4 Prominent Conservatives Abandon Twitter as Censorship Reaches New Heights
In the aftermath of President Donald Trump’s permanent banishment from Twitter and its purge of others on the right, four major conservative figures have decided to leave, either for the pastures of alternative social media platforms or for nothing at all.
For those who departed for Parler, their decision might get a little more difficult: The conservative favorite has been banned from the Google and Apple app stores and is down in-browser for the moment after Amazon suspended its access to its servers.
However, Twitter users won’t be able to hear from Rush Limbaugh, Greg Gutfeld, Lou Dobbs or Mark Levin on the platform anymore.
The first to depart was radio icon Rush Limbaugh, who didn’t leave any message before he deactivated the account Thursday, shortly after Trump was banned from the platform permanently.
However, Twitter confirmed that the account was “deactivated by the owner,” according to USA Today.
Limbaugh was never a particularly enthusiastic user of Twitter; he joined in October but called social media a “cesspool.”
On his Oct. 13 show, he said he’d started the account to fight for Trump’s reelection.
“We are gonna be doubling down,” Limbaugh said.
“We’re gonna be doing everything we can in these last three weeks to take the message of preserving the American way of life, to take the message that America is a good and decent, it is almost a savior of a country, that it is being maligned, it is being savagely impugned.”
Limbaugh obviously kept it after Trump’s loss, but the president’s permanent ban was too much for the radio host.
Conservative radio host Mark Levin also left his account in the aftermath of the banning, making the announcement Friday.
“I have suspended my own Twitter account in protest against Twitter’s fascism,” Levin said.
“I ask all my followers to join me now on Parler and Rumble,” he added, linking his accounts.
I have suspended my own Twitter account in protest against Twitter’s fascism. I ask all my followers to join me now on Parler and Rumble.https://t.co/XswC88juiGhttps://t.co/1YeTi0ywBk
— Mark R. Levin (@marklevinshow) January 8, 2021
Rumble is an independent video platform.
Fox News’ Greg Gutfeld also said he was leaving, not only because of Twitter censorship but because of Big Tech’s tactics in general.
“[O]kay, this IS my last tweet,” Gutfeld tweeted Saturday. “CNN tries to get FNC banned. Apple targets Parler. Publishers dump writers. music labels drop artists. twitter bans/removes thousands. tech companies join hands.”
Gutfeld’s talk about CNN trying to get Fox banned referred to a column by CNN’s Oliver Darcy, who said TV providers that continue carrying Fox News “should not escape scrutiny.”
“[T]his redefines who the true rebels are,” Gutfeld continued. “[I]f you like the purge, you’re the servant.”
okay, this IS my last tweet:
CNN tries to get FNC banned.
Apple targets Parler.
Publishers dump writers.
music labels drop artists.
twitter bans/removes thousands.
tech companies join hands.
this redefines who the true rebels are.
if you like the purge, you’re the servant.
— GregGutfeld (@greggutfeld) January 9, 2021
Fox Business host Lou Dobbs, a vocal Trump supporter, also announced he was leaving before he deactivated his account.
“I don’t believe any American should ever tolerate those who deny us freedom of speech or who would ever be so arrogant as to censor our President,” he tweeted, according to Breitbart.
“I’m withdrawing from Twitter as of right now. Please join me on Parler @LouDobbsTonight. God bless you and America.”
Dobbs’ Twitter account no longer exists.
Then again, at the moment, neither does Parler. The move by Amazon means the platform will be down for “a while,” company executives told Fox News on Sunday.
Amazon’s purported reason for the move was violent threats issued from some Parler accounts before and during the Capitol incursion — which Parler chief policy officer Amy Peikoff said came from newly created accounts.
“We’re not necessarily being singled out by those tech companies, but certainly by the people who have been putting pressure on them and, in fact, we think we’re being set up in a lot of ways because in looking at some of the content, these are accounts that have been created two days ago and they have few pieces of content and some of them are parodies of what you would think a right-wing insider of violence would be,” she said.
Parler CEO John Matze said it would “get back online as quickly as possible,” likely about a week.
If the platform is down indefinitely — or at least long enough to cripple it — it will raise the question of where conservatives will go, particularly since numerous voices are calling for more aggressive policing of social media and the internet.
In the wake of his ban, Trump floated the idea of starting his own social media platform or working with others.
“We have been negotiating with various other sites, and will have a big announcement soon, while we also look at the possibilities of building out our own platform in the near future. We will not be SILENCED!” he said in a tweet from the @POTUS account shortly after the ban, according to Fox News.
However, it’s difficult to see a Trump-run platform not running into the same problems Parler has, if not worse.
Whatever the case, it’s clear there are going to be more conservatives who become Twitter-abstemious — and that’ll necessitate an alternative platform. What it is, and how stable it can be, is anyone’s guess.
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