WSJ: Hedge fund investor Robert Mercer and his daughter Rebekah Mercer are financially backing the social media company Parler.
The Mercers previously financed a number of conservative causes, and have not disclosed their involvement with Parlerhttps://t.co/uRW6Ili87F
— Hamza Shaban (@hshaban) November 14, 2020
“Interesting“, as far as it goes, which probably isn’t far enough. I can’t see most of the article, because I’m not gonna buy an exorbitantly expensive Wall Street Journal subscription for pap like this:
As Facebook Inc . and Twitter Inc . have taken a harder line against unsubstantiated claims of a stolen presidential election, prominent conservatives on both platforms have responded with anger and a frequent retort: Follow me on Parler.
Launched in 2018, the libertarian-leaning social network was the most downloaded app on both Android and Apple devices for most of last week, according to data from Google and analytics firm App Annie. Its leaders envision it as a free-speech-focused alternative to the giants of Silicon Valley.
The platform also has some deep-pocketed investors. Rebekah Mercer, daughter of hedge-fund investor Robert Mercer, is among the company’s financial backers, according to people familiar with the matter. The Mercers have previously financed a number of conservative causes…
ICYMI (as you probably did, what with all the more pressing news out there), this breathless scoop comes hard on the heels of a widely circulated twitter thread…
Parler is funded by FSB? This is the most surprising development since the sun came out this morning. https://t.co/Zfyrpyx9Sg
— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) November 13, 2020
Interesting background on Parler: https://t.co/Re2ThmDigA
— Tanya Eckert Grasser ? (@treg313) November 14, 2020
The Verge adds:
… Parler turned into a kind of de facto home for conservatives’ protests against the election— including the persistent “Stop the Steal” campaign— after the race was called for former Vice President Joe Biden. Several high-profile conservative social media personalities encouraged people to abandon Twitter and Facebook because of their moderation policies, and instead follow them on Parler.
According to the WSJ, the Mercers, known for giving financial support to conservative causes and organizations, including Cambridge Analytica, have not previously revealed their connection to Parler.
In a “parley” (what Parler calls its posts) on Saturday, a user with the handle Rebekah Mercer and a yellow “verified” badge said she and “John,” an apparent reference to Parler CEO John Matze, “started Parler to provide a neutral platform for free speech as our founders intended,” and that “the ever increasing tyranny and hubris of our tech overlords lead the fight against data mining” and online free speech…
As a devout Cynic, I suspect the distinction between Mercer funding and official Soviet funding is very much on the Why buy a cow when milk is so cheap? spectrum, myself. But then, all the most significant capital-L libertarian thought leaders seem to have had a strong Russian influence: Ayn Rand, the Koch brothers, Edward Snowden — it’s a tradition!
‘Parler. Because too many people know what cesspools Gab and 8chan are.’
Edit: also, tech news site Ars Technica took a look at Parler a few days ago, and besides being a cesspool, the site is janky as all hell:
I know of at least a few very leftie friends who have created burner accounts and gleefully go into Parler to troll the right-wingers. One of them expressed concern that before too long, it’ll be more trollers than actual right-wingers. Heh. Heh heh heh. Let us be so lucky.
This makes WAY more sense than the article i saw earlier this week saying thatGeorge Soros owned Parler and was laughing all the way tot he bank about making money off of the rubes.
And if Soros was involved, it wouldn’t have teh wanky issues with imbedding links, because, well, quality.
apparently there’s some discussion that Parler serves multiple purposes…
it has suspected ties to being a FSB information gathering system (the founder has a Russian spouse, who did one of those “famous” tours of America and “fell in love” in a whirlwind romance with a tech dude-bro (boy does that sound familiar)
we also find out that the Mercers have a stake in it and seek to operate it like Cambridge Analytica, which should scare the crap outta anyone
and supposedly, in order for you to get a verified account, you have to pony up your passport and bank information…. not like anything bad could ever come from that….
Remember the Iron Law of Conservatism: Whatever crimes they accuse liberals of committing, conservatives are already doing.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
thread from a South Dakota ER nurse, on-topic because the people she’s describing are probably among those who make Dan Bongino (is he the ex-caddy?) the top influencer on Facebook every day. Her dog’s name is Cliff
With a virtual machine and a VPN, maybe. But no way is any device connected to my actual life touching Parler.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
I wondered why “vacation” was in scare quotes, so to speak
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: Wow. That thread is something!
Not Parler-related, but vaguely “media” if not quite of the social variety. Reposted from tag end of dead thread downstairs.
Of all the political bogeymen from the past, I really didn’t expect to see the Rev. Jeremiah Wright making a 2020 return appearance. Yet there he is on my teevee, shouting “GOD DAMN AMERICA!” just like in the old days. Kelly Loeffler approved this ad against Raphael Warnock, I guess because it worked so well against Barack Obama in 2008.
Goku (aka Amerikan Baka)
Tumblr also did this a few years back. A lot of people left in protest
Several of the twitter feeds I follow have just referenced taking down their tweets replying to a ‘fake Loeffler tweet’.
Could the Rev. Wright tweet be the one they’re referring to? Sounds like the sort of ‘honeypot’ see-what-the-Godless-libs-want-to-believe fakes we’ve seen before.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: What a nightmare for nurses. I never dreamed that infected people who’re anti- Covid would be carrying that delusion all the way into the hospital and taking it out on medical workers. Truly sick. And the positivity rate …. It’s cruel and depraved, what Republicans are doing to health care workers.
Libertarian leaning? It’s browner than a SS reunion!
@Jim, Foolish Literalist:
I was just about to embed exactly the same tweet. It’s unreal!
@Aleta: what kind of fucking cultist do you have to be to be in the ICU on a ventilator and still be in COVID denial. I have no words. What do they think they have? A bad cold?
@Goku (aka Amerikan Baka): IIRC, Tumblr’s ‘no porn’ rule was protested as banning a lot of content (anime nudity, smutty fanfic) that made Tumblr important to its users.
Parler, I’m told by lawyer twitter, has a clause in its tiny-print-that-nobody-reads downloading link where users accept they’ll pay any & all legal fees if Parler gets sued for something that user posts. Which is, the lawyers agree, probably not enforceable — but they expect some jackass who didn’t read the tiny print to end up getting bankrupted, if not worse, when they say something libelous about a powerful corporation or foreign government. That’s kinda the reverse of Tumblr’s ‘no smut, you preverts, we can’t afford to be sued’ stance.
This was a political commercial on my local NBC station at 11:30, just before SNL tonight. There may well be fake Loeffler tweets out there, but this ad ain’t it. Or if it is, WXIA-11Alive really got snookered.
Well that wouldn’t take much, seeing as the Shutzstaffel wore black uniforms. A reunion of the Sturmabeilung on the other hand …
@SiubhanDuinne: Okay — guess Loeffler’s throwing her ad money at people who, if not honest, are at least dedicated to their job!
The Mercers are straight up Nazis. They funded Milo Yiannopolis. Breitbart. Parler. And on and on. https://archive.thinkprogress.org/these-wealthy-institutions-are-quietly-financing-white-nationalism-5313db89b185/
@Anne Laurie: No. The fake tweet was a screenshot of a post of hers from Parler. The screenshot was fake and it didn’t even have her correct Parler name in it.
Major Major Major Major
Such as, in addition to your examples, pornography, which I also saw it protested for.
Facebook and Tumblr both cracked down on nudity and sexual content at the same time, as a predictable consequence of FOSTA-SESTA.
How long until the ads morph Warnock into Willie Horton?
Haha yes, very familiar with that. In Germany “being brown” is a synonym for being a Nazi though and that’s what I was going for
Why are they naming their site after a French verb? You’d think American Nazis would go German (sprechen) or, better still, Old English (specan). Have they forgotten about Freedom Fries?
Libertarians: what if pirates used whining instead of swords?
Major Major Major Major
I guess it’s obvious in retrospect that the FSB and the Mercers are two backers.
I have no idea what Parler is. But looks like whatever it is, it’s doing bad stuff.
@Wag: The Soros thing got started or at least boosted by someone faking up a Fox News screengrab announcing it.
Whining instead of swashbuckling would make for some boring, annoying movies.
Nazi Twitter clone because they weren’t allowed to nazi their Nazi as much as they wanted on Twitter.
well, tumblr is (was) for porn. so nixing that component killed it as a relevant service
I notice that people are pronouncing Parler’s name “parlour”. I wonder why Parler is not correcting the common impression that the word is a misspelling of parlour.
I assumed from its inception the name was meant to invoke parlor, as in the room where one hosted guests and the French connection was at most incidental.
@matt: They also own Mike Pence.
Whom they’ll be listing on whatever the fringe right equivalent of eBay is come January 21.
@notjonathon: Did they work out some schedule with Mother?
@NotMax: For sale: One creepy Christo-fascist ghost.
what does this mean?
Mother approved, lo mileage.
I doubt Robert Mercer has much to do with this. He declared himself out a few years ago when a bunch of Milo’s (remember him?) emails got dumped revealing that the Breitbart kids viewed him as a chump to be fleeced. He turned the whole operation over to his daughter, who is a true believer of course
Speaking of true believers, if you haven’t’ seen a clip of Mike Flynn lawyer Sydney Powell’s appearance on Lou Dobb’s program the other day you missed some prime hilarity. She goes off on the voting machine switch conspiracy managing to drag in both Hugo Chavez and China. Lou nods his head.
To be fair, that’s probably all the activity Lou can really manage these days.
OT: Washington going into lockdown. Again.
@Anne Laurie: Yea and as you know when you hear the sermon he first references a horrible crime the United States Government perpetrated in our name against black Americans, and then followed with the rightful refrain.
Via His Holy Harness.
I’m all for 65,853,516 punches for every one of these Trump trash propaganda ministers.
Since I’m told Parler demands not only your real name, but your Social Security number — and your passport number, if you have one — I’m guessing it means ‘Why should you let Zuckerberg harvest *some* of your data, when we could be harvesting *all* of it?’
That’s not what it says — the ‘allowing BigTech to steal ur data’ is standard glibertarian boilerplate — but that seems to be what it means.
the pollyanna from hell
Parler must become a valuable ally to Conservapedia
@Anne Laurie: The fake Kelly Loeffler tweet was a screenshot of a Parler post from an account with her name complaining about Stacey Abrams registering too many Black people. Trouble was, it wasn’t her account. Someone created an account with a name like SenatorKellyLoeffler, but she doesn’t have the title in her account name.
That’s what responses to the tweet said, anyway. I’m not getting near Parler, nor VKontakte, 4chan, 8chan, etc.
What on earth for?
@Amir Khalid: Because, if what I’ve read about their ‘Terms & Conditions’ is correct, Parler needs to be able to find any user who gets them sued, in order to be reimbursed for any legal fees.
Will Parler get sued? If current trends continue, very likely! Will they be able to collect damages from the user who gets them sued? Very unlikely, IMO. But meanwhile… they have a valuable database of ‘committed’ libertarian/conservative/FREEDUMB lovers, and a stated willingness to be the skunk at the social-media garden party. I’m told that’s a valuable property for someone like Rebekah Mercer, who I believe still owns whatever Cambridge Analytica morphed into (Emerald something?)… and that’s even before its value to the FSB, with or without her approval.
Nothing to see here. Totally normal information needed to sign up for White Trashtionalist Nazi Twitter.
Right? That’s enough info to get cash loans, buy cars, and request tax refund.
That makes so little sense. Why not have clear TOS and a defined enforcement framework, doesn’t matter if it actually works or not as long as you try. I mean that’s basically all of corporate America and everyone else does it that way. This is SO out of the ordinary, I am surprised this being accepted just so.
AL, i have access to an online wsj account via my parents. I tried to send you a copy of the full text via email. Not sure if it adds much to the conversation, but for completeness.
Start posting pro liberal Dem stuff there and see how long “free speech” lasts.
Even before Trump, conservatism was an angry whine by white bigots that they are no longer the norm, catered to in all ways. They were furious then that they are wrong about so many things, and demanded to be treated as if they were right. That is the entire anti-science thing, ‘how dare you contradict us, the chosen ones.’ Of course they are enraged when they catch it. Life is contradicting them again, and they are demanding their doctors and nurses admit they’re right and the facts are wrong.
Tumblr was an artist site. Damned few even famous mainstream artists don’t draw at least the occasional ‘female presenting nipple’ as tumblr put it. I mean, look at high art historically. Ban nudity, and you ban art, and you lose all artists and all the people who went there for art.
This sounds entirely different from Parler’s problem. If I understand correctly, Parler is trying to ban pornography, but doing it so badly that pornography related spam advertisement flourishes, choking out real content.
@Anne Laurie: I thought tumblr is/was a porn blog. That’s what Colbert implied when he interviewed the founder guy a bunch of years back
See my comment just before yours.
@Anne Laurie: No, there was one yesterday that came up that said something like “Stacey Abrams registered black people and Democrats and that must never be allowed to happen again”. It was shocking. I had posted it, asking if it was real, and it appears that it is not.
They’re like the anti-choice activists who get abortions and then go right back to waving signs and screaming at doctors and at other patients getting the same care. (Article: “The Only Moral Abortion is My Abortion”.) https://www.prochoiceactionnetwork-canada.org/articles/anti-tales.shtml
I saw some of the Parler content in screenshots posted on FB. It was about killing all the liberals to make the world a better place, etc. I hope law enforcement of some kind is monitoring it, and not just posting as members.
@Nicole: more trollers than actual right wingers? How woukd you tell the difference?
@Sebastian: scratch a libertarian, find a fascist. (Gordon F*tch)
we’re calling, we’re calling Junk Puncho; a mighty lama, he.
Re: the Mercers – libertarianism is a rotting disease with tendrils throughout this country. Twenty years from now, either we’ll have a democracy or we’ll have libertarianism but not both.
I read that tumblr’s ‘no porn rule’ was a result of google threatening to remove it from their app store because ‘it’s a porn app’. also they wanted to take tumblr mainstream and sell it. And the buyers discovered that without porn, there was little to no audience for the site and lost like 97% of their traffic.
@Goku (aka Amerikan Baka):
It was honstly a pretty dumb and I don’t even use or look at Tumblr that much but moderation and censorship standards gotta change with the times, I guess! Seems a pretty totalitarian response to try and rid itself of child trafficking and/or child pornography but YMWV.