It’s gratifying and more to see the proliferation of alternatives to Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. However, there’s a need for vigilance. Robert Conquest’s Second Law of Politics tells us why:
Any organization not explicitly right-wing sooner or later becomes left-wing.
This law describes a state reached by a process Conquest did not make explicit. Yet the process is fairly simple. Indeed, the following cartoon expresses it with perfect clarity:
The Left is constantly on the alert for organizations it can colonize and conquer – because:
Thus, any new social medium will be targeted. The operators thereof will face a choice: either to enforce an absolute free-expression standard – which is now a right-wing principle – or to allow the Leftists to shout down and intimidate those in the Right. Many operators are either incapable of maintaining both freedom of expression and decorum, or are disinclined to put forth the required effort. Therefore, once the Leftist infiltrators reach a sufficient concentration, they’ll purge everyone else by one means or another.
Some new social media are already beginning to bend to the Left’s pressure. The usual “early” avenue of attack involves demands that certain sentiments widely regarded as shameful – e.g., venomous racial prejudice; dislike of all immigration and immigrants; hatred of homosexuals – be suppressed: essentially a first step toward the imposition of “political correctness.” It’s because those sentiments are so widely condemned that they make a useful entering wedge for the Left and its censors. Far too few persons are willing to take “Voltaire’s position” under those circumstances, mainly out of fear of becoming targets themselves.
Andrew Torba, the owner-operator of Gab, perhaps the most successful of the new media, has managed to keep the would-be censors outside the gates for the present. Whether he’ll be able to do so over the long term remains to be seen. For his efforts, he’s having trouble securing banking and payment-processing services for Gab: the Left’s other potent weapon against Rightist organizations.
There’s no enduring solution that can be put in place and trusted to maintain itself. Determination, vigilance, and willing effort are required to keep such a community free and open – and while the operators will usually be the Left’s principal target, the users must help to defend the domain. The alternative is atomization.