By Evelyn Pyburn
If we the citizens of the US are to have free speech, without which there is no freedom, then we must create a decentralized web. Everyone can play a role in that.
I must admit, I quite naively was excited about the possibilities of the internet and communications technology when I first came to understand what they could do. Understanding that there is nothing more important to advance freedom than the free flow of information, I thought this would be the unleashing of the world. This would allow freedom to spread like wildfire because for the first time in history information would be readily available to all.
Goes to show, how little I understood all of the potential for the new technology. And, it also goes to show (along with many more recent events) my naiveté about how quickly people would fall into line at the first crack of the whip.
The fact is the power of free markets to push back against the media giants is all in our hands… the market through competition gives us unimaginable opportunity to undermine even the most powerful corporations. We just have to do it.
While it is important to reverse the law that absolves media giants of all accountability (yes, our Congress granted them that), more important is to have a decentralized web which offers consumers options. And, that’s a matter of “voting with your feet”.
For example, free-speech alternatives to Facebook and Twitter include Gab, Spreely, MeWe, Minds and Parler. Uncensored alternatives to YouTube include Bitchute, Rumble, Brighteon, Banned.video, and Thinkspot.
As more and more people with differing points of view — media, public health, political watchdogs, civil rights advocates and investigative journalists — are censored and de-platformed —they are moving to other web options and creating other competitive information communities. Each citizen may join them and each citizen has the opportunity to participate in what is really a very practical freedom movement.
And, there are a lot of other things happening to address this attack on our freedom of speech. We just don’t hear about them so much because, of course, the media does not report that kind of news. There are cybersecurity experts and billionaire philanthropists who are right now working to preserve personal freedoms and liberties, and – according to some “unapproved” reports – they are re-doing the entire internet by implementing a strategy proposed by Tim Berners-Lee, who invented the “world wide web” graphical interface, 30 years ago. He did not license his technology and so delivered the “world wide web” free of charge to the world.
You can safeguard your online privacy by encrypting your text messages, which keeps them from becoming data mining fodder. Download the Signal or Telegram app and/or use a virtual private network (VPN) on your desktop, laptop and mobile devices.
Telegram has grown in popularity, as many who have been banned on other social media platforms have migrated there. In addition to encrypting your text messages, the app also allows you to subscribe to channels for “Read-only” messages that can be sent to your phone from any channel to which you subscribe.
For searches, check out DuckDuckGo and SwissCows – they do not collect and store your data. For a browser, consider Brave or Opera. From a security perspective, Opera is far superior to Google Chrome and even includes a free VPN service. For encrypted email, sign up with ProtonMail. As for online document sharing, Digital Trends has published an article listing a number of alternatives to Google Docs.
Lastly, if you care about privacy and free speech, stop using any and all Google products, including all its search engines, browser, advertising, email service, Google docs, Google Home devices, Fitbit and Android phones. There are alternatives to all of them.
Google was among the first – like 20 years ago —to eagerly go to China to advise the dictators on how to control their citizens’ use of new communications technology, and how to best use new technology to intercept and censor news to their citizens from around the world.
It’s true that finding alternatives is inconvenient. And, it may be that alternatives are not as effective, but they will probably get more effective as more people use them. But no matter the inconvenience or whatever sacrifices may be necessary, it’s a small price — very small price, indeed — to have to pay to stand up to tyranny and to do your part to fight for freedom.
We are in a battle – a worldwide battle – for freedom, every bit as much as were our forefathers 300 years ago …and just like then, we all have a role to play. When considering its potential imposition upon you, envision the blood trails in the snow from the frozen feet of Revolutionary War soldiers, most of whom did not have coats or shoes, as they crossed the Delaware River in the dead of night during a blizzard on Christmas Eve, to do battle for the freedom for you to be inconvenienced.