They think that Twitter is censoring their message. So, a few people have decided to capitalize on that fear and make the alt-right version of Twitter. It’s called Parler and, with over 10 million monthly users, it’s starting to get quite popular.
Yet, unlike the French language from which it takes its name, the site is anything but sophisticated.
The fact is, while Parler sells itself as being a rival to Twitter, it’s anything but. Between bad design and major structural flaws, the site looks more like something that was rushed out to capitalize on public sentiment and not a serious attempt to dethrone the social media giant.
Here are three good reasons why that just might be the case.
It may sound superficial but if Parler’s aim is to lure users away from Twitter, then its design is going to make that a lot more difficult.
For anyone used to the look of Twitter and its visual pop, Parler doesn’t even compare. Poor choice(and use of) color, not enough contrast on the old-looking text, Parler looks like it was designed 10 years ago and has been left in the sun to fade since then.
Anyone looking for an upgrade on Twitter’s user experience won’t find it in this cheap imitation.
Thus, Parler’s only real selling point is the ideology of its users. Which brings up the next point.
Despite the fact that the site was designed to be conservative, if it wants to compete with Twitter it has to do so in every aspect, not just politics.
As it stands, Twitter offers every type of content imaginable. Sports, Art, Humor, News, Celebrities, nearly every aspect of humanity can be found on Twitter.
Parler, on the other hand, offers right-wing politics and that’s it. There’s just no reason why any of the non-political accounts that make Twitter so much fun would ever switch. Unless they want 500 times less exposure (via SimilarWeb, July 2020).
However, it’s not like any big account is exclusively on Parler. Which brings up the biggest hurdle for the platform.
Almost all of the political content on Parler can also be found on Twitter. Every major conservative voice is on both platforms and just copy pastes their Twitter accounts. That, in and of itself, debunks Parler’s claim of Twitter censoring major conservative voices.
While the site touts itself as hosting content that Twitter won’t, it seems to forget how permissive Twitter is. The only accounts they censor are from extremists, on both sides. In fact, Twitter gets a lot of criticism for being too permissive.
So, other than blatantly racist content and the wildest conspiracy theories, there’s not much you can see on Parler that you can’t see on Twitter.
As far as utility goes, Parler doesn’t offer much to its users beyond a convenient way to index hatred.
Being expressly conservative ensures that no one would switch from Twitter to Parler unless they were already pretty far to the right. Even so, there’s not much content on Parler that isn’t already available on Twitter.
On top of that, the site has 1/500th the reach of Twitter and is also just plain ugly in comparison.
So, unless you’re logging on for your Two Minutes of Hate before work, Parler doesn’t offer any content or experience that’s better than Twitter.
It’s clear as day to anyone involved, and there’s no doubt the founders know Parler will never become a major influencer in the mindset of society.
They’re just looking to capitalize on public sentiment.
Do you think Parler will still be relevant next year?