British values and anti-Islam campaigner Tommy Robinson after being banned from Facebook, severely restricted on YouTube and recently banned from Snapchat has now created a Telegram channel to reach his followers.
Telegram is primarily used as an encrypted messaging and voice call service on smartphones and tablets with iOS and Andriod apps. It was launched in 2013 by Russian brothers Pavel and Nikolai Durov who also founded VK, Russia’s equivalent of Facebook.
Since being forced out of VK in 2014 the brothers have lived in self imposed exile from Russia and are critics of the Russian Government. As a result Telegram is banned in Russia.
As well as it’s messaging and group chat features a telegram channel allows a user to broadcast a message, poll, link or video to other users who are subscribed to their channel instantly, working like a mass text messaging service.
Telegram has proven itself to be a supporter of free speech as it current hosts the alt-right’s most extreme personality Christopher Cantwell’s Radical Agenda show chat, he was recently banned from Gab.
It also provides a reasonable layer of security for its users though it has been criticized for not having end to end encryption available via default, though this is done to allow access by users from multiple devices.
Tommy’s telegram channel is less than a week old but has already attracted over 14,000 subscribes. Given Facebook and YouTube’s continued censorship of right wing voices, Tommy’s successful move to Telegram has led to many other right wing personalities and supporters moving over to the platform either to chat with others without the fear of being banned or creating their own channel.
The Unshackled began our Telegram channel back in February and with Tommy now on the platform other Australian alt-media personalities The Dusty Bogan and Matty’s Modern Life have created Telegram channels.
Given the activist and political pressure that has been applied to social media companies to deplatform Tommy no doubt it will be applied to Telegram as more people move over to the platform.
Tommy has proven himself time and time again to defeat the social media censors. Even before he was banned from Facebook he began a mailing list so his supporters could still be notified of his activism and has his own news website with his tr.news venture with Avi Yemini.
Other recent victims of Facebook’s latest purge has been the Lads Society and their founder Tom Sewell and Australian patriot activist Neil Erikson. Last year Blair Cottrell, Alex Jones and the Proud Boys were banned from Facebook, the latter two have also been banned by Twitter and YouTube.
Other free speech social media platforms many right wing media personalities and social media users have been migrating to are Gab, Minds and MeWe who to this point have resisted any pressure to deplaform right wingers and have only done so to those promoting violence.
It would appear that a tipping point has been reached with Facebook and possibly YouTube where they have deplatformed too many prominent personalities that now users are deciding to break free of their dependence of the platforms and explore other alternatives.