Far-right social network Gab releases "Dissenter", a browser extension allowing Gab users to comment on the pages they're viewing
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- Users of far right social network Gab can now comment on the entire internet
- Word count
- 689 words
Genius has been letting users annotate the web for years now, so this is not a new idea.
Genius' intentions are different, though - they wanted you to be able to annotate websites like you can annotate lyrics. It still ends up allowing abuse, though.
I remember an extension ages ago that did this back in like 2009 or 2010, it was designed by... Coolio I think? I don't think they're in business any more. But yeah, it did exactly what this extension does, they looked like glass sticky notes overlayed on the webpages. Was actually pretty cool while it worked, although it's probably a privacy nightmare looking back, to send every page you're browsing to some third party database... Which is what these nutjobs are doing too...
You should check out https://hypothes.is
That's actually an amazing idea. It allows community discussion of a thing a sponsoring (and potentially censoring) organization doesn't want discussion of. It's bad that it'll be a way of reinforcing Gab's far-right echo chamber, but it is one hell of a solution.
Do they publish information about the moderation team? Or are they going with a bot-abusable upvote/downvote model to suppress dissenting voices?
What info does it scrape from users?
How is the community discussion aspect any different than Tildes or Reddit, other than that the comment chains have the potential to last forever?
Imagine a Tildes or Reddit that followed you around the entire web.
Because you'll encounter discussions qs you do your thing around the web, rather than going to a specific site designed for it.
Honestly, the concept is cool, too bad it's being used by the far-right.
I remember that around ten years ago, there was a browser extension/multi-player game that let you fight for territory by placing "mines" on websites for other people w/ the extension to trip when they visited. If anyone else remembers it and knows what it was called, please lemme know!
You should check out https://hypothes.is
Please do not spam the link all over this thread. If you really want people to know, you can @mention them or send them a DM.
your right. I'm sorry
This seems like a great way to keep the people on Gab in their far-right echo chamber.
Just so I understand: They comment about other websites on their website/app?
Yes. The Dissenter site allows a user to add an extension to their browser that adds a separate comment section only for Dissenter users on any website.
Here are examples of the comments that are on the Rotten Tomatoes page for Captain Marvel. They seem to be particularly active there since RT just announced yesterday that they are shutting down comments on movie pages prior to release date to cut down on trolls, just like these folks.
Just as a heads up for those who do not know who / what Gab is, it is a far-right neo-nazi social network alternative for Twitter. Its users include neo-nazis like Chris "Crying Nazi" Cantwell, former Breitbart personality Milo Yiannopolous, and the white supremacist Pittsburgh synagogue shooter.
Looks like there's a new extension, Dissenter, that allows users to add a comment thread to a website. That thread is visible to anyone else using Dissenter, and appears on that actual website (not aggregated on Gab).
So if I'm on Rotten Tomatoes, just as a general web surfer, I won't see all these dissenter entries?
That would be technologically impossible. Editing other websites' content without their permission is likely illegal, let alone would require access to source files, which is hacking, which is illegal.
The way I understand it, Dissenter offers an "overlay" of sorts to any website. It is my guess that it hosts a database somewhere that holds all the comments made on any website: the address of the site, the content, and the author. This layer is only accessible to the users of the extension.
If my understanding is correct, you can think of it as the Web's version of augmented reality: the underlying content is the same for everyone, but this particular layer requires a special set of tools to discover.
Nope, you will only see it if you have the extension on your browser
I updated the title a little to try to make it more clear that it's just via an extension.
That is fair, thanks for the clarification!
This sounds a lot like Google Sidewiki. That never really took off. I hope this doesn't either.