What we learned from the deplatforming of Donald Trump

Shortly after banning former President Donald Trump from social media platforms, Amazon Web Services said it would no longer host right-wing social media platform, Parler.

Following the move, Google and Apple each announced the Parler app would no longer be available in the Play Store and App Store.

Ramona Pringle, a tech expert and associate professor at Ryerson University, says that while deplatforming a site might be helpful, in the long-run it will result in people banding together in smaller groups on other sites.

“If they get pushed off into deeper corners, darker corners, and more private conversations, then it’s much harder to know what’s happening in those conversations,” she said.

Pringle added that it might be more effective to deplatform individuals as opposed to an entire site to lessen the spread of misinformation.

“Is it deplatforming an influencer, or is it deplatforming a community?” she asked. “These statistics about misinformation just plummeting following the deplatforming of Donald Trump is interesting, and I think there’s a lot we can learn from that in terms of the power and the responsibility that these companies have.”

Pringle said that pushing a community off a platform entirely could “fuel the anger.”