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Udupa, Sahana ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3647-9570 (13. October 2021): Small Platforms and the Gray Zones of Deep Extreme Speech. In: MediaWell

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Recent trends of migration to smaller social media platforms among right wing actors have raised a caution that an excessive focus on large, transnational social media companies might lose sight of the volatile spaces of homegrown and niche platforms, which have begun to offer diverse “alternative” avenues to extreme speech. Such trends, which drew global media attention during Trump supporters’ attempted exodus to Parler, are also gaining salience in Europe and the global South. Turning the focus to these developments, this article pries open three pertinent features of extreme speech on small platforms: its propensity to migrate between platforms, its embeddedness in domestic regulatory and technological innovations, and its evolving role in facilitating hateful language and disinformation in and through deep trust-based networks. Rather than assuming that smaller platforms are on an obvious trajectory toward progressive alternatives, their diverse entanglements with exclusionary extreme speech, I suggest, should be an important focal point for policy measures.

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