As you’ve probably heard by now, thanks to Joe Rogan’s endorsement a few days ago, GETTR is having a moment. But does the platform have real staying power? Will it last? Here are two macro reasons the answer could be “yes.”
Establishment social continues to ban interesting people from their platforms
The minute I was first exposed to Donald Trump as a political candidate in like 2015, I turned to YouTube to watch video compilations of him and his antics. It was good content, him firing everybody, stroking checks, and hanging out in skyscrapers. Made me laugh.
His tweets over the years often had the same effect.
And then just last week, I listened to Rogan’s podcast with Robert Malone. Really interesting and revealing stuff about the vaxx and covid and everything that goes on behind the scenes. So I started following Malone on LinkedIn, figuring it’d be good to have his content pop up in my feed, only to then learn he’d been booted from the platform shortly after. Okay fine, I guess I’ll read him on Substack and follow him on GETTR.
The point is that the content is the product. And content comes from personalities. Both Trump and Malone are, if nothing else, interesting personalities.
And they’ve both been booted from establishment social media.
By continuing to kick interesting personalities off their platforms, establishment social is basically taking a product that is in demand off of their shelves, when a competitor down the street has it in stock and on display.
This has been happening for a while now, and the effects are starting to compound. Eventually, so few interesting people will be left on establishment social that an opening will be revealed for a new platform, one like GETTR, to step right into and fulfill.
Conservative publishers are incentivized to diversify their traffic sources
Publishers across the political spectrum are overwhelmingly dependent on Big Tech for their traffic acquisition. Readers don’t always come directly to websites, they often stumble in every now and again by way of Google, Facebook, or Twitter.
Unfortunately for conservative publishers, these Big-Tech-controlled distribution channels have proven to behave like traffic hoses that can be turned on and off depending on whichever way the wind is blowing. And as we know, here the wind only blows one way.
For those publishers, traffic is money. The economics are simple. Traffic means ad unit impressions and a thousand ad unit impressions yield a payout. Over and over again.
And the Big-Tech traffic hoses are running ever drier for conservative publishers due to sly changes in content ranking algorithms that disproportionately affect right leaning sites, many of which grew rapidly in the 2010s by mastering social distribution, especially on Facebook, eclipsing old-timey newspapers in audience and influence.
Sites like Ben Shapiro’s The Daily Wire have performed extremely well on Facebook over the years, but are now seeing their traffic capped in rather obvious ways.
Which is all to say, conservative publishers would love nothing more than to diversify their traffic away from establishment social media by leaning into new channels, new channels owned by technology companies that are not existentially hostile toward them.
All in all, the circumstances here might allow for GETTR to tap into and connect a reader base to a publisher and personality base, creating a loop of those coveted daily active users.
Then they would just need to figure out monetization. Easy, right?
And as for how GETTR is different from Parler? Maybe it’s not. It just stumbled into better timing.