Is GAB a Free Speech Illusion

All that is written here is offered as In My Humble Opinion (aka IMHO).

GAB is a Conservative Free Speech Platform with some strange issues that have called me to question the authenticity of the Free Speech Part. Does Free Speech mean you can write whatever you want? I can write whatever I want, on my Computer, in LibreOffice that I’m using now. Is that Free Speech if I simply make .doc or .odt files and store them on my computer? No one reads them, it’s more like Recorded Thought than Free Speech.

To be Free Speech, you must have the ability to Speak to the Masses, or Write Articles Read by the Masses. Enter GAB.

GAB[.]AI (I have incarcerated the dot lest it create a URL Link in my Post) was the original name for GAB, oddly enough. Why AI?

.ai is the Internet country code top-level domain for Anguilla. It is administered by the government of Anguilla.

The term is popular with companies in the artificial intelligence industry. (Artificial Intelligence)

At the time, I had read that Anguilla was popular with Israeli Tourists, but due to the pandemic, those links are no longer readily available.

Gabbai (there’s an extra B) is a word, and is Pronounced the same as saying “Gab I” or “Gab A”.

From Wiki:

A gabbai (Hebrew: גבאי‎), also known as shamash (שמש‎, sometimes spelled shamas) or parnas or warden (UK, similar to churchwarden) is a beadle or sexton, a person who assists in the running of synagogue services in some way. The role may be undertaken on a voluntary or paid basis. A shamash (literally ‘servant’) or gabbai can also mean an assistant to a rabbi (particularly the secretary or personal assistant to a Hassidic rebbe).

Of course, Gab likely means:

Gab – Definition:

  • Verb (used without object), gabbed, gab·bing. – to talk or chat idly; chatter.
  • Noun – idle talk; chatter.

But the GAB[.]ai really makes one wonder. Due to struggles after a tragedy, in Pittsburgh, that was wrongly blamed on GAB, and the resultant loss of Domain, Providers, Payment Servers, etc. (whatever the correct wording is), GAB reemerged as GAB[.]com

Are our comments being freely distributed for viewing to the entire membership of GAB, except for those that Block or Mute specific users, and with an understanding that there is a “Pro-Feed” and rules for posts appear there are defined, or is there an Algorithm that limits who sees our Posts?

What I have noticed is that I have X amount of Notifications, mostly from the same individuals (and always welcome), despite growing numbers of followers. Overall, my Notifications aren’t really increasing, not according to the growth in followers and the growth, purportedly astronomical, in GAB members. Despite being active posting on the day before I penned this, during the approximately 6+ hours that I was in bed, I only received 1 Notification. This morning, in response to a few posts, I received a few more, from the same, always welcome, regulars, but where is the HUGE INFLUX of New Members, and people that follow my posts? Strangely missing.

  • If I post to the Home, (i.e. the General Thread), and I don’t include a Contact List in the Post, how do people that follow my posts actually see what I wrote? Apparently, in short, they don’t.
  • If they happen to be on GAB as I am posting, and they are on the Home Thread, is that when they might see my posts? Offhand, I’d say yes. But they may miss them as well, as many people write, the thread grows in length, we only have so much time, and can’t get to every post.

But the previous paragraph reveals a few things, in theory.

1. There appears to be a grouping of people that have the ability to see our posts. Our followers. And if there is a grouping, it must be possible to make other groupings. What if GAB doesn’t like what you write, doesn’t like you personally, and has the ability to limit what others see of what you post? That would be juvenile. But if you’re paying for Pro, it may be more complicated than that, legally. If I’m paying for service, and hypothetically, something or someone, is limiting what actually goes into the Home thread for the followers to see, then I may be being denied service I thought I was paying for.

2. If I’m new to GAB, and posting on the Home Thread, I see a multitude of posts where I am not following the author of the post. So it can’t be that you only see the comments of those you follow. That means that all the new members of GAB, the huge influx of new members disaffected from other Social Media Sites, must be able to see your posts if they happen to be on the Home thread. If that is true, in the purest sense, then we all should see a big increase in Notifications due to these new GAB Members, but I’ll bet there are more than a few reading this that finds that is not the case.

On the other hand, many of us are probably aware of people posting popular things, a meme, a motivational thought, that, in the course of an hour, has 500 likes, I’ve seen one with 1600 Likes in an hour or so. Are we to believe that the content was that inspiring that so many people bothered to click like, or that, magically, the person’s followers just happened to be on GAB reading the Home Thread at the moment that the person posted it? I’ve seen people with Likes that exceeded their followers, so who was liking their posts? The same multitudes that either don’t like our posts, have us Muted/Blocked, or are they, for some reason, not seeing our posts?

3. Does GAB detail how Posts are made available to the members? I’d like to read it. Why do we follow others and others follow us if the content is not directed more towards followers.

One gentleman from GAB replied to my concern that people are being Squelched thus:

You’re incorrect, we don’t do any sort of ‘squelching’ or anything even close to that. Your followers and group members are seeing your posts, if they are logging in. Sounds like you get more notifications than I do, tbh, but I’m not very active.

How do my Followers See my Posts unless they happen to be on the Home Thread when I’m posting? My Posts do not go to them, as a Notification, unless I include a Contact List in the Post. If I followed 1000 people, and I received a notification every time they post, I’d be inundated by Notifications. So logically, they must only see it if they are on the Home Thread while I am posting. So how does anyone get 1600 Likes in an Hour? 1600 People, exceeding their followers, just happened to be online when they posted, and just happened to see the post, and just happened to Like the Post? Seriously?

Folks, something just doesn’t seem right, or something isn’t upfront, with the way some of our posts are handled and seen by others. And Notifications Do Not Seem to Be Functioning Correctly.

  • One man used to complain of too many Notifications, so he asked that if anyone is to respond to his post, to please not like his post, as he takes the Response to be the same as a Like unless otherwise specified. He now says he’s not really getting Notifications and has taken up Gardening until things return to normal.
  • Another GAB Member, just yesterday, said Notifications aren’t working properly, and he asked that people visit his Profile and read his posts there. Why won’t GAB Address this?

I have Groups, few visit. After a career in Maintenance, at work it seemed like everyone talked about Meters, and in general, most people I know like Air Guns, but few on GAB do for either. Something just doesn’t seem right with the GAB experience.

And folks, please, please, please, do not Drool over Andrew Torba’s posts. My gawd, if he said he had an infected pimple on this ass, 2500 people in the first hour of it being posted would like the post, and repost. Of course, pithy, relevant, interesting, posts should be liked, but if some of you like them only because Torba (or anyone) posted them, rethink that action.

This is how we got into trouble with Republicans. We worship them without circumspection, and that in turn, lets them betray us. It was suggested that Torba reposts some simple posts, and of course, people pile likes on that, and it was suggested that other BIG GAB accounts do likewise, and of course people pile on the likes, take a minute to think if a GAB that only consists of mirrors is what you want (people saying things that are identical to how you feel, not necessarily something that makes you think).

We can all like the obvious, and until a day or two ago, I liked over a hundred posts a day. I like the original post, or the first one that I saw that posted something I agree with, and I like the same post if Reposted by others, or if Posted again by others. If I think the post has merits, it has merits no matter how often I see it, someone took the time to bring it to GAB, even if I already saw it. There are clearly people posting interesting things, important things, and they are being ignored by GAB Members, while some people that drown in likes sometimes offer platitudes and receive thousands of likes.


Air Gun Logo

Many of what I call the Regulars belonged to a Group on Mighty Networks called the Underground Revolution. Butterflies and Purrs managed it. Although we had a falling out, I always respected the site and regretted the misunderstanding that occurred. Butterflies once said that I was not liking the comments in the sub-thread of a thread I started. Sounds like it came back to haunt me. I miss that website, but a Group on GAB exists under that name and is frequented by some of those regulars.

For GAB I would suggest the following: 

  1. A Status Link that reveals problems that they are having. 
  2. Disclosure of how posts are viewed by the General Membership (precluding those that Block/Mute others), so that everyone is able to better understand the process.
  3. Users should refrain from escalating the likes of posts that already have a ton of likes. If you’re one of the few that posts a meme and gets 1600 Likes, you hardly need a ton more likes to build your ego. Most likely what they posted is not truly unique, nothing that hasn’t been addressed in other memes, in news articles, etc., of course, it should be liked, but after 1000 likes, I’m pretty sure you can read it without liking it without causing irreparable harm to the poster.
  4. There has been a discussion of Trains, I believe, some people purportedly from Twitter that are obsessed with followers and numbers, and not content. Entire posts that are nothing but extended contact lists, all the way to the character limit of a post. It just seems that “If you support this Platitude hit Repost and not Like” posts that we all have seen. Those posts are more about Numbers than content. Folks, tone it down with Reposting those posts, they are not about the message, they are about amassing likes and reposts. 
  5. Anything Else. Respond to me on GAB, and if you have a good idea, I’ll add it here and below. 

Truth - Thomas Paine

Truth - People Hate It

This one, below, this is what I think when I see others posting valuable things that largely go ignored by GAB users while some GAB Users are praising fluff. 

Standing Alone for Truth

Below, this is not meant as a Statement in this case, just in General. As the Conservative Media cries about being censored by Facebook, Twitter, etc., please know that Conservative Media regularly censors comments to their sites using Shadow Banning or outright Banning.


Author: Dr-Artaud

A Doctor that is not a Doctor, but named after a character in the movie "No Such Thing", as is the Avatar.

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