A lot has been made about the current meteoric rise of Parler as a safe space for the fringe (and not so fringe) right. Watching people who have been suspended from Twitter have a protracted meltdown is both fascinating and extremely concerning.
But what about the really safe spaces? Places like Parler and Voat certainly won’t censor Q accounts, but I can still get on there and point out logical fallacies or just spam this blog at them. No, I spent Thanksgiving week going into WeWake, one of the many attempts at making a Q-themed social media platform, to see what I would learn.
It was Thanksgiving week so I spent no more than 30 minutes a day on the platform. I didn’t go to dig for dirt, I just decided to see what a casual user would see.
Turns out you need to get approved for an account so I had to wait around for that. Once I got approved, the website was super pleasant to look at, and I immediately received a warm welcome from my new friends.
Thad Williams appears to be the owner and creator of the website. I have no idea if that’s a real name or not but he’s also extremely sweet and supportive. If I were a QAnon supporter fleeing Twitter this would be an amazing find.
I did find a, um…small issue with the UK Patriots group, that I assume was either made by an American or a troll.
The only red flag that hit on Monday was user Lone Wolf For Trump. Whether they are aware or not (and I suspect they are aware) that term was coined by white supremacist Louis Beam and is an apt descriptor for numerous acts of terrorism perpetrated by both white nationalists and ISIS.
Lone Wolf For Trump wants to set up CHAZ, but Q, in a nice remote area, which brings me to my Monday take-away:
TIL: People in CHAZ are no Longer American Citizens and Their Votes Don’t Count
Love bombing is a real thing. If my head wasn’t swimming with stories of people losing their loved ones to this cult I would be feeling extremely bad about this experiment. Everyone is super friendly towards this anonymous mute who joined their platform.
Don’t take my word for it, just ask this person who received a lot of emotional support from fellow ‘patriots’.
Took a little poke around the wider website before my allotted time was up. The platform is funded by PayPal and Bitcoin, not many surprises there. There’s also a Discord set up perfectly for evading bans, and a merchandise section.
PSA: Teespring has hard-coded their website to not accept QAnon search terms, but is happy to profit off of Q
I found a relatively innocuous looking but most definitely Q-themed storefront via WeWake and asked Teespring about it. I was told they supported free speech. When I asked if their dedication to free speech included profiteering off of a dangerous cult they dodged the issue. (As of the 5th of December I await an actual answer from them.)
For now I’m going to pretend a developer has gone rogue and coded in the blacklisted search terms and hats off to that person!
TIL: The British Army are Setting Up Quarantine Tents and This is Scary
You may think that over 150 people live on a training camp and therefore it’s very smart to have adequate facilities to keep your army operational during a pandemic. You would be wrong. These are obviously for civilians for some reason not adequately explained.
There’s a disconnect you see with Q followers where they insist that they’ve done a lot of research, yet when you press them on it, they’ve ‘read something on the internet’. But here’s the thing, reading about the latest Q theories is work. It’s a nebulous ever-shifting miasma of half-baked ideas trying to explain everything happening in the world. It isn’t valuable work, you’re not learning anything real or of use, but it is a lot of effort to keep up.
There’s also the internal peer-pressure to keep up. I found ‘Waking Up Your Neighbours’, a group dedicated to, well, brainwashing your neighbours. In it, someone suggested that you could read ‘The Storm – v 1.Q’ in a day, and that that counted as research. ‘The Storm’ is 290 pages of dense text that makes wild claims which require a large amount of time to thoroughly debunk every two sentences. You cannot read that and take it all in in one day. That is absurd.
That’s why I wrote a post to try and help Q followers break the cycle of constant reading/pressure, please use it if it might help someone you know.
Other than that, I joined the Discord server to see what was up.
It was interesting to see that disaffected patriots were treated with the sort of scorn I’d assume was reserved for skeptics. Like any other cult, leaving seems to be a one-way ticket to being ostracized by this seemingly wholesome group.
TIL: Rudy Guliani Was Totally Winning in Pennsylvania
If I were a professional I would spend more time on turkey day looking at WeWake but I am not and so I did not.
TIL: The Entire British Cabinet Have Been Put Under House Arrest
The theory says: COVID isn’t real. The lockdowns etc. have killed millions. Therefore the British government (for some reason?) are guilty of crimes against humanity and have been arrested. I don’t know who would have issued that arrest warrant. It doesn’t say. Very confusing.
If you were a Q-positive casual user of this website, you would be forgiven at this point for thinking everything is swell. Everyone is lovely unless you leave the cult, and it’s just stopping kids being kidnapped or whatever. What’s the harm?
Don’t be fooled. It took until Friday for me to find a proper mask-off post, but this stuff is always under the surface.
I also noticed, in a pattern you’ll see a lot in these spaces, that funding went from 33% to 75% of the total in one day. I assume that had something to do with the surge in Bitcoin value, but it remains interesting to see that large one-off payments really do make these spaces function.
TIL: There Are So Many Gates…
There wasn’t anything particularly explosive going on the day we were all collectively having a food hangover but this post just got me. Can we please stop saying X-Gate? It’s stupid.
Explosive times in Q-land. There had been earlier “reports” that a server was seized by American soldiers in Frankfurt, Germany. That server supposedly had all the incriminating evidence against the Deep State. QAnon is big in Germany, so I understand the connection, but it is odd that nobody live tweeted ‘Holy shit Americans are raiding buildings in our country, is this an act of war?” Especially because:
TIL: There Was A Firefight In Frankfurt
It took a while for this to develop, and frankly it’s disgusting. There was a firefight, you see, when American forces were heroically duking it out in the streets of Frankfurt. Only, they’re using the real deaths of real people to prop this up.
Michael Goodboe, CIA agent, died in Somalia from injuries sustained from an IED.
Capt. Seth Vernon Vandekamp, Chief Warrant Officer 3 Dallas Gearld Garza, Chief Warrant Officer 2 Marwan Sameh Ghabour, Staff Sgt. Kyle Robert McKee, and Sgt. Jeremy Cain Sherman died in a helicopter crash in Egypt while on a peacekeeping mission. Sgt. Sherman was only 23 years old.
Those men have families who love them. They were real people, doing real jobs, who really died. They should not be fodder for conspiracists longing for a day of the rope.
My week in Q-land is coming to an end. On Sunday the Gateway Pundit wanted me to know that the Republicans in Georgia love Joe Biden actually. They’re making sure the runoff is rigged actually. All hope for electioneering is lost.
That’s frightening and doesn’t portend great things in Georgia, but I thought it best to finish up allowing the Q people to explain, in their own words, why they keep coming back. What keeps them in their own fantasy-land online?