Big internet served notice by Rumble acquisition of Locals

The oligopoly dominating social media and the digital economy faces an emergent threat in the form of the newly combined Rumble and Locals.

Rumble is a social video platform that positions itself in competition with Google-owned YouTube. As such it has also served as a haven for content producers frustrated by the restrictions, censorship and constantly shifting goalposts imposed by such internet incumbents. Inevitably that has resulted in the establishment attempting to characterise the platform as somehow intrinsically more harmful than those it competes with.

Locals is a social media platform that also seeks to provide an alternative to crowd-funding services such as Patreon, offering an environment in which content producers can develop a commercial relationship with their audience, a bit like a social media equivalent of Substack. We have our criticisms of Locals but unconditionally welcome the injection of competition into an internet economy dominated by a handful of US giants.

The decision by Rumble to acquire Locals, therefore, makes sense. The eventual result of the acquisition, the terms of which haven’t been revealed, could be a one-stop-shop for independent content producers, and even established brands, seeking an alternative to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Hopefully Rumble hasn’t made the same mistake as a previous social media disruptor of being too reliant on another member of the tech oligopoly for its infrastructure.

“We are building the rails to a new tech ecosystem that will responsibly free everyone from the restraints of editorial control,” said Rumble CEO Chris Pavlovski. “Locals will provide our Rumble users a new way to generate revenue, one that is not influenced by corporate advertisers and special interests. All our creators can now build a direct stream of revenue with their audience through subscriptions, allowing creators to take control of their valuable content.”

“We are excited to see Locals continue our growth and vision as part of Rumble. Together we are building a new ecosystem for creators,” said Assaf Lev, CEO of Locals. “Becoming part of Rumble will give Locals’ creators new opportunities to expand their audiences while retaining control of their data. Both Rumble and Locals believe in the importance of allowing creators to express their opinions, interact with their supporters and make money from subscription.”

Locals was created when prominent YouTube producer Dave Rubin was so appalled by Patreon’s unilateral cancelling of one of its major users that he felt compelled to create an alternative. Rumble has been around for longer but seems to have a similar provenance. Together they have a fighting chance at breaking the unaccountable oligopoly that has come to dominate the Internet public square and the broader digital economy.

Here’s Rubin’s YouTube video discussing the news.

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  1. Avatar pamela Felten 26/10/2021 @ 9:52 pm

    Awesome. God Speed..

  2. Avatar Ziethy Martin 26/10/2021 @ 11:19 pm

    Purchased why I thought it was three months to Support Dan Bon Gino. Why am I now being asked to purchase 12 months without connection I want?

  3. Avatar vester l steele 27/10/2021 @ 2:08 am

    keep it true please thank you vester l steele from hughes , ar

  4. Avatar Todd Rohovich 27/10/2021 @ 2:10 am

    Glad someone did something!!!

  5. Avatar Ken McCrady 27/10/2021 @ 3:21 am

    Will this be a Free Speech forum? I’m currently in Facebook jail for the 8th time; for spreading the Truth! Apparently telling the truth is against Facebook’s “community standards”!

  6. Avatar Michael McCarthy 27/10/2021 @ 5:01 am

    Awesome ??

  7. Avatar Peter boyadjian 27/10/2021 @ 7:05 am

    Please hurry up. We want to kick the tweets twitter ass. I believe his name is Jack Dorsey or some such. They say he is good hearted but really is an evil enforcer of liberal hate.

  8. Avatar Ellen Beckwith 27/10/2021 @ 2:54 pm

    I’m glad I found this platform!! I’m tired of the censorship!!!

  9. Avatar Fred Wright 27/10/2021 @ 7:42 pm

    Thanks Dave for going out on a limb and fighting this battle that most of us can’t. Really appreciate what you are doing. Just signed up for rumble. Not very tech savy but I’m here. Thank you to your whole team.

  10. Avatar Soul 28/10/2021 @ 5:34 pm

    It’s already too late. Because you failed to take out the those who commit treason out of power they have already destroyed America and turned your kids against you. You failed because you are not brave

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