Posted by raincoat in Ramble

Basically, to grow Ramble, existing users could invite specific people instead of advertising broadly. Quality > quantity

Since registration needs to be turned off right now anyways because of abuse, to grow the user base current users of the site could invite specific quality people from other sites, maybe with invite codes or by just sharing a secret date that registration opens. Those invited people can invite others and at some point we might have enough people that registration can be open to everyone again because there will be more people coming on the site regularly and moderating or reporting illegal activity. Invites aren’t great for the privacy of either the inviter or invitee but could be used in the beginning to get a really good user base that will attract more quality users after the forum is opened up.

For a free speech site to really change society, it needs to have an influence on the thinking of at least some people who have high positions in society, such as CEOs, business leaders, as well as high earners who can fund solutions, people with the technical skills to implement solutions, academics who can influence the culture in universities etc. These tend to be smarter than average people who are turned off of a lot of the content on, for example, Bitchute or the .win forums. They usually don't have time or interest in sifting though nonsense to find the good content. I’m not saying to turn this into some kind of Mensa circlejerk, but it’s good for smart people to have uncensored forums to get info and ideas in front of other smart people for critique and discussion, without the space being flooded by theories about Q, black eyed children, demonic alien parasites etc.

r/conspiracy on Reddit has a lot of good content and is one of the only major spaces left for relatively free speech on Reddit, but there are a lot of gullible people there too. Occasionally I see users on r/conspiracy who stand out as critical thinkers who are not just parroting the latest thing from Stew Peters or Charlie Ward. Sometimes they only have a few upvotes because most people have attention spans too short to read through what they have to say. So those are the kinds of people I would want to invite. I sometimes save interesting Reddit posts I come across so I could go through them and invite some people. Other people might want to invite good posters from other forums they go to. It could be people from Linux forums, programming forums, investing forums, or whatever. I think the main thing is to not invite too many users from other small free speech platforms, so that other free speech platforms are not made worse by siphoning away the best users.

Aside from schizo theories like “Sodomy taught by Dracos to Nazis as Atlantis art to infuse LGBTPB demon spirits to create child sex slave alters” (that's a real Bitchute video description), another issue on certain free speech sites, though some consider this a feature, is that some sites (like voat) are echo chambers that drive the vast majority of people away. To be clear, I don't think people should self censor and still think all speech should be allowed here, but as long as we're inviting a variety of people from different sites, it won't become an echo chamber and “I wish the holocaust actually happened” type posts will not be frequent enough to drive potential users away. The main practical precaution, if inviting leftists, would be to avoid inviting people who are pro-censorship since they might try to ruin the website any way they can.



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Wahaha wrote

I cannot think of anyone that I would invite, though.


raincoat OP wrote

I can only think of one person off the top of my head, but for me it would be easy to find more since I have a reddit account where I save interesting posts. If you go on other forums, you could just keep the idea in the back of your mind when reading and if there's someone who's really knowledgeable about a subject or has interesting ideas or research, you could invite them or make a note of their username to invite later. Like I said, it doesn't have to be a strict Mensa thing. The main caution is to avoid inviting NPCs from either the left or the right.


Rambler wrote

I haven't forgotten about this place, though I do have regret that my focus being temporarily shifted elsewhere has negatively impacted RAMBLE. I've got a lot going on both in terms of my career and personal life.

I'm going to try to manage and balance my time better. I'd like to shift things back into gear here.

/u/raincoat , thanks for this post. Glad to see it.


raincoat OP wrote

I get it. It’s really easy for tasks, errands etc. to pile up during times like that. Sometimes you have to block out almost everything except the most important and urgent tasks (and maybe hire or get help for some tasks). Don’t worry too much about how the site is doing. The functionality is good. I think most people report bugs so you are aware of them, not to put pressure. And feature requests are just ideas. The site has a lot of potential even with no new features. Guessing it might just need around 15 or 20 more users to really start taking off. An invite system could outsource the work of promoting the site, but it makes sense to postpone any coding and new users coming to the site until you’re less busy. Invite-only could reduce the regular bad actors but probably not the ones who emit a mysterious light.


Rambler wrote

Well, there is still the idea of rebranding to which is a domain I own that I'd like to put to use and I think is a better 'fit' for what I really wanted this site to be.

The thing about this site is the software that runs it is near prohibitively difficult to work with and is developed by someone who is completely against the idea of this site using her software. (It's open source and public: )

My coding skills are, well, pretty non-existent. Outside of some basic PHP and bash scripting you won't see anything created from scratch by me. And trust me, I've gone through the entire fleet of available projects found of github / gitlab as well over the last few months.

Unfortunately, anything like feature requests are just out of the picture at this time. If someone is actually capable of the task and wishes to implement some changes, I'll happily sponsor an adequate VPS for a non-public RAMBLE dev site.

Definitely a lot of unmet potential here. I'd like to keep the site more geared privacy and technology, but have it still be a source of news and discussion, even if it's controversial.


raincoat OP wrote

I think the domain is really memorable. The “pw” makes me think of password, which fits since a lot of the discussion here is security related. OTR can stand for a lot of things. I’m guessing you might be thinking of “off the record” but others might see a url like as just a series of randomly picked letters and not be able to remember it.

IMO it doesn’t make sense to make code open source and then get mad when people use it. Maybe she would feel better about it if you put something like “built with postmill” at the bottom of the page and put a link to the postmill repo. I don’t know why she’s mad though. Maybe after the community has grown more, some users who have a lot of experience with PHP can take a thorough look at the project and make the judgment call about whether it would be easier to continue with the postmill code or make something from scratch.

I think it’s good to have plenty of tech and privacy content. A lot of crazy tech related things are going to happen in the coming years. I think CBDC is the most urgent danger but there are also advances in AI, robots, gene editing, brain chips etc. that could be used in harmful ways by people in power so it will be important for there to be private censorship free spaces where people who are knowledgeable about technology can talk about these things.

If the site does evolve into something more broad, people can still follow the tech forums though. I think one disadvantage if it is too technology focused is that the site could miss out on some really interesting users. For example, a historian could come across the site or be invited to it and then after seeing the front page full of computer and privacy related links, feel like it isn’t the right site for them. I think some of the most interesting conversations happen when people from different fields and backgrounds come together to talk. For example, in response to some news article someone posts about the war in Ukraine, a historian, an economist, and a veteran discuss it in the comments. That’s probably going to be more interesting than replies from a few security researchers and Linux nerds. Another example, a programmer makes a post talking about a stock trading bot that he wrote. He might appreciate input from someone who works in finance or trading.


bottticelli wrote

Thank you, gentlemen raincoat and Rambler, for discussing this issue. Even though I am a random guy passing by, the concerns you raise do touch me. I feel that free speech issues should never be forgotten here. It would be of my great pleasure to try raising this topic from ashes and encourage other forum users having a look and thinking about it one more time.

Meanwhile, I will try to help in increasing the awareness, despite the smallness of my resource. Absolute freedom of speech must exist not only for the sake of conspiracy giggling.