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Gab Did Something Big
Surpasses anything else out there.
This past week Gab released a total overhaul of our entire user interface. The site is more user friendly, fast, and familiar. Our community of millions of people from around the world continues to grow despite the many challenges we have faced from Silcion Valley tyrants. If you haven't been on Gab for a while now is the time to come back and check it out. The new Gab offers a PWA (Progressive Web Application) which means you can install the new site directly on your iPhone, Android, or desktop PC/Mac.
We don't know anything about PWAs, nor can we understand why one would want to install something client-side, nor will we ever smudge the screen of a 'smartphone' (what an inappropriate name) but we do know that, yes, Gab did something big.
Gab has been the way to go for some time now. We ran afoul of Twitter and Vijaya a few years back in the wake of a kerfuffle with the Atlantic Council. Our friends in Sweden began a mass-migration in the wake of a government announcement of a clap-down on free speech - one user, 'Micke K', was almost single-handedly responsible for bringing over one thousand refugees to the platform. Similar things happened for other countries.
The Gab code was initially crafted by Ekrem Büyükkaya from Turkey. He suffered a lot of abuse at the hands of the old Twitter crowd and so finally cashed in his chips.
At the same time, a move to create a branch of Mastodon was underway, and new coders were recruited. The Mastodon fork met with some disapproval, and over time the reliability of the code got worse. After a while, one got used to incidental bloopers in code updates that never got fixed. Things seemed hopeless.
Now this. And ergonomically and substantively this surpasses anything else out there, on any platform, and it sure looks better than Twitter.
Whoever made the redesign of Twitter needs to go back to design school - it's full of sophomoric (and freshman-level) misconceptions and actually looks pretty ugly.
The new Gab interface is a masterpiece of understatement. The user experience approaches that holy grail of everything being where you expect it to be, with everything working exactly how you expect it to work.
One already famous exception is the drop down into the coveted 'Darth Mode' - it's hard to find. But it's there. And when you get there, nothing is the same anymore. You actually get three modes: ordinary white, Darth, and something in between. (We like pure Darth.)
Everything has changed - the widgets, the help texts, the layout. It almost feels tactile, even though you know it's not. You want to click on stuff because it feels so cool.
Welcome to the Real World
Other platforms try to create 'good tone' and cute stuff like that. Not Gab. At Gab you're both protected and limited by current legislation, that legislation applying in the legal jurisdiction. Gab is registered in the US, so US law applies, and the US has always been good about free speech. The famous Swedish Flashback forum, where about one in eight people in the country are members, is registered in New York City for precisely this reason. If it's legal in the US, it's legal on Gab. Conversely of course if it's not legal there, then it's not legal on Gab either, for if you do something illegal there, it can't be allowed and both you and Gab get in trouble.
There are a lot of idiots on Gab, but you don't have to run into them. There are a lot of idiots in the real world too, in case you didn't notice. But that's the real world.
You can of course shut them out. You can block or mute, mute being preferred, as it doesn't lead to a confrontation. Out of sight, out of mind, just like in the real world.
Glitches & Perks
There are still glitches in the Gab machinery. Propagating posts from groups to timelines and back again is slow. Gab doesn't have the superstructure of Twitter.
But there are also some surprise perks with the makeover. Notifications work correctly again, something Twitter seemingly can't get right anymore. So it's a bit of one and the other.
There's also a curious circle next to the Publish button that just sits there and does nothing - what's that all about?
But as Darth Mode is the opposite of White Mode, this new Gab is night and day with what's gone before - and in so many ways night and day with the other platforms out there.
The YouTube embeds are better than ever, although some people on smartphone platforms have experienced glitches. (Don't they always!)
They don't rely on sponsors and adverts on Gab. No one will influence or put pressure on them to do what they don't want to do. So you're encouraged to join the 'Pro' programme and give them a small monthly donation. It's worth it.
Give Gab a try. Check out the neighbourhoods. Find a nice crowd and settle down. We Swedes are over at Swegab and we're close to one thousand active members today. Sign up and say hello.
This Gab makeover proves that it was worth it. This Gab makeover proves that the Gab coders can be better than the sorry losers at Twitter who have, over the years, proven to be some of the most comical losers in the world.
This Gab makeover proves hopefully that free speech can win out in the end and we can be one world at peace.
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