The Short Guide to Using MeWe, for formerly Facebook conservatives

Let’s say you’re a conservative, and after watching Big Tech attempt to single-handedly destroy Parler, blame Trump for inciting riots in the Capitol, and try to shutdown legitimate stock trading on Robinhood, you’re now really worried about social media censorship. You probably saw my previous posts on MeWe and NextDoor, and think there might just be no options.

Don’t lose hope! Since I couldn’t get Parler to test out, I double-downed and worked through the MeWe interface. If you need help building an account, there are hundreds of “How to get started on MeWe” videos to watch. After you create an account, do the following:

  1. If you liked memes, find a memes group. I would regularly browse Facebook and Reddit for memes. It brightened my days up and made me laugh. Reddit has become disappointingly hostile to conservatives, and Facebook is just part of the evil FAANG empire. MeWe has a pretty burgeoning list of meme groups. To find a meme group, on your home page click on “Browse Groups.” Simply type in Memes, and plenty pop up. I recommend “Meme’s From Everywhere” and “Funny memes and humor” as a start. There are plenty of darker and lighter groups, so experiment a bit and find what suits your tastes.
  2. Start a family group. A big reason for Facebook’s success is sharing pictures with your friends. My wife and I still want to share our family’s adventures with our friends, without the creepiness of Facebook sharing our pictures with others. To do that, we created a Family group and invited our friends to it. Now we can share photos and let our friends download and comment. We can even chat our upcoming plans to them. With your own group, its easy to get back to enjoying your friends as friends instead of focusing on where their politics don’t align with you.
  3. Replicate your interest groups. I never got into the groups on Facebook all that much, but on MeWe it really helps you link up with like minded people. I’m on a chainsaw group and I found a few home solutions for creosote buildup in my fireplace. The gardening group I’m part of helped me design a better fence for keeping the deer out of my garden. Its really easy to search the MeWe groups, find interests, and join groups.
  4. Tell the businesses your frequent. The ballet studio my girls attend uses Facebook to push out updates. That’s pretty common across businesses, and if you don’t have Facebook you miss out. We’re encouraging the studio to dump Facebook and switch to MeWe, since privacy for a ballet studio is pretty important, and the studio has a Christian background. Many businesses don’t even know there are other options, so helping them make the switch is key to breaking Facebook’s grip.
  5. Advocate for the missing features. I still need a livestream option, and neither MeWe nor Rumble have that yet. I also wish I could sell stuff on MeWe easily, but the privacy standards are pretty high, so NextDoor will have to suffice for now. You can communicate this to the developers, and with the explosion in growth they have, they are looking to keep their users. They are likely open to adding features, especially if its something their competitors don’t have.

I wish you the best on MeWe, maybe Peter will start a DaTechGuy group on MeWe so we can share thoughts about our favorite blog!

This post represents the views of the author and not those of the Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, or any other government agency.

Social Media Exodus: MeWe

For anyone that remembers Google Plus, it was actually a fairly slick setup for social media. You could have different circles of people, which made it easy to segregate the sections of your life. Maybe you have some super liberal friends, so you put them in one circle and don’t share your news feed with them. Or maybe your brother is a complete moron and loves to comment about your parenting. In that case, you cut him out of the family picture sharing but don’t mind letting him see your posts about deer hunting.

When Google Plus shut down, most of the members went to MeWe. MeWe brags of inherent security, not selling your information and not censoring. I signed up, not even needing an email (I just used my phone number), and blam, I was in.

And it was really empty.

Like, I didn’t know what to do next.

On of MeWe’s biggest downsides is that it is so privacy conscious that it forgets that it forget that people were willing to give up some privacy to get easily connected with their friends. Facebook loves suggesting friends, groups and everything else based on location, contacts and browsing history. MeWe doesn’t do that, and that’s not a bad thing, but the Mewe walkthrough (seemingly run by a chatbot) doesn’t tell you what to do next.

After a lot of frustration, I figured out how to search for groups. Soon I was on a sous vide group, a chainsaw group, and some news media groups. Now my news feed was full of something. Then I found a few friends and added them. I also created a church group so people could have discussions without feeling like Facebook was hanging in the shadows, ready to classify them as a hate group.

After about 2 weeks of use, I did find some great meme groups, which to be honest, was a large reason that I scan Facebook. I’m also on a non-conspiracy theorist conservative group, which is decently uplifting and better than Facebook discussions ever were. But there are a lot of gaps. I can’t livestream or even call anyone (like you can with Messenger) unless you pay money.

To be frank, I’m not jazzed about MeWe. I think its most compelling feature is having a private group that is truly private, so you can talk openly and not worry about being thrown to the angry pitchfork mob of social justice warriors. But as a Facebook replacement? Not in its current form. It would need a way better introduction for new users and more features that I used in Facebook like livestreaming. Until then, MeWe might make temporary gains, but its not going to be a full Facebook competitor.

This post represents the views of the author and not those of the Department of Defense, Department of the Navy, or any other government agency.