Sick to death of the lack of privacy from Facebook (and Insta, and Whatsapp, which it owns) Try these alternative social media sites instead!
By Jody McCutcheon
Recently, many people have been searching for alternative social media sites after feeling seriously betrayed by the social media giants.
Whistleblower Edward Snowden decried Facebook as being ‘surveillance disguised as social media‘, since the CIA and NSA have long been monitoring all of our activities on that platform – every like, post and comment.
Using nine internet firms including Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Yahoo, the NSA tracked online communications in a sweeping surveillance programme known as Prism. Britain’s electronic eavesdropping agency GCHQ was also accused of gathering information on the online companies via Prism.
But no matter where you live or who you are, through Facebook, Prism knows your name, address, and even has a database to be able to spot you via your personal pictures anywhere in the world, thanks to CCTV and facial recognition cameras and Facebook’s facial recognition software.
Your Personal Data…For Sale
Facebook has also been caught selling our data to every corporation and organization that comes a-knocking – even really nefarious ones like the CIA and Cambridge Analytica. And let’s not forget that Facebook also owns two of the other most popular social media sites in the world: Whatsapp and Instagram. Do you really feel comfortable using those now?
And then there’s Google-owned YouTube. Once a way to communicate news and ideas to the world via video, it has more or less blacklisted many non-traditional ideologies it doesn’t like—for example, they’ve hidden LGBTQ content and censored or demonetized channels they consider to be ‘alt right’. No surprises there, since Google has also lowered the rankings of any sites they feel go against their political position, calling those ‘fake news’. (And if you’re looking for an alternative to Google, that’s a great idea too! Just click here).
Right now, their focus is on anything against the mainstream narratives on political issues like Syria or Russia. But how long before they bury alternative health news that threatens mainstream medicine, information about veganism that threatens beef and milk lobby groups, or even corporate disasters similar to what happened at Rana Plaza? We have many reasons to worry.
Despite all these pitfalls, social media still has its claws in us. We’re social creatures. It fills a need. We want to connect, to share, to stay informed. Social media is basically a newspaper, greeting card and a personal letter all rolled up in one—and interactive, to boot. No wonder some of us are hesitant to quit social media altogether, despite all the caveats.
But with mainstay sites like Facebook and YouTube behaving so badly, doesn’t it make sense to look for alternative social media sites for your connection fix, while also taking more control of your own privacy and data protection?
Below are what we think are seven of the best Facebook alternatives, and new options to choose instead of more mainstream social media sites.
10+ Alternative Social Media Sites We Hope Will Crush Facebook
“Like Facebook, but with privacy.” That’s the motto of MeWe. Engineered with privacy in mind, MeWe sticks two fingers up to Facebook and other social media companies with a revolutionary service that emphasises privacy and social sharing where people can be their real, uncensored selves. Benefits include:
- No Ads
- Zero Spyware
- Free of political biases or agendas
- Never any facial recognition
- No newsfeed or content manipulation
- MeWe members are #Not4Sale and enjoy the protection of a Privacy Bill Of Rights.
Available on iOS, Android, and desktop, MeWe is an integrated social network and chat app with all the features people love, including:
- private 1:1 and group chat
- private and open groups
- disappearing content
- custom camera with Gif creation
- live voice and live video
- next-gen voice messaging
- secret chat with double-ratchet encryption
- personal social cloud
- custom group profiles
…and much more.
MeWe members enjoy total control over what they share along with full ownership of their content and data, which will never be sold. The next-gen social networking platform allows members to see every post, chat, comment, etc., made by individuals and groups they are connected to, in true timeline order with no interference.
Calling itself The Creators Network, Ello is a Pinterest-like network launched in 2014 for those who create art or enjoy looking at others’ art. Your profile is based on your interests and your preferred content (writing, architecture, visual art, etc.). The more wide-ranging your interests, the more categories you can choose. Once you’re set up, your feed consists of posts catered to your specific interests. You can comment, like, repost, follow and buy, and meet new people in the ‘Discover’ section. Best of all? You can also share and sell your own content.
Ello is free to use, although they’re considering the idea of offering some paid services in the future. And with the goal of being the alternative social media network of choice, Ello is marketed on three principles.
- They don’t sell user data to advertisers or third parties. In fact, data collection is restricted to what you provide on the Settings page and in posts: name, email address, location, creator type, etc. The rest of your data is anonymized.
- They are emphatically ad-free.
- They don’t force you to use your real name.
If you’re the creative type, Ello could be the social network for you. It even offers an opportunity to earn commission on the sale of your art.
Diaspora is an interesting case study. The creators of this open-source project were obviously very skeptical about centralized power, so they dreamed up a decentralized system. Launched in 2010, the Diaspora platform actually consists of many different networks, called pods.
Ad-free, Diaspora is built on three egalitarian philosophies: decentralization, freedom and privacy, thus returning social networking to the people. Similar to the Facebook setup, you can post status updates, share content and leave comments on others’ posts.
Developers encourage users to report offensive content, as when ISIS propaganda surfaced on the network in 2014. Otherwise, censorship can only happen with approval by pod admins.
Since it’s decentralized, Diaspora can’t be owned by any one individual or corporation. Data is carried on individual pods, rather than being held by a central provider. Indeed, with enough knowhow, you can even operate your own pod, which basically acts as a server. Thus you can be certain that your private data remains private.
You really do own your own data and control your own privacy settings. Otherwise, you can register at any pod of your choosing, communicate with any other user on any pod and download desired data from the network at your leisure. You choose who reads your posts. And you needn’t use your real name.
As far as I can tell, Vero is one of the most ethical Facebook alternatives out there. It’s a subscription based social network that presents itself as “a social network for anyone who loves anything enough to share it – and wants control over who they share it with. Just like we do in real life.”
Vero is ad-free and never collects your data. It can do this because it’s based on a totally different business model to Facebook. The latter actually needs to mine its users’ data in order to make a profit. On the other hand, Vero only collects some usage data, which is used to see how often the app is used, but note that this option by default is turned off. That’s quite unlike Facebook, where users can go into settings and adjust some of them to be more private, but ultimately have zero control over what is being done with their information.
Also, unlike Facebook, Vero won’t mess with algorithms, won’t shadowban posts, won’t censor information, and isn’t designed to be addictive.
Launched in 2017 in the wake of YouTube’s stricter censorship and demonetization policies, this YouTube competitor is a peer-to-peer video hosting service. The idea behind Bitchute is similar to Diaspora’s decentralization concept: the site uses WebTorrent to operate P2P video-sharing over the BitTorrent network. WebTorrent works inside web browsers and requires no installation.
The cost of bandwidth is normally the biggest obstacle for new video-sharing platforms. With their ad revenue, YouTube can afford it—but consequently, they must also toe their advertisers’ censorship line. This isn’t a problem for Bitchute: they needn’t provide bandwidth because users provide their own.
To register with Bitchute, you can give your name or remain anonymous. In order for Bitchute to collect your personal information, you must give consent. Rest assured, unlike YouTube and Facebook, they won’t sell it to third parties or advertisers. But refusal to offer your personal information may result in an inability to engage in certain service-related activities.
This blockchain-based blogging and social networking site started in 2016. Perhaps the most innovative alternative to mainstream social media sites, it rewards authors with payments for their contributions with a cryptocurrency called Steem. You don’t mine Steem with an expensive computer rig, but rather by creating and commenting on content, which then is written to the Steem blockchain and stored in a permanent blockchain ledger.
So far, Steemit claims over 900K user accounts and over USD$40,000,000 of payments to contributors – incredibly innovative, considering Facebook uses all our content that we give for free, in order for them to make a profit. It’s free to create one account and post content, but if you want to create multiple accounts (which theoretically would allow you to post and vote on more content), you’re charged a fee.
You must provide an email address and phone number to join, thus allowing admin to verify that each user has signed up for only one free account. Anonymity isn’t discouraged, but if you claim to be someone specific, you must give evidence that you are that person.
This is the perfect Whatsapp alternative. You can send messages and make voice calls the same way you would with Whatsapp, but the difference is that Telegram messages are heavily encrypted and can self-destruct.
Telegram client apps are available for Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Windows NT, macOS and Linux. Users can send messages and exchange photos, videos, stickers, audio and files of any type.
Telegram’s client-side code is open-source software but the source code for recent versions is not always immediately published, whereas its server-side code is closed-source and proprietary. So far, there are around 200 million monthly users, and numbers are growing!
Messages and media in Telegram are encrypted when stored on its servers, and the client-server communication is also encrypted. The service provides end-to-end encryption for voice calls, and optional end-to-end encrypted “secret” chats between two online users, yet not for groups or channels.
Telegram’s security model has been criticized for permanently storing all contacts, messages and media together with their decryption keys on its servers by default and by not enabling end-to-end encryption for messages by default. However, its founder, Pavel Durov, has argued that this is because it helps to avoid third-party unsecure backups, and to allow users to access messages and files from any device.
This is a community-owned social networking platform that rewards its users for their activities online, kind of like Steemit, mentioned above. They do this with paying users in crypto currency and providing members with more views on their posted content.
This Facebook alternative monitors its users’ daily contributions and relative to the community. Users can use their tokens to promote their content, or to crowdfund other users through monthly subscriptions to their exclusive content and services.
Minds was co-founded in 2011 by Bill Ottman and John Ottman as an alternative to social networks such as Facebook, which they believe abuses digital rights. Other co-founders were Mark Harding, Ian Crossland, and Jack Ottman. The site launched in 2015, and now counts over 1.5 million registered users.
Most importantly, the Minds social network was created on the concepts of freedom of speech, transparency, privacy and democracy.
Apparently, Edward Snowden himself uses this app every day! And no wonder. State-of-the-art end-to-end encryption (powered by the open source Signal Protocol) keeps your conversations secure.
Signal uses the Internet to send one-to-one and group messages, which can include files, voice notes, emojis, GIFs, images and videos – just like Facebook’s Whatsapp or Messenger. Its mobile apps can also make one-to-one voice and video calls, and the Android version can optionally function as an SMS app.
Signal uses standard cellular telephone numbers as identifiers. The number doesn’t have to be the same as the one on the device’s SIM card; it can also be a VoIP number or a landline, as long as the user can receive the verification code and have a separate device to set up the software. Although some have criticised this requirement, you can rest assured that your communications will be 100% private, as Signal uses end-to-end encryption to secure all messages sent to other Signal users.
All Signal software is free and open-source, and you needn’t worry about data of any kind being sold: Signal is actually a non-profit, and as such, raised initial funding of $50 million.
Hooray for this alternative social media site! With Google’s YouTube censoring hundreds of videos a day for reasons beyond comprehension, AltCensored offers a place for those videos to go.
While BitChute is a YouTube alternative, AltCensored is pretty much a huge middle finger stuck up at YouTube. It features the content that YouTube has firmly decided the public shouldn’t know. The folks at AltCensored believe you should be able to make your own mind up about information regarding whether or not 5G is health-destroying; the lockdowns for Coronavirus are justified, or if vaccinations are safe or not, for example.
What if the great library of Alexandria were online?
That’s the background concept the makers of LBRY.tv had in mind when they created this platform. This is a free-speech space where you’ll find everything from videos and music to ebooks, and more.
This is one of the best alternative social media sites for content producers, because LBRY.tv is also a new protocol that allows anyone to build apps that interact with digital content on the LBRY network. Creators can upload their work to the LBRY network of hosts (like BitTorrent), set a price per stream or download (like iTunes), or give content away for free.
That’s important. While traditional sites such as YouTube, Instagram, and Spotify store your uploads on their servers and allow viewers to download them, there are some serious drawbacks. For example? Censorship, for one! Or even having your channel cancelled if it’s perceived as not being advertiser-friendly. LBRY aims to be an alternative to these sites, allowing publishers and their fans to interact directly without the risk of demonetisation or other meddling.
Did we miss any alternative social media sites you love? Tell us in the comments, below!
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73 thoughts on “Alternative Social Media Sites To Facebook & Others”
The list depends on the aims you want to follow. You just look for a better alternative like the more convenient functionality or more security, or less censorship. Alt-tech apps became quite popular as they provide anonymity and freedom of speech. One of the most complex representatives is Utopia p2p https://utopia-network.com/ as it includes all-in-one. I think that such applications will become more and more popular as people started to care about their privacy and security online.
It’s time to organize folks! The world has become a place hell bent on degrading humanity with endless wars, useless vaccinations to enrich big pharma and spewing misinformation about impending doom! Law enforcement have been given Carte Blanche by the corporations to enforce the police state agenda! Arm yourself now!
Tried Hublife and I am just getting one problem after another in trying to get my account working. In the end, they ask for a Human Verification/Please enter a valid captcha and there is not captcha to copy.
Almost 2021, try this private social media aim to be your last social media. It called Seahart.
In Seahart, you can update status tens of time a day with no worry of spamming your friend timeline, because we just reinvent the social media timeline UI design. Give a look, happy sharing! ?
You missed a new dynamic conservative, unbiased, member supported social media community Freedoms Square:
• That is focused on user engagement with open dialog.
• Where free speech is not only allowed but encouraged without censored ideology, ideas, or political party.
• Where you own your content and your privacy is protected.
• Where your personal data will not be sold.
• You choose who will see your content: public, or selective friends, relatives, memberships or just yourself. When we say your content is yours; it’s yours. You can delete your profile, content or both at anytime and it is gone for good.
• Where the community decides what is not acceptable, not some bias group or corporation.
Current features include Facebook style:
• messenger with text or video
• public and private discussions
• photo and video albums
• market place
• #channels, and much more to come.
In development are features similar to Instagram, Yourtube and other will be added by community demand. It’s time to #browseaway from big corporate social media that are just using you as a product to sell; to a dynamic growing self-supporting community.
Thanks for the info!
You forgot Parler.com
Try widthness.com Business and Technology Social Media
Nice addition, thanks john!
Most of these sites are geared for alt-right folks who think media is skewed to the left. Which Facebook clearly is not… Maybe do some objective reporting and provide us with alternatives that are not politically aligned at all?
Sure, what would you recommend? I personally would not call most of these sites ‘alt right’. Corbett, for example, purports to be anti-all political parties and spectrums.
You probably don’t know about gouncensored.com .
Pretty much like Facebook, no ads, very intuitive interface. Try it!
Will do, thanks!
ComsChatter at coms.global does not manage users’ posts in any way – instead, users are encouraged to “Block” the posters of content they don’t like.
Are there ANY that are completely 100% free speech? I mean that don’t remove or censor speech of any kind, including “hate speech”?. The problem with saying things like ” we only prohibit hate speech, or someone promoting violence”, is that everyone’s definition of what constitutes those criterion can differ widely. I would prefer to have completely unedited and uncensored free speech. I can edit for myself thank you and do not fear anyone’s speech or opinion, even if and when it is repugnant or threatening to me.
Sticks & stones…words do not frighten me.
“Though I may not agree with what you say, I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
Good point! Can anyone here answer?
close …I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.
Evelyn Beatrice Hall
Would love to see infoStraight.com to be on this list. Guys there are working hard to make it a great platform for sharing quality content with no ads and no profile tracking (unlike how facebook behaves). They are currently feature lots of Coronavirus related topics on how to stay sane and what to do with kids. Worth checking out.
Thanks for the info Anna!
Not listed :
Crypto orientated social network.
Blockchain certification for all features
Peer to peer private message
Not selling your data
I’ll see you there 😉
I like Politichatter, it’s a great site as well. MeWe is okay, haven’t heard of some of the others but I have heard of and belong to Minds but it’s getting bad with regs and “strikes” for content in my opinion so I use it very little and their blockchain BS is confusing.
You forgot about http://Sharfly.com truly free speech, they don’t change real money for advertisement space and it feels more like Facebook they any other site
Interesting one! Thanks!
Add civ.works as an ad-free social network built for civic action (but works great for cat videos and pics of your lunch, too).
Thanks for the info! The comments do have loads of great suggestions
I recommend Moptu and MeWe. Both practice the 1st Amendment, and there is no censorship, no weeding out of undesirable postings, etc.
Katherine, I just saw this. I am the co-founder of Moptu. Thank you so much for mentioning us. I would love to hear more about how you found us. Please email me: email@example.com!
Another one you don’t have on your list is http://www.BareIt.us. The purpose and mission of Bare It is to meet the demands of thousands of people who have been banned and blocked from posting on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Youtube.
Help support this platform by signing up.
Great! The more we know about, the better!
Social networks have shifted focus from satisfying users to satisfying their own financial interests mostly at the expense of users privacy, security and satisfaction.
https://ayocer.com is a new social network that aims to correct the misdeeds of the old networks.
With Ayocer you get the same features you get on all existing social networks plus:
1) Every user has wallet on the site that enables them to receive money in the form of gifts from the people who love their posts (rather than the conventional Likes).
2) Integrated with Twitter and Pinterest so when people follow you on the site they also automatically follow you on Twitter and Pinterest.
3) You can write and publish full blog posts on the site.
4) You can also make money up to 70% from the people you reffered to the site (The site automatically build your referral by tracking people who have viewed your profile, read your post, or viewed you photos or videos without been logged in so when they sign up they are registered under you – of course you can still promote the site yourself to grow your referral much more faster but it’s completely optional).
DISCLOSURE: I’m the founder/ceo of ayocer and I’ll be happy to personally provide you with the details about the platform if you need. You can write me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Also, maybe you can add secure internet browsers that also don’t sell your info. I’m using Duck Duck Go! I love it! You can fireproof sites that you trust. They will also block Google & other browsers from interfering in your search. I’ve heard of other ones, but can’t remember ? Oh, and maybe you can add Rumble to your list. It replaces YouTube. Dan Bongino owns it ? They pay you to do something with the videos, but I haven’t figured it out yet lol ? A lot of the big dogs are using Rumble, like Dan Bongino himself, Diamond & Silk, & the HodgeTwins ?
Great article! Very well balanced and researched. I know I’m about 6 months late but GAB is making headlines. Everyone banned from Twitter and FB have headed over there. Gotta watch out for a few crazies though 😉
Sorry, I forgot about Telegram, Parler and if you’re really hardcore 4chan (not for the easily offended).
Just added Telegram. It’s great! Thanks!
Got a link to that?
Ty for your time and effort to effort to comply this information..I was on FB..until I was hacked..however they closed my account and asked ME for proof ..you can not talk to this company in person only thru messages and they asked my to give them a photo ID ..with my name ..date of birth..so on from a driver’s license..passport so on..all things you just don’t give out..told me in a form this would be held ..then deleted in 30 days..I refused to share that to get my acct. Reopened ..so I have been removed and locked out of FB. Although I had been hacked liked 5 other times and never asked this before ..they seemly fixed the problems..however I will be honest I did ask them ..if they were the hackers..we were a month from the election and I’m a straight conservative..A 100% trump voter ..i believe FB is closing off conservative acct.s as i saw and spoke to others having same issues..THEY ARE LOOKING TO CORNER THE COMMUNICATION AND DOING IT. I was sad to see Google + dissolved last month empowering FB more..we need social medias to be uncensored..like it pr not ..that is our rights to our true freedoms..I hope FB is seriously challenged by other medias to balance their censorship.
There are other options besides these. There’s also http://www.bareit.us.
Thanks for the info! Always good to know about more of these sites
Cam you please add Fleeped to that list please ?
It’s cl actually best FB Alternative to date.
All the functions you love on FB are there plus all the functions FB lacks in is there like sending gifts, switching between day and night mode, like comments or dislike ( currently complimenting this not live just yet ) fully customize your profile, Anti adult content if any nude or sexual image is posted it automatically gets removed. Best of all no advertising and you can directly speak with admin and make request for something to be added to make your socializing easy.
Please sign up and take a look around and he would appreciate if you could write article about it and as mentioned he will give you free live time VIP in return.
Thank you Jane
Interesting, but how private is this site?
What would be the closest alternative to Instagram? The look and capabilities? Any information on growth of these platforms? Thanks for a great article!
Veryyy interesting question!! Anyone with answers? For me, it could be Tumblr, no?
I am looking for honest comment ( A French philosopher said I don’t like what you say but I will defend you with my life to say it 250 years when freedom of speech goes so does society love ? Australia ??
You left out Buddylist. It is the oldest alternative and still working to this day.
Good to know, thanks for the info!
After FB’s repeated scandals, I’m shocked folks continue to trust and use the site.
That’s my reason for being here today. I had three posts censored since the Capitol break in on FB. I don’t make posts for anyone to censor; I keep my friends under 100 and friends who have similar thoughts and interests. I won’t participate in any social media that is going to censor me…the first step to socialistic ideas; I quit Twitter, and Instagram and FB. I have a phone if all else fails to talk person to person
I’m loving Gab these days!
It is always good to know that there are facebook or instagram alternatives out there!
More info om MeWe https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/mewe-ceo-tells-facebook-your-evil-business-model-wont-survive-300687864.html
Hi, I was going to use MeWe but I saw it’s run by a guy I am guessing is Jewish – considering that the NWO is run by Zionist Jews are you concerned that this is still not a safe platform? Look at where Zuckerberg has got us. I had heard of one started by a Russian guy but for the life of me I can’t now find it…. would you know what that one is?
You are unbelievable! You don’t even know this person, never bothered to research the site or him and are passing judgment, and putting that judgment into the cybersphere. I don’t know what the NWO is but will look it up but, again spreading hate. I will CLEARLY state here that I am an independent and vote for those who will do the best for humanity at large regardless of where they are at. Please, for humanities sake, look within and try to find a way to help us ALL instead of tearing some down. Ken
Obviously you are anti Semitic Kate, horrible
Who are you? That is the real concern.
Being wary of Zionists is not anti-Semitic by any stretch of the imagination.
Minds, mewe, freedomvine, codias, canund, oneway, vk, hub.life, etc.
Got a favourite in that list? 🙂
I ask you for a recomandation if I want to leave Facebook. I remember there was something social media with the first letter “V”. It wasn’t mentioned jere. Thank you.
That must have been Vero? https://www.vero.co/
How about putting in a good word for Minds dot com ?? Thank you!
Sure, why not? 🙂
The title of this article alone sold me! Can’t wait to try some of these recommendations. Thanks!
Thanks for sharing! I recently updated an article I wrote about the same topic – 5+ Ways to Hack Online Networking and the Places to do it! and am happy to learn about a few you mention. I also listed Brandergy, Alignable, BlogHer and ThirdAge to name a few – I will update my listing to include some of yours and appreciate the list yo compiled, especially what each network does and how to find them. Great job!
Thanks for your comments, Heidi!
Most of these are for cell phone use only. BAD. we need BOTH…desktop and phone apps. andd..you dont specify which are free and not free. for video….brighteon.com, banned.video.com. Also I see many media sites missed here. GAB, Parler, Codias, Spreely (phone app only)…….
That’s actually a really good point!! We all need to wean ourselves off our phones if we value our privacy, especially now that those devices are being tracked. And thanks for sharing the other sites.
I just change my cell browser to desktop view to use these sites.
My phone just doesn’t have the capacity to download them.
Yeah you forgot about MeWe.
These sites don’t allow sign up unless you have a mobil. That should tell you a LOT.
No, that’s not true. I know for sure Gab and MeWe can be signed up for on a laptop