The extreme jihadist group Islamic State (IS) has been using social media, mostly Twitter, to spread its message to outside world, using multiple accounts of its members. Twitter has been coming down hard on these accounts and IS has sought a new platform – Diaspora.
Twitter’s clampdown reached its peak last week as international criticism of IS continues to grow. The militant group, which annexed several regions in Iraq, has now set up Diaspora accounts since August 14 to spread its propaganda.
Diaspora is a privacy-focused and decentralized social networking platform that was founded in New York through a crowdfunding campaign. While it certainly does not have the same clout as Facebook and Twitter, Diaspora users use their own servers or pods, as the platform calls them.
The Islamic State has set up on a US server, according to the BBC.
IS had near-perfected the skill of viral tweets to spread their message, even hijacking hashtags associated with the World Cup during the tournament that allowed them to reach a huge audience. Twitter’s clampdown on their accounts has now forced them seek social media alternatives and it remains unclear how it will affect their “promotion”. Given Diaspora’s functions, they may be harder to track down and ban from the site.
It has not only been Twitter that attempted to ban the militants though as many Internet services have been blocked and censored during this time.