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Expand chart

Over the past six months, apps catered to conservatives have hit new milestones, although they are starting to lose some of the traction they gained in the month following the aftermath of the Capitol siege.

Why it matters: Conservatives have long created their own media channels via print, radio and television to combat the perceived left-wing bias of mainstream outlets. The creation of new social media networks, streaming sites and digital media apps is the next iteration of that decades-long trend.

Driving the news: MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell told Business Insider last week that he's planning to create a new social media site called Vocl. Lindell, who has been banned from Twitter, says the app will be a cross between Twitter and YouTube.

  • In the past year, several social networks have gained popularity among conservatives, including Rumble, a YouTube alternative; Parler, a Twitter alternative; MeWe, a Facebook alternative, and CloutHub, which is sort of like a Reddit alternative.
  • Gab, the social network commonly used by conservatives that bills itself as a free speech platform, said recently that it's working on its own version of Clubhouse, the audio-first social app.
  • The Daily Wire is launching a subscription entertainment streaming service, akin to Netflix, that caters to conservatives. BlazeTV's subscription service also focuses on streaming, but focuses more on commentary than entertainment.

Be smart: Many of these apps, like MeWe, CloutHub and to an extent Parler, weren't originally created specifically for conservatives, but were embraced by them as they fled what they describe as censorship on mainstream networks like Twitter and Facebook.

  • Some of the apps, like Newsmax and OANN, exist mainly as cable properties, so app downloads only represent a partial view of their popularity.

Go deeper

Home confinees face imminent return to prison

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Thousands of prisoners who've been in home confinement for as long as a year because of the pandemic face returning to prison when it's over — unless President Biden rescinds a last-minute Trump Justice Department memo.

Why it matters: Most prisoners were told they would not have to come back as they were released early with ankle bracelets. Now, their lives are on hold while they wait to see whether or when they may be forced back behind bars. Advocates say about 4,500 people are affected.

The "essential" committee that still doesn't exist

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Getty Images

Nearly five months after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) announced the creation of the bipartisan Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Fairness in Growth, it's not been formed much less met.

Why it matters: Select committees are designed to address urgent matters, but the 117th Congress is now nearly one-quarter complete without this panel assembling. When she announced this committee, Pelosi described it as an "essential force" to "combat the crisis of income and wealth disparity in America."

Biden's ethics end-around for labor

President Biden surveys a water treatment plant during a visit to New Orleans today. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

The Biden administration is excusing top officials from ethics rules that would otherwise restrict their work with large labor unions that previously employed them, federal records show.

Why it matters: Labor's sizable personnel presence in the administration is driving policy, and the president's appointment of top union officials to senior posts gives those unions powerful voices in the federal bureaucracy — even at the cost of strictly adhering to his own stringent ethics standards.