Why doesn’t Jordan Peterson have his own server?

Reader William of Ockham makes this remark in correspondence he probably thought was private:

You do know they are going to get [Jordan] Peterson, right? There will be a moment where they provoke him to give an awful soundbite or find a past failure that is enough to discredit him. He hints at this when people ask what keeps him up at night.

I agree that it’s only a matter of time before Peterson is hounded off YouTube, and probably Twitter and other social media platforms too. The question I have is why the hell is he still on there.

I’m reasonably certain oil companies, for example, own the servers they host their websites on. If not, they’ll certainly have an agreement with a hosting company that won’t be torn up in the event some green lunatics decide to spam them with ten thousand emails demanding they cease to host the oil major’s site. An oil company’s IT infrastructure is probably expensive to maintain, but would be less for smaller companies. At some point, it would make sense to just outsource the lot rather than own the equipment. But I assume owning your own server and maintenance/protection systems is possible even for individuals.

So why doesn’t somebody like Peterson, who has 850k subscribers to his YouTube channel and 500k followers on Twitter, not set up a small company and buy the necessary IT equipment so he no longer stands the risk of being kicked off the internet? Okay, it might be possible for SJWs to hound the telecoms company or even the landlord of the premises into dropping Peterson, but that will only work in a few countries. If it comes down to it, why could Peterson not set up a small company in Russia and host his server from there? The Russians wouldn’t care what he’s saying, provided he sticks to attacking deranged feminists in the west and not Vladimir Putin.

It might be Peterson doesn’t have the money, but he’s the No.1 seller on Amazon so he can’t be flat broke. How much would it cost to be independent? $10k? More? He could sell his books from his site, post his videos, and do whatever he wants and not have to lie awake at night waiting for the day when YouTube suddenly block his account. It doesn’t make sense for everyone to take such precautions of course, but for someone like Peterson? It seems sensible, yet he doesn’t do it. Anyone know why?

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30 thoughts on “Why doesn’t Jordan Peterson have his own server?

  1. Three reasons:

    1/ it’s harder technically to secure your own platform than to use someone else’s. Google spend billions on staying ahead of threats.
    2/ he’ll always have a footprint on YouTube and the rest- even if only through user contributed stuff. Why would he want to wall off part of his output?
    3/ By looking like he’s not trying to build a media empire he retains some of his ‘everyman’ approach to the subject. Peterson works well when he talks because he appears just to be passing comment as a clever layman/outside the tent looking in/not having a dog in the fight. His own platform would make him look like a shock jock.

  2. Why move from YouTube until you have to?
    It would be more dramatic for JP to be booted from YouTube and then having to start sharing videos directly from his personal website.
    Every day he’s still on YouTube is every day he’s finding a new audience, this would be harder if people had to go to his website directly.

  3. I am Canadian who is amazed that Peterson still employed at university of toronto, I thought for sure he would have been fired by now. I know he got tenure but I assumed there would be some clause about collegiality that admin could use to punish Peterson.

    Peterson definitely has money to pay for his own server, he has patreon account and he’s collected hundreds of thousands dollars.

  4. Isn’t the cost of streaming video very high? Doesn’t youtube lose money for google?

  5. Okay, I’m convinced as to why he sticks on YouTube for now. But if he’s losing sleep that he might have the plug pulled any minute, you’d have thought he’d have a Plan B in place all ready to go, wouldn’t you? I remember when Milo got booted off social media, he ended up in the wilderness.

  6. Vox Day insists that the non-left (aka anyone with a pulse above the neck and a brain) has to build its own platforms. Those relying on lefty bitterness-fuelled social media and streaming platforms to spread even a rational message must eventually end up greatly saddened. Twitter, for example, likes to make war on its non-left users (though I have no idea currently about fecesbook as I abandoned it ages ago) so while it is useful for a while eventually one has to get out of town.

    Eventually then Peterson will depart from those platforms but I can’t blame him for using the zones of frothing idiots for as long as possible.

  7. Vox Day insists that the non-left (aka anyone with a pulse above the neck and a brain) has to build its own platforms.

    He’s absolutely right, but of course it’s easier said than done. (Vox himself ended up getting in a tiff with the people behind Gab I recall.)

    Think about it like this: in order for the platform to work it needs to make money – in order to make money it needs to have a broad appeal – in order to have a broad appeal it must look fun – politics isn’t fun – therefore it must appear to the average person to be totally non-political.

    But the whole reason for creating the new platform is political. And in order for it to get off the ground, it needs some early adopters, who will most likely be the people who dislike the pre-existing platforms for political reasons.

    So it has to be political, but that probably hobbles it long-term. Quite difficult to square that circle, I’d imagine, at least until the average person becomes aware of the scale of leftist subversion.

  8. Think about it like this: in order for the platform to work it needs to make money – in order to make money it needs to have a broad appeal – in order to have a broad appeal it must look fun – politics isn’t fun – therefore it must appear to the average person to be totally non-political.

    Okay, but I remember the early days of blogging when Instapundit and LGF were the big players and went on to make money for their owners. Neither needed 3rd party platforms, but at some point everyone decided to switch to 3rd party platforms whose owners can boot you for no reason. How anyone whose entire raison d’etre was to attack the establishment thought this was a good idea I don’t know.

  9. He fights the fight and has already managed to get censored stuff back. The stink will be massive when they try to take him down. He won’t go easy.

    I have no doubt that in his camp some thought has been given to the matter of alternatives and any alternative would go viral immediately.

    I believe he is currently on sabbatical but there are people at the U. of T. that want him fired. The money he is taking in is precisely for research and a virtual university project he has in mind, not for a lime-green Lamborghini.

    Pat Condell has this problem but is also up on alternative sites like Bitchute or PewTube.

  10. He does have jordanbpeterson.com, so I guess he has that as a fallback. If youtube yanks his channel he could switch to hosting his own vids using Amazon S3 or similar. He also has over 850,000 subscribers who I assume would make a lot of noise if he got shut down.

  11. YouTube is not just a collection of servers; it is also a collection of users who go there by default to view stuff. Peterson could create his own server state for not that much money (though hiring a 24/7 SysAdmin may not be as cheap), but it is unlikely he would manage to create the user environment YouTube has. That is the problem with YouTube, Facebook, Google, etc; they are monopolies, not in hardware or even software, but in “eyeware”.

  12. they are monopolies, not in hardware or even software, but in “eyeware”.

    That’s not a real monopoly. A five second Google search (ha!) will instantly reveal over a dozen market competitors for video hosting, social networking, email, etc.

    As a software engineer, I’m acutely aware of the problems of tech people not grasping how little the average person really understands (or needs to understand) Internet technology. But when people cannot even be bothered to type “alternatives to Google” into Google, that’s not a problem of monopolies or ivory tower IT, that’s just people being pig-f*cking stupid.

  13. What John Square said above.

    Once you migrate off of the huge established channels, you are easily vulnerable to DDOS attacks, which the Googles and the Amazons of the world have invested hundreds of millions of dollars to prevent.

    There are services available that monitor your traffic and can help ameliorate such attacks. Those services have shown themselves to be all too willing to abandon non-progressive websites. Go look at the history of GAB.ai, and how they were dropped by several such services, each of which has its own Terms of Service that exclude sites that have “unacceptable” content.

    You also need a Domain Registrar signed up so that people can find your site on the internet without knowing the numerical IP address. GAB.ai also had several organizations drop them in response to pressure. That’s why GAB has an .ai address – they had to go to (I think) the country of Anguilla to find a company that would handle this for them.

    It would be like buying your own jet, but then realizing that no pilot will fly for you, no one will sell you fuel, and airports wouldn’t let you land.

    In short, were Peterson to set up his own server(s), you’d probably never be able to connect to it. He’d be a prime – and easy – target for the vandals.

  14. bobby b,

    Then how do commercial companies manage it? I mention oil companies, but there must be plenty of smaller outfits running websites which are ripe for SJW-targeting who manage to stay online and not be at the mercy of companies which cite “unacceptable content”. Now maybe it is prohibitively expensive to do this as an individual, but I wonder what the order of magnitude is.

  15. Given that The Pirate Bay is still around and accessible without any real effort after years of governments of all stripes trying to kill it off, I can’t see it being that difficult to keep a load of SJW types who merely strongly disapprove at bay?

    That said, I always assumed that blocking of “undesirable” content via pressure on ISPs was the real battle behind the net neutrality wars?

  16. There is a matter of smaller in money or smaller in profile. A company making a couple million a year would sail under the SJW radar unless something special got their attention. Jordan Peterson as an individual could be making a fraction of that but has a huge profile now.

    Once a company gets big enough, more often than not they go PC anyway. Any organisation not explicitly right-wing becoming left-wing over time.

  17. Commercial platform considerations aside, he is clearly very conscious that the root cause of the left achieving a “gotchya” moment that discredits him is in his use of language. If he’s sloppy they will use it against him.

    The Russell Brand interview is a good example; Brand was quick to talk over any points that didn’t fit his world view on Islam or the root of all evil being “cap-il-isam”. Brand isn’t smart enough though so JP got his points across well.

    Related; I see Laurie Penny has deployed her substantial intellectual abilities to writing a book review for Peterson; https://mobile.twitter.com/PennyRed/status/961804944436117504

  18. William of Ockham

    “The Russell Brand interview is a good example; Brand was quick to talk over any points that didn’t fit his world view on Islam or the root of all evil being “cap-il-isam”. Brand isn’t smart enough though so JP got his points across well.”

    I thought Brand was much better in that interview than I’ve seen before with him, usually he is nothing more than endless left wing memes spewing forth.

  19. “Then how do commercial companies manage it?”

    Mostly, they do their best to keep under the SJW radar, and apologize profusely and fire people willy-nilly when they don’t.

    Plus, the security and DNS vendors don’t have fanatic owners looking to wipe out commercial thought, or even commercial thought that has blundered into BadSpeak. But a Prof. Peterson is always going to have such folk gunning for him.

  20. @David Moore

    “I thought Brand was much better in that interview than I’ve seen before with him, usually he is nothing more than endless left wing memes spewing forth.”

    I suspect two things are going on here; he’s realised in advance that he doesn’t want to become a meme a la Cathy Newman and he’s reinventing his schtick somewhat in response to people rejecting his previous incarnation (being matey with Mo Ansar, for example).

    In other words, as David St. Hubbins so eloquently put it, “you are witnesses at a rebirth, Spinal Tap Mark 2. We hope you like our new direction”.

  21. How do you know that he doesn’t have a Plan B? Given that iif he did he would probably not publicly disclose it.

    Plus the notoriety of being banned and shut down just increases his selling price.

  22. Tp protect his freedom of speech Voltaire fled to Geneva. You recommend that Peterson flee – albeit electronically – to Russia. Funny old world.

  23. @Bill

    I don’t know if I am Arthur or Martha, left Brisbane three weeks ago for two nights in Singapore haven’t returned and am now kind of stuck in Accra. So no I doubt it plus that’s not the type of thing that I go to but I am sure the upper middle Bogans will be out in force.

  24. Bardon

    “I don’t know if I am Arthur or Martha”

    I never realised you were gender fluid.

  25. I assume there’s a plan B for when YouTube etc.decide he is PNG. Meanwhile he’s making $$$ from the ads shown by Youtube when people watch his videos.

    The big issue with hosting these days is DDoS attacks.\if he set up his own media servers the “progressives” would DDoS the $#!+ out of them and cause his hosting provider to be upset. Also it would be hard to monetize the videos outside of youtube so instea dof making money from the videos he’ dbe losing it – especially when he go tthe DDoS protection bill

  26. “I’ve heard it mentioned that he’s making high 5 figures a month from his Youtube channel.”

    In which case YouTube is making at least 5 figures hosting Peterson.

    Money also talks.

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