Following the Jan. 6 attacks on the U.S. Capitol, social media platforms Facebook (FB  ) and Twitter (TWTR  ), as well as Youtube (GOOGL  ), banned then-President Donald Trump amidst claims that the MAGA leader had incited the insurrection. Along with Trump went much of the far-right, and now these groups are struggling to gain another foothold online.

In the lead-up to the 2020 election, far-right conspiracy theories and calls for violence were spread far and wide on major social media platforms. QAnon, in particular, had long held sway online, with adherents holding the false belief that Trump won the 2020 election and that he would remain in office to expose the fictitious satanic pedophile ring supposedly running the government and Hollywood.

However, once it became clear Trump's victory wasn't coming, Q fell silent, and Trump's ban followed close behind. In the vacuum left by these major figures, followers who may have been banned as well scattered across the dark corners of the internet, potentially picking up even more extreme beliefs.

"Deplatforming...produced this great scattering where groups that were banned or groups that believed their bans were imminent or forthcoming in this giant game of musical chairs, hopping from platform to platform," domestic extremism expert Jared Holt of the Atlantic Council's Digital Forensic Research Lab told NPR.

Encrypted messaging app Telegram has been one popular venue, along with streaming sites DLive and Rumble, and social platforms like Parler, Gab, and Gettr. So far, no one site has emerged as the new hub for far-right thought, partially because popular personalities like MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell and now Trump himself are planning on making their own social media platforms instead.

"They canceled my Twitter, they canceled YouTube, they canceled Vimeo. I said, we have to come up with something to get our voices back," Lindell said at his platform's May launch.

Trump's social platform hasn't been launched yet, and the company is currently under investigation by U.S. regulators.

While experts say it's a good thing that bad actors like those who stoked the Stop the Steal campaign are having their reach suppressed, followers of these ideologies are now focused in echo chambers on alternative platforms. Still, potential bad actors on these sites are going to have a much harder time building a following online, and they're adapting to this new landscape.

Rather than focusing on big online movements, far-right groups are now working on the local level, staging protests at city council and school board meetings over vaccines, masks, and how kids are taught about race in school. These efforts might not catch as much media coverage, but extremist experts say that doesn't mean these groups have become less of a threat.

"You have to go almost to the county level to understand what's happening, and how what happens online is related to what's happening offline," researcher Candace Rondeaux of the think tank New America told NPR.

This more dispersed movement may actually be harder to combat than its rabid insurrectionist predecessor thanks to the difficulty in pinning down exactly where these efforts are taking place and who is carrying them out.