Apple, Google, and Amazon all Drop Parler After it was Used to Coordinate Attack on U.S. Capitol

Apple, Google, and Amazon all Drop Parler After it was Used to Coordinate Attack on U.S. Capitol

By Yehudit Garmaise

     After Parler, a far-right alternative to Twitter, was used to coordinate the 2021 storming of the U.S. Capitol, Amazon, Google, and Apple all kicked the social media network off their hosting services.

    On Jan. 8, Apple informed Parler executives that its mobile app would be removed from the App Store within 24 hours if Parler did not improve its policy to moderate posts that called for violence. The next day, Apple removed the Parler app from it services, and the Google Play store also remove the app, as well. Today, Amazon announced that it would suspend Parler from its Amazon Web Services effective tomorrow.

   Parler’s users tend to be supporters of President Trump, conservatives, conspiracy theorists, and right-wing extremists, and posts on the service often contain far-right content, anti-Semitism, and conspiracy theories such as QAnon.

   Following Jan. 6’s violent mob at the U.S. Capitol, in the last few days, Parler has been overrun with messages that encourage “patriots” to again march on Washington. D.C., with weapons, on Jan. 19, the day before Biden’s inauguration.  

  Launched in 2018 as a “free-speech” alternative platform for right-wing users who objected to the moderation of content on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, before 2020 Parler had a relatively small user base: fewer than 1 million users. But when Parler’s membership in 2020 grew to four million active users and 10 million members, the sites unmoderated violent content grew as well, according to a member of Amazon’s Web Services (AWS) Trust and Safety team.

   In an e-mail obtained by BuzzFeed News, the AWS member told Parler’s Chief Policy Officer Amy Peikoff that Amazon is not convinced that Parler’s plan to use volunteers to moderate posts with violent content will be or is effective, consider the number of the calls for violence that regularly appear on Parler. 

      Without Amazon, Google, and Apple as its hosts, Parler will go offline on Sunday, unless it can find another host.


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