The Parler App is Back Online After A Month Away
The controversial social-media app Parler has come back online after more than a month without service after an armed mob stormed the Capitol building in January
The app is much like Twitter in its design, but was favoured amongst right-wing conservatives and Donald Trump supports following a number of individuals were banned from social media platforms due to offensive and discriminatory posts, as well as Donald Trump himself being removed from a host of social platforms. After an armed mob stormed the US Capitol building on the 6th of January, the app was removed from both Apple and Google app stores as well as Amazon's web hosting service over fears that the app was used to organise the 'event'.
After being unavailable for just over a month, the rebooted version of the controversial free-speech platform hopes be around for some time, but users from the initial version claimed that their posts had vanished. While the new version isn't available to new users yet, the app hopes to open up to new users in the coming week, but is prioritising previous users being able to access their existing accounts. The app isn't available to be downloaded from the Google app store, so if you haven't already got it downloaded, you will have to "sideload" the app, as for Apple, those attempting to reinstall or download it are told it is 'currently unavailable.
So the app is no longer working with big tech providers, but is rebooted and built from "sustainable and independent technology", during the downtime Parler also fired their very vocal cheif executive, John Matze, and appointed an interim boss, Mark Meckler. Meckler states "We will thrive as the premier social-media platform dedicated to free speech, privacy, and civil dialogue", also stating that the companies who ended connections with the app were "those who desire to silence tens of millions of Americans".
The platforms key selling point has been their lack of moderation and dictation of what is right and wrong, which is a decision taken to encourage free speech of its users, which was ultimately the reason that Google and Apple banned the app, where it failed to remove posts that incited violence and multiple posts of hate speech, Amazon later removed the app from its its web-hosting service days later for similar reasons. The app holds what it coins 'minimalist' community guidelines that are as follows;
"Be yourself; Discuss and defend your values, passions, accomplishments and ideas in an environment that lets you be you, free of agenda-driven “shadow-banning."
All parleyers are equal; Regardless of race, sex, age, sexual preference, religion, politics, or dietary choices —- well , except pineapple pizza -- every user is treated equally under Parler’s Community Guidelines.
Religious freedom; Adherents of all religions —- as well as non-adherents -— are welcome to converse civilly, to discuss solutions to pressing world problems, and hopefully come to understand we are all more similar than we are different.
Content curation exacerbates hate; Biased content curation policies enable rage mobs and bullies to influence Community Guidelines. Parler’s viewpoint-neutral policies foster a community of individuals who tolerate the expression of all non-violent ideas."
Trump had allegedly been offered a significant stake in the company if he joined, Buzzfeed News reported earlier this month, which is something rival politicians are now investigating, but the former president never joined Parler while in power and does not appear to have joined the relaunched version. Although Trump did mention that he thinks he'd be hurting Twitter "very badly" if he stopped using the platform and that he'd attempt to shut down the company if he found a legal way to do so.
Before the app was taken offline, hackers claim they were able to access an archive of posts and downloads - more than one million videos and images, including some from the 6 January riots. Carolyn Maloney, who chairs the House oversight committee, has reportedly asked the FBI to investigate the role of Parler in the violence at the Capitol.
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