Apple and Google Ban Social Media Platform Parler From App Stores

Apple and Google Ban Social Media Platform Parler From App Stores

01/10/2021

One day after Google banned Parler — the “free speech” social media app favored by Trump supporters — from its app store, Apple has followed suit.

On Friday, Apple announced Parler had 24 hours to implement a “moderation improvement plan” or risk banishment, citing complaints that the app was used to plan and execute the domestic terror attack on the U.S. Capitol. By the next morning, it was the top trending app on the App Store, but Apple removed it later in the day.

“We have always supported diverse points of view being represented on the App Store, but there is no place on our platform for threats of violence and illegal activity,” Apple said in a statement explaining the decision. “Parler has not taken adequate measures to address the proliferation of these threats to people’s safety.”

Without a presence on either app store, Parler is limited in its ability to acquire new users, although people will still be able to access the platform through its website on their phone’s web browser.

Parler CEO John Matze told the New York Times on Saturday morning that he finds the move unfair because “Hang Mike Pence” trended on Twitter Wednesday as people discussed chants shouted by those who stormed the Capitol — though it was largely trending because people were reporting and discussing the chants.

“I have seen no evidence Apple is going after [Twitter],” Mr. Matze said. “This would appear to be an unfair double standard as every other social media site has the same issues, arguably on a worse scale.”

Several tech companies, including Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit, recently banned President Trump from their platforms for inciting the violence at the Capitol. While Trump does not have a personal Parler account, his campaign has a verified page, and all day Saturday, the campaign posted articles alleging Twitter and other tech companies are discriminating against the president.

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