Parler, the social media site that has gained traction among President Trump’s supporters as an alternative to Twitter, went offline on Monday after Amazon terminated its web hosting services. The move throws Parler’s future into doubt and comes after both Apple and Google banned the app from its app stores, with the two tech giants saying the app didn’t have strong enough moderation policies in place.
Before Amazon pulled its support, Parler CEO John Matze posted the site will “likely be down longer than expected.” Matze didn’t share an estimated timeline for when Parler expects to be back online.
“This is not due to software restrictions — we have our software and everyone’s data ready to go,” Matze said. “Rather it’s that Amazon’s, Google’s and Apple’s statements to the press about dropping our access has caused most of our other vendors to drop their support for us as well. And most people with enough servers to host us have shut their doors to us.”
Reps for Parler didn’t immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment on Monday morning.
The tech crackdown against Parler came after it was used by some people to encourage the attack on the U.S. Capitol last Wednesday. Amazon, in a letter sent to Parler Chief Policy Office Amy Peikoff, said the app “poses a very real risk to public safety” and that it “cannot provide services to a customer that is unable to effectively identify and remove content that encourages or incites violence against others.” Amazon’s reasoning echoed both Apple and Google’s rationale for pulling down Parler. Google said it requires “robust moderation for egregious content” to remain on the Play Store, while Apple said Parler’s moderation policies “have proved insufficient” and that it “continued to find direct threats of violence and calls to incite lawless action” on the app.
Matze, in a post on Saturday night, said the tech giants were working together to “try and ensure they don’t have competition.” He added Parler was the world’s “last hope for free speech and free information.”
It’s unclear how many users Parler had by the end of the weekend, but its popularity had been rising, with the app hitting the top of Apple’s App Store right before it was removed.