Apple to bring ‘Parler’ back to its App Store, as favoured by US conservatives
Apple Inc will bring back the social media app ‘Parler’ back to its App Store after the tech giant pulled it following the deadly attack on US Capitol, on January 6.
Apple is planning to bring back the social media app ‘Parler’ back to its app store. The Parler app has been favoured by US conservatives and was pulled down from the store in January after the deadly Jan 6 US Capitol riot.
According to a letter sent to two Republican Lawmakers, the app had proposed updates and a content moderation policy that would lead to its return on the App Store. Major tech platforms had cut ties with Parler after the supporters of former Republican President Donald Trump instigated an attack at the US Capitol that left five people dead. The platforms blamed the app, which was backed by Republican Rebekah Mercer, for failing to guard violent content on its app.
It is still not clear what changes the app ‘Parler’ has made to the app or its content. The app has styled itself as an alternative for those seeking free-speech platforms, other than Facebook or Twitter.
Parler stopped all communications for a month after Amazon had suspended its web hosting services, stating that the app had “failed to moderate violent content”. Both, Apple and Alphabet Inc’s Google removed it from their app stores. Parler came back online with the help of cloud infrastructure SkySilk, a Los Angeles based private firm. A lot happened in a matter of months.
Parler had sued Amazon, accusing it of destroying its business, its CEO John Matze, was fired by the board. Meanwhile, Apple’s letter stated that the updated app would be available as soon as Parler releases it. Although, both Parler and Apple declined to comment.
The letter was addressed to two Republican lawmakers, Senator Mike Lee and Representative Ken Buck. The two had questioned big tech CEOs last month about their ploys over the Parler app. Apple stated that it had rejected about 30,000 apps from the App Store in 2020 on the grounds of “problematic user-generated content”. It said that it had made an autonomous decision to remove Parler for not acceding with its guidelines, and did not coordinate or discuss with either Amazon or Google.
Meanwhile, Parler has been available for Android even though it is not currently distributed through Google Play. A Google spokesperson said, “Parler has been available for android because of the openness of the platform even though it isn’t currently distributed through Google Play Store.”
He further added that the app was very much welcome in the Play Store if it presents an app that complies with its policies. But Parler has still not submitted an updated version of its app on the Play Store till now. Moreover, Amazon has refused to respond on the matter and has declined the request for comment.