Parler
(Photo : Photo by Hollie Adams/Getty Images) A general view of the Parler app displayed on an iPhone on January 9, 2021 in London, England.

Amazon and Apple announced they will suspend the free speech social media platform Parler from their App Store and web hosting service, stating that the platform has not taken adequate measures to stop the spread of posts that can incite violence.

The banning of the social networking service Parler follows the same move done by Alphabet Inc's Google.

Apple and Amazon bans Parler

Parler is favored numerous people who can't express their opinion on Twitter, a social media site that only allows 280 words and polices the contents on the site, according to ABC News.

Apple had given Parler 24 hours to submit a detailed moderation plan, this is following complaints that the platform is being used to plan and facilitate yet further illegal and dangerous activities.

Also Read: What is Parler? Social Media Users Leave Facebook and Twitter to Join New Platform

However, in a statement Apple said that Parler has not taken measures in order to address the proliferation of the threats to people's safety that Apple stated can be found in the site. It said it was removing the app until they can resolve their issues.

John Matze, the Parler CEO complained on his site of being scapegoated. He said that standards not applied to Twitter, Facebook or even Apple themselves apply to Parler. He said that he won't cave to politically motivated companies and those authoritarians who hate free speech.

Amazon's move effectively takes the site offline unless it can find a new company that can host its services. Amazon has suspended Parler from its Amazon Web Services AWS unit.

This ban is for violating terms of services as the site is said to have failed to effectively deal with an increase in violent content on Parler, according to BuzzFeed News.

AWS did not immediately respond to a request for a comment and they plan to suspend Parler's account effective from 11:59 pm on January 10, 2021.

Losing access to the app stores of Google and Apple, whose operating systems power millions of smartphones all over the world can severely limit Parler's reach, though it will continue to be accessible through web browsers.

MeWe is now a Parler alternative

After the banning of Parler, people are now turning to an alternative, a social medial platform called MeWe. However, unlike Parler, MeWe is designed to keep out lawbreakers, haters, bullies, harassment, violence inciters, and others. It is not  a website wherein everything is just allowed. Users need to comply with their strict Terms of Service which aims to provide the best social media experience to the users where they are safe and protected.

MeWe is currently experiencing a massive surge in new users as people look for new platofrms in order to avoid Twitter, Facebook and Instagram where most opinions are censored. It labels itself as the next generation social network. It also centers its sales pitch to new users around data privacy and providing an ad-free experience.

Although it is also dubbed as a free-speech platform, it is different from Parler. It believes that whatever is the opinion of the users may it be politics, lifestyle, race, religion, background, or sexual orientation are none of the company's business. They clarified that it is not the job of a social media company to censor those conversations, as long as the users stay within the boundaries of MeWe's TOS.

Owned by Sgrouples, which was actually the same name of the platform when it was first launched, it was founded by internet entrepreneur Mark Weinstein.

In an interview with Protocol about "How to Build a Better Facebook," Weinstein said: "I think sites where anything goes are terrible. At MeWe we have strict rules in our terms prohibiting content inciting violence, posting hate, bullying, breaking the law, etc. And we have a great Trust and Safety team. We have Report and Block on every post, every profile, every group and every page; and our Trust and Safety team investigates all reports. MeWe is for the good guys. But we're not going to censor a conversation by conservatives or progressives, or health advocates of one health remedy versus another, simply because their opinion might differ from mine. Why is that any of MeWe's business?"

Weinstein was in the social media industry pretty early on. In 1998, Weinstein created a very early social network type site called SuperGroups, which was eventually shut down by its investors in 2001. In 2011, Weinstein started a new online business venture, and it eventually resulted in the launch of MeWe.

Related Article: Parler Banned: Google Play Store Shuts Down Free Speech App, Will Apple Follow Suit?

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Written by Sieeka Khan

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