Apple’s app store on Saturday banned Parler, the social messaging program popular with rightwing conservatives, and Amazon Web Services said it would kick Parler off its servers at the end of Sunday night.
“Parler has not taken adequate measures to address the proliferation of these threats to people’s safety,” Apple said in a statement reported by the Associated Press and other outlets. Apple said it was removing the app “until they resolve these issues.”
Parler CEO John Matze complained on his site of being scapegoated. “Standards not applied to Twitter, Facebook or even Apple themselves, apply to Parler.” He said he “won’t cave to politically motivated companies and those authoritarians who hate free speech.”
Apple’s move followed the same one by Google, which on Friday banned Parler for allowing postings that seek “to incite ongoing violence in the U.S.” Apple had initially given Parler 24 hours to address complaints it was being used to “plan and facilitate yet further illegal and dangerous activities.”
Losing access to the app stores of Google and Apple — whose operating systems power hundreds of millions of smartphones — severely limits Parler’s reach, though it will continue to be accessible via web browser. There are also other ways to download Android apps.
But Parler’s future as a whole is in question because of the decision made by Amazon Web Services, which hosts the app’s servers.
BuzzFeed News first reported Amazon’s decision, posting an email sent from Amazon Web Services to Parler’s chief policy officer Amy Peikoff.
“Recently, we’ve seen a steady increase in this violent content on your website, all of which violates our terms,” the email said. “It’s clear that Parler does not have an effective process to comply with the AWS terms of service.”
The email also declared that Parler “poses a very real risk to public safety.”
Amazon’s ban is scheduled to go into effect at 2:59 a.m. Eastern Time Monday morning, which is just before midnight Pacific Time.
After BuzzFeed’s story was first published, Parler’s CEO John Matze wrote on the app that it “will be unavailable on the internet for up to a week as we rebuild from scratch.”
All of these moves come after Twitter permanently suspended President Trump’s personal account on Friday night, and deleted a series of tweets Trump and his staff attempted to post to other accounts. Twitch and Snapchat have also disabled Trump’s accounts.
Facebook and Instagram (which is owned by Facebook) have banned Trump from posting at least until President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on Jan. 20.