Just hours after Twitter carried out a strike on the free speech by suspending United States President Donald Trump from its platform, other big-tech companies have also decided to act on smaller tech firms such as social network app ‘Parler’ by suspending it from the Play Store over its alleged ‘failure’ to remove “egregious content”.
According to reports, Parler has been suspended for hosting user-generated content that Google and Apple have deemed to be in violation of their respective platform’s rules. Citing posts inciting violence and demanding content moderation from the app, Google has removed the Parler from its Play Store.
The decision of Google to suspend ‘Parler’ from its platform comes amidst the reports that Donald Trump had joined the platform leading to its removal from the Play Store. This arbitrary decision comes after micro-blogging site Twitter banned United States Donald Trump from its platform claiming that he incited violence.
For uninitiated, launched in 2018, Parler is a social media platform network that is popular among the right-wing in the United States, who were victims of arbitrary suspension by the big-techs on its social networking platforms. Millions of people have joined Parler, which is uncensored and has attracted free speech warriors after mainstream social media sites like Twitter and Facebook decided to clamp down on users.
Not just Google, even Apple has warned Parler of suspension
Following Google’s action against free speech, Apple Inc too joined in on Friday to give 24 hours time to Parler to submit a detailed moderation plan and demanding them to act against participants, who allegedly used the service to coordinate protests of the US Capitol building.
In a letter from Apple’s App Store review team to Parler seen by Reuters, Apple cited participants of the mob storming the US Capitol building on Wednesday. “Content that threatens the well-being of others or is intended to incite violence or other lawless acts has never been acceptable on the App Store,” Apple said in the letter.
Giving 24 hours to Parler, Apple demanded them to “remove all objectionable content from your app … as well as any content referring to harm to people or attacks on government facilities now or at any future date”.
We won’t cave to politically motivated companies, Parler CEO
Responding to the ban, Parler Chief Executive John Matze said in a post on Friday that Apple was applying standards to Parler that it did not apply to itself. The app’s chief executive said, “We won’t cave to politically motivated companies and those authoritarians who hate free speech!”
“Apparently they believe Parler is responsible for ALL user-generated content on Parler,” Matze said. “Therefor (sic) by the same logic, Apple must be responsible for ALL actions taken by their phones. Every car bomb, every illegal cell phone conversation, every illegal crime committed on an iPhone, Apple must also be responsible for,” he wrote.
The CEO also highlighted the bias of big-tech saying, “Standards not applied to Twitter, Facebook or even Apple themselves, apply to Parler”.
Twitter bans US President Donald Trump
In a major blow to free speech, Twitter on Friday permanently banned the personal account of Donald Trump (@realdonaldtrump). The arbitrary action by Twitter to ban a sitting President and big-tech companies playing a direct role in country’s politics has now caused a massive shock to the citizens worldwide, invoking fear about big-tech’s intent to censure contrary viewpoints.
In a statement, Twitter said, “After a close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them — specifically how they are being received and interpreted on and off Twitter — we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence.”
Following the permanent suspension, the POTUS issued a scathing response accusing Twitter of conspiring with his political enemies “to silence” him. Declaring war on big-techs, President Trump issued a statement over the shocking action of Twitter to ban free speech saying that micro-blogging site is colluding with Democrats and radical left elements to silence him and the 75 million people who voted for him.
The President of the United States, end his statement to his followers said, “STAY TUNED!”.