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What is Parler, the pro-Trump social network banned by Apple, Google and Amazon?

The horizon darkens for the social network Parler, a haven for American conservatives disappointed with Twitter’s moderation policy towards Donald Trump. The service is no longer accessible on Monday, January 11 after Amazon’s decision to cut off the platform’s access to its servers due to its inability to moderate messages that incite violence. Apple and Google had already banned the social network from their app stores this weekend for the same reasons.

Just a few weeks ago, Parler was a social network with a confidential audience, known only to a few insiders in the ultra-conservative fringe, even the extreme right, whose number did not exceed one million users. . His credo: to offer dissatisfied people traditional social networks a space for discussion where all ideas can be expressed with almost total freedom of expression.

In fact, the service has emerged as a “safe space” for conservatives. When registering, the social network offers its new users a list of accounts to follow to personalize their experience: exclusively spokespersons for the extreme right, conspiracy or libertarian movements, alt-right personalities. United States, but also patriotic accounts or supporters of Donald Trump.

Screenshot of the Talking social network
Screenshot of the Talking social network
Credit: RTL

The measures taken by Twitter against Donald Trump in recent months, which reached a climax in recent days with the decision to permanently delete the account of the former president of the United States, have boosted the popularity of the site, which had briefly become Most downloaded free app on iPhone in June In the U.S.

Messages supporting Wednesday’s attack on the Capitol in Washington and calls for more protests have multiplied in recent days, prompting Google, Apple and Amazon to take sanctions.

Conservative American figures and Marion Maréchal Le Pen

Based in Henderson, Nevada, Parler was founded in 2018 by John Matze, a computer engineer, and Rebekah Mercer, a major donor to the Republican Party. The platform primarily hosted ultra-conservative and far-right figures at first, before opening to the Republican vote more traditional, like Senators Ted Cruz and Rand Paul, who gave him a more respectable image.

For example, we find the Fox News presenter Sean Hannity (7.6 million subscribers), his colleague Tucker Carlson (4.5 million), but also American politicians such as the parliamentarian Devin Nunes or the governor of South Dakota, Kristi Noem. In France, the former member of the National Front Marion Maréchal Le Pen he’s been a regular contributor to the site since this summer, along with some banned identities on Twitter.

After its withdrawal from the Apple and Google platforms, Parler’s CEO indicated this Saturday in the US press that the service would not be accessible online for a week, time to rebuild it from scratch. On Sunday night, after Amazon defected, he admitted that finding a new host may take longer and that his lawyers had also left the service.

Donald Trump did not wait for these events to express his desire to create his own platform in the near future. Unless you invest in the ultra-conservative Gab network, plagued with record attendance in recent days despite its absence from general public stores.

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