Latest update

This is NOT an official Parler communication

Parler.com came back on Monday February 15. Many members used the web interface but others reported that the mobile apps worked too (if you already had installed them before Apple/Google stopped distributing). I logged in normally using a new browser (one I had never used before on parler -- FireFox) but could not do it from my usual browser.


Developments during Month 1 of the War

Amazon turned off Parler’s servers the night of Jan 10, disconnecting Parler.com from the internet, and with it the social media accounts of almost 20 million people. The following Tuesday Parler sued Amazon citing, among other things, that Parler should have been given 30 days notice. Parler asked the Court to intervene temporarily and then hear the facts of the case, but on Jan 21 the Judge ruled against the emergency injunction.


Parler.com came back on January 16, but only for purposes of displaying messages from the CEO and other influencers. As of January 17, the CEO was predicting that Parler would be functional again "by the end of the month." He was able to recover the company's data, after several days of Amazon's denial of access to Parler's own intellectual property.


The Jan 6 violence and lawbreaking was reportedly organized on Facebook (more evidence here), but Facebook continues without any interruption.


I estimate that Parler has 20 million members (no bots, with "almost a million new accounts created on that last day"), which Parler's CEO confirmed last week, as compared to less than 60 million US accounts on Twitter.


This outrageous situation is best handled by the market, without government interference. To the 20 million people temporarily disconnected, I say: do not be gullible enough to think that government bureaucrats or politicians represent your interests any better than the big tech employees. Many of them have built followings on incumbent social media and do not want to work to build that again. Any new regulations for social media will be written by allies of the incumbents.


Developments during Week 1 of the War

Earlier in the saga, Parler CEO reported (as early as Jan 10 on Fox Business) that attorneys, email, and other suppliers are refusing to supply his company. Although in the days following shut off he said that transferring the company's software and data could be done in about 12 hours, that Tuesday he wrote that "We will likely be down longer than expected" because of the time it takes to find vendors who are willing to supply the company. Parler investor Dan Bongino said in the days following shut off that "Parler will be back by the end of the week." The same day the CEO told Fox News that Parler.com will be running again in "a few days to a few weeks." January 15 Parler's Chief Policy Officer offered friendly words for Apple, which suggests that if peace breaks out then it may begin with Apple.


Jan 13 Parler CEO gave a video interview from which an out-of-context clause (Parler "may never return") has become the headline. As usual, you have to watch the interview yourself to understand what the CEO really said (see esp 0:50 mark and the 2:00 mark).


[I have no financial interest in Parler. As with millions of other Parler members, my interest is in free speech. See also Glenn Greenwald's longer exposition.]