Parler, Social Media Site Sidelined After Jan. 6, Plans Return

Parler, the social media platform popular with right-wing audiences that was removed from app stores after hosting calls for violence around Jan. 6, 2021, will relaunch early next year, the company’s new owners announced on Monday.

“We’re committed to bringing Parler back online,” Ryan Rhodes, Parler’s new chief executive, said in a statement. The app had been shut down in April after it was purchased by Starboard, a digital media company.

Mr. Rhodes and Elise Pierotti, who was previously the company’s chief marketing officer purchased the company last week, Ms. Pierotti said.

Parler, which had billed itself as a platform for “uncancelable free speech,” used to draw millions of supporters of former President Donald J. Trump and was once the most downloaded app on Apple’s App Store. But tech companies pulled their support for the platform soon after the Jan. 6 attacks on the Capitol, saying that the company did not do enough to police posts that incited violence or crime.

Apple and Google banned the app from their app stores, and Amazon booted the company from its web-hosting service. Effectively banned from app stores on virtually all of the world’s smartphones, the platform then struggled to maintain its user base. It was later reinstated in both the Apple and Google app stores.

Now, the app is positioned to return as Mr. Trump seeks the presidency for a third time. The relaunch is scheduled for February.

Mr. Rhodes said that Parler’s new management would take measures to keep “harmful content like terrorism, child porn and trafficking off our platform.”

Mr. Rhodes added that the platform’s newest iteration would not aim to compete with Truth Social, the conservative social media company started by Mr. Trump. That site has dominated the conservative social media space in Parler’s absence, crowding out rival platforms like Gab, Gettr, MeWe and Minds.

Parler said in a statement that it would emphasize “a return to its roots as a robust marketplace of ideas.”

The embattled social media platform had made headlines last year when a deal for Kanye West, the rapper criticized over his antisemitic remarks, to buy it unraveled soon after it was announced.

On Monday, Ms. Pierotti listed a third partner, Jaco Booyens, as a co-owner of Parler’s newest iteration. After this article initially published, Ms. Pierotti said she misspoke and said that Mr. Booyens is “just on the team as the Chief Strategy Officer.”

Sheelagh McNeill contributed research.

Parler, the social media platform known for its popularity among right-wing audiences, will be relaunching early next year, according to its new owners. The app had previously been removed from app stores due to its hosting of calls for violence surrounding the January 6th Capitol attack. Parler was shut down in April after being purchased by digital media company Starboard. However, the company has now been purchased by Ryan Rhodes and Elise Pierotti, who plan to bring it back online. Parler used to attract millions of supporters of former President Donald J. Trump and was once the most downloaded app on Apple’s App Store. However, tech companies withdrew their support after the Capitol attacks, citing Parler’s failure to adequately moderate posts that incited violence. Apple, Google, and Amazon all banned the app from their platforms, severely impacting its user base. Parler is set to relaunch in February and its new management has promised to take measures to prevent harmful content from appearing on the platform. They also stated that they do not intend to compete with Truth Social, the conservative social media platform created by Donald Trump. Parler aims to return as a marketplace of ideas and emphasize free speech.

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