Parler Is Back Online, Sort of

By Rick Gonzales | 5 months ago

Parler

They’re back… well, sort of. Yes, Parler is slowly returning from banishment as CEO John Matze posted a message on the company’s website, promising a return to normalcy in the near future.

Under a banner that reads Technical Difficulties, Matze’s declaration says: “Now seems like the right time to remind you all — both lovers and haters — why we started this platform. We believe privacy is paramount and free speech essential, especially on social media. Our aim has always been to provide a nonpartisan public square where individuals can enjoy and exercise their rights to both. We will resolve any challenge before us and plan to welcome all of you back soon. We will not let civil discourse perish!”

Underneath this announcement comes a post from Matze himself, “Our return is inevitable due to hard work, and persistence against all odds. Despite the threats and harassment not one Parler employee has quit. We are becoming closer and stronger as a team.”

Those postings are only two of a mere few that the Parler website has working for it right now. Another, coming from heavy investor Dan Bongino, who is a former New York Police Department police officer as well as a former Secret Service agent and who firmly supports President Donald Trump, reads: “We will NEVER stop fighting. NEVER. This fight is bigger than me, and it’s bigger than Parler. If they’re allowed to silence us, they can silence anyone. It stops now. Please stand with us in this fight for liberty, truth and freedom.”

Parler is a social media site, much in the vein of Twitter and Facebook, and is described by many as an alternative to those social media giants. Many of their users have been banned from the mainstream social media networks (welcome to Parler, President Trump) or those who are in direct opposition to the social media moderation policies. But Parler found themselves in hot water based on claims that their website was used in helping plan and incite the January 6th Capitol riot. Apple and Google stopped the Parler app from being available on their sites and Amazon Web Services then cut off their web hosting for Parler, effectively cutting off the over 15 million total users.

The website had been growing immensely in popularity by right-wing users and those who feel Facebook and Twitter have overstepped in how they are now censoring many on their websites. It didn’t help Twitter and Facebook when they shut down President Trump’s ability to post on his respective accounts. When the President moved over to Parler, he took many with him.

Contrary to popular belief, Parler does have its own set of rules. In many ways, they mirror both Twitter and Facebook. In some ways, they are better. Launched back in 2018, it was a way to combat what the site’s creators said was “a lack of transparency in big tech, ideological suppression and privacy abuse.” The name itself is French and pronounced PAR-lay, meaning “to talk” though many have been pronouncing it as “parlor”, which is now how most people say it.

Even though the site went dark, Matze was able to retrieve Parler’s data from Amazon, calling it a big step in being able to fully get back up and running. “Now we can actually rebuild Parler,” Matze said via FoxNews. “It’s critically important.” How exactly are they going about this rebuild? Parler can thank the Russian-based firm DDos-Guard for its semi-return. While DDos-Guard is now Parler’s hosting site, the company didn’t reveal what other services it is providing. In a statement DDos-Guard provided to The Hill, they said, “The security provider is not at liberty to disclose the services provided to the customers as it contradicts our privacy policy. However, due to the increased media attention, we have to state that the customer does not use the hosting service.”

Matze is more upbeat about Parler’s return than he was just a few days ago when Parler was taken down. With the help of DDos-Guard, Matze is ready to go. “We’re going to be putting periodic updates there,” Matze said “We’re going to try to get an update out every day… so that people can stay up to date with the site.” Not only is he slowly getting Parler up and running, but he is also attempting to take Amazon to court claiming Amazon’s decision to cut ties with Parler is “motivated by political animus” and also is both an antitrust violation and a breach of their contract.

This will be a battle worth following.