Apple has allowed the update of the app of a free speech-centric social media platform to go forward after a retweet regarding the situation by Donald Trump Jr.
According to the CEO of Parler, John Matze, Apple had threatened to move the platform off of the App Store if it didn’t ban “offensive material” — which Matze took to mean conservative material.
“Apple contacted me over a week ago via telephone saying that we need to ban ‘offensive’ content off Parler or they will take Parler off the App Store,” John Matze wrote on a Parler post.
“We flat out refused and now we cannot push updates. Obviously by offensive they mean conservative content.”
In an appearance on conservative radio host Todd Starnes’ show, Matze said that his company was told to take certain kinds of people off of the platform.
“[Apple’s] justification for why Parler should be removed is selective because Twitter is a leftist hate haven yet Parler is a global community discussion platform,” Matze told The Western Journal earlier this week. “ISIS videos with thousands of views [are on Twitter] yet Parler is dangerous?”
“BREAKING NEWS: Apple is threatening to kick Parler off the App Store if the app does not ban ‘offensive’ content,” he wrote.
“Apple just wants Parler to ban conservative content!”
BREAKING NEWS: Apple is threatening to kick Parler off the App Store if the app does not ban “offensive” content.
Apple just wants Parler to ban conservative content!
RT and call Apple at +1 (408) 974-2992 to demand answers!
Follow me for updates —> https://t.co/USHcsosVBj
— Ryan Fournier (@RyanAFournier) June 25, 2019
After Trump’s retweet, Apple reinstated Parler’s ability to update the app on Tuesday night. According to Breitbart, Matze said in a statement that he felt there were two reasons for the reinstatement.
First, “[t]here is a community of moderate conservatives talking without control of a major tech company. Twitter is losing their market share and they want to hurt us. We are a serious threat to Twitter and big tech’s control over the leftist narrative. We are about to cross 500k users.”
Second, “[s]talling the updates is a method they are using to hurt our ability to update users experience and slow our growth without giving them the bad PR associated with taking us off the store.”
“They know that 140k iPhone users in Saudi [Arabia] need this update and 90% of Saudi [Arabia] is primarily on iOS. The longer they stall, the more angry American users will get at the Saudies [sic] because the Americans cannot understand their Arabic text.
“More hate will be generated on Parler artificially due to slowing this update and more negative publicity for Parler,” he continued. “I honestly believe they are protecting Twitter after Parler took 2% of Twitter’s market share in Saudi overnight.”
Whether or not that’s accurate is a matter of debate.
What is true, however, is that this was quickly becoming something that Apple couldn’t just ignore. Parler wasn’t going to be shifted to the back burner — not, at least, when the president’s son was tweeting about it.
Will the tech giant make another move on Parler? Time will tell, particularly when the public’s gaze is off of the controversy.
At least for now, however, it’s not in danger of being taken off of the store — in part, possibly, because of the fact that Trump Jr. managed to focus attention on it.
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