Google suspends Parler social networking app from Play Store; Apple gives 24-hour warning

Google suspends Parler social networking app from Play Store; Apple gives 24-hour warning

Social media startup Parler, which touts itself as free from fact-checking and censorship, has
File photo of the Parler logo on a smartphone. (File photo: AFP/Olivier Douliery)

REUTERS: Google on Friday (Jan 8) suspended the Parler social networking app from its Play Store until the app adds “robust” content moderation while Apple gave the service 24 hours to submit a detailed moderation plan.

Parler is a social network to which many supporters of US President Donald Trump have migrated after being banned from services including Twitter, which on Friday permanently suspended Trump's account.

READ: Twitter 'permanently suspends' Donald Trump's account

In a statement, Google cited continued posts in the Parler app that seek "to incite ongoing violence in the US".

Google said: "For us to distribute an app through Google Play, we do require that apps implement robust moderation for egregious content. In light of this ongoing and urgent public safety threat, we are suspending the app’s listings from the Play Store until it addresses these issues."

In a letter from Apple's App Store review team to Parler seen by Reuters, Apple cited instances of participants using the service to make plans to descend on Washington DC, with weapons after a mob stormed the US Capitol building on Wednesday.

READ: Commentary: Facebook’s eleventh-hour suspension of Trump’s account raises questions about its motives

"Content that threatens the well-being of others or is intended to incite violence or other lawless acts has never been acceptable on the App Store," Apple said in the letter.

Apple gave Parler 24 hours to "remove all objectionable content from your app ... as well as any content referring to harm to people or attacks on government facilities now or at any future date". 

The company also demanded that Parler submit a written plan "to moderate and filter this content" from the app.

Apple declined to comment. 

Source: Reuters/mi