37 votes

It's official: Apple has removed Parler from the App Store

30 comments

  1. [9]
    daturkel
    Link
    Amazon is kicking Parler of AWS tomorrow night, which I don't think I've ever heard of happening before. Can't say I'll be sad to see them go.

    Amazon is kicking Parler of AWS tomorrow night, which I don't think I've ever heard of happening before. Can't say I'll be sad to see them go.

    30 votes
    1. [2]
      stu2b50
      Link Parent
      Wow, that might actually kill them. It's still possible to find hosts - 8chan still exists, sort of, after all - but even if they do, they'll have to cut down on what they can offer. 8chan is...

      Wow, that might actually kill them. It's still possible to find hosts - 8chan still exists, sort of, after all - but even if they do, they'll have to cut down on what they can offer. 8chan is incredibly flakey and a chan message board is about as light as you can get in terms of resources.

      10 votes
      1. teaearlgraycold
        Link Parent
        I really hope Parler fell victim to vendor lock in and will have a hard time migrating to non AWS hosts.

        I really hope Parler fell victim to vendor lock in and will have a hard time migrating to non AWS hosts.

        10 votes
    2. [6]
      pvik
      Link Parent
      I think Parler being kicked off AWS after their apps were pulled from Google and Apple play store is good thing. Apparently, the number of app downloads on the app store surged for parler before...

      I think Parler being kicked off AWS after their apps were pulled from Google and Apple play store is good thing.

      Apparently, the number of app downloads on the app store surged for parler before it was pulled [1], but with their upstream servers going down, all those iOS downloads are going to be useless now. I don't think normal iPhones allow apps to be side-loaded easily. (ofc, android users may still be able to download and install apk, if parler starts distributing it directly from their new site, whenever it comes back up)

      6 votes
      1. [5]
        skybrian
        Link Parent
        Don’t they have a website? I don’t know if the mobile apps are actually necessary.

        Don’t they have a website? I don’t know if the mobile apps are actually necessary.

        2 votes
        1. [3]
          Amarok
          Link Parent
          They did have a website. Presumably once they move to a different host they will again, too. They'll host the apps and apk files (and hermit files etc) on their own site and people will be able to...

          They did have a website. Presumably once they move to a different host they will again, too. They'll host the apps and apk files (and hermit files etc) on their own site and people will be able to use it again.

          That's if they can find a host (at this scale, a non-trivial business class problem) that is willing to take them. Considering they collect phone numbers from their members, this is a prime opportunity for someone to fleece them with a hosting deal and get the contact info of the entire Trump movement.

          4 votes
          1. [2]
            cfabbro
            Link Parent
            Related: Parler CEO Says Service Dropped By “Every Vendor” And Could End His Business

            That's if they can find a host...

            Related: Parler CEO Says Service Dropped By “Every Vendor” And Could End His Business

            “Every vendor from text message services to email providers to our lawyers all ditched us too on the same day,” Matze said today on Fox News.

            He added: “We’re going to try our best to get back online as quickly as possible. But we’re having a lot of trouble because every vendor we talk to says they won’t work with us. Because if Apple doesn’t approve and Google doesn’t approve, they won’t.”

            5 votes
            1. Amarok
              Link Parent
              Ironically, a lot of the criminal-friendly hosting services (including bulletproof hosts) won't take them, either. They just don't want to deal with that much heat. Protip: Ask Iceland. They have...

              Ironically, a lot of the criminal-friendly hosting services (including bulletproof hosts) won't take them, either. They just don't want to deal with that much heat.

              Protip: Ask Iceland. They have the strongest free speech protections out there right now. Just don't do it unless Parler is really willing to work with them, if it insists on going full-nazi even they will pull the plug.

              4 votes
  2. [2]
    RNG
    Link
    For context, Parler has already been removed from the Play Store [1]. It also has been removed from APKMirror, so it is unlikely you'll be able to side-load it from a credible source (unless...

    For context, Parler has already been removed from the Play Store [1]. It also has been removed from APKMirror, so it is unlikely you'll be able to side-load it from a credible source (unless Parler releases the APK on their site) [2]. Obviously, the site is still accessible via a mobile browser.

    [1] https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/08/tech/parler-google-play-removed/index.html

    [2] https://www.androidpolice.com/2021/01/08/parler-social-network-app-removed-from-google-play-after-apple-threatens-ban/

    10 votes
    1. suspended
      Link Parent
      More warm fuzzy feelings for me and, hopefully, many others.

      More warm fuzzy feelings for me and, hopefully, many others.

      8 votes
  3. [19]
    teaearlgraycold
    Link
    What do you guys think about this recent string of events? Trump and some of his cronies have been banned from Twitter. Reddit has banned a few far-right insane subreddits. Parler is getting...

    What do you guys think about this recent string of events? Trump and some of his cronies have been banned from Twitter. Reddit has banned a few far-right insane subreddits. Parler is getting nuked. We're seeing only the most fringe sites get silenced - or more realistically, pushed into the shadows. Should this have happened sooner? Now that it's happening, should the scope get expanded?

    I know personally I'd love to see everything from Parler to Fox News to Murdock-owned local news shut down. But even though I'm convinced those media outlets are a net negative for the world I feel uncomfortable with the elimination of even such extreme ideologies. The US is not in a stable state where we can be sure that this year's push against fascism will hold. Even if my dream of a propaganda free state were to come true, it's easy for the silenced to use that as an excuse to retaliate should things swing back in their favor.

    5 votes
    1. [8]
      tindall
      Link Parent
      It should have been impossible and irrelevant. In a world where most people were part of small local, family, affinity, or interest-based Internet communities, those communities could have been...

      It should have been impossible and irrelevant. In a world where most people were part of small local, family, affinity, or interest-based Internet communities, those communities could have been moderating away this kind of behavior and those that didn't would have been ostracized, as we see with the fediverse isolating Gab and the like.

      6 votes
      1. [7]
        skybrian
        Link Parent
        I think that’s optimistic about what sort of communities these would be? It seems like there would be plenty of conservative and religious communities. Do you think some random hunting or gun...

        I think that’s optimistic about what sort of communities these would be? It seems like there would be plenty of conservative and religious communities. Do you think some random hunting or gun forum would moderate the way you hope? Quite probably it would be leftists and LGBT being ostracized.

        It is a bit weird that we ended up in a world where big tech staffed largely by Bay Area liberals (-ish) control so much of social media infrastructure. There are activists at these companies who wanted to do more since Trump was elected but management was holding them back.

        It wasn’t like that back when we were on BBS’s and Fidonet.

        6 votes
        1. [6]
          stu2b50
          Link Parent
          Indeed, I think it's good to remember that /r/thedonald, /r/conservative, /r/tlou2 (lol), etc. all exists as essentially small federated spaces (until Reddit takes the banhammer to them, but i...

          Indeed, I think it's good to remember that /r/thedonald, /r/conservative, /r/tlou2 (lol), etc. all exists as essentially small federated spaces (until Reddit takes the banhammer to them, but i digress) - I don't think federation magically makes this kind of rhetoric stop. In current space, that's also what the dot win sites are.

          5 votes
          1. [5]
            tindall
            Link Parent
            My point isn't that federated models make ultra-right-wingers stop existing (nor, will I point out, is that what I said) - it makes them stay on their own turf, and gives everyone else the ability...

            My point isn't that federated models make ultra-right-wingers stop existing (nor, will I point out, is that what I said) - it makes them stay on their own turf, and gives everyone else the ability to ostracize them on the 'net like most people do in real life.

            Quite probably it would be leftists and LGBT being ostracized.

            This is why I gave the example of the fediverse, which is a real, living example of over 2 million people doing just the opposite.

            3 votes
            1. [4]
              skybrian
              Link Parent
              I agree that having smaller communities seems like a good way to go. The fediverse is one model, and that's why we're here, right? One question to consider is why we need federation. How about...

              I agree that having smaller communities seems like a good way to go. The fediverse is one model, and that's why we're here, right?

              One question to consider is why we need federation. How about isolation? That's how blogging worked, and Substack is doing well. Don't cross the streams, it annoys everyone. Each community has its own rules that you learn when you join. Maybe the problem with Reddit is that subreddits aren't isolated enough?

              I think one answer is that to get a small community off the ground, you need to promote it somewhere else. How do people discover it? One possibility is cross-promotion, as bloggers used to do. Also, link-sharing, as we do and Hacker News does. It's not really isolation when we're still all on the web. But it seems that it's not enough and Twitter and Facebook are still good places to go to promote things.

              An advantage with the Substack model has is that there is at least one person who is either already well-known or is interested in putting a serious effort to write content and promote the community, and there is a built-in way of raising money.

              Inevitably, though, people are going to have opinions about which other communities should exist, once they find out about them. Substack is not Reddit, but I could still see people who have a substack getting upset at the existence of another substack. You could see that as a benefit or a drawback, depending on how you feel about the existence of toxic forums and ability to organize and apply pressure to do something about them.

              2 votes
              1. [3]
                tindall
                Link Parent
                We don't always need federation - for instance, I think Tildes is fine without it, as is, say, Lines. But federation solves your "promote it somewhere else" problem - if your thing does...

                We don't always need federation - for instance, I think Tildes is fine without it, as is, say, Lines. But federation solves your "promote it somewhere else" problem - if your thing does ActivityPub, all you need is for one person on another AP server to follow you, and your thing is getting exposure on that AP server.

                If your community aims to be a single community, it's fine without federation - but, in my opinion, multiple communities under a single management/moderation hierarchy is a recipe for disaster. Federation is a nice middle ground, where different communities can still interact but each is independently moderated.

                2 votes
                1. [2]
                  emdash
                  Link Parent
                  I'm sure you know this, but I believe ActivityPub doesn't require implementers to implement server-to-server for it to be ActivityPub compliant, so if you're explicitly not wanting to do...

                  if your thing does ActivityPub, all you need is for one person on another AP server to follow you, and your thing is getting exposure on that AP server.

                  I'm sure you know this, but I believe ActivityPub doesn't require implementers to implement server-to-server for it to be ActivityPub compliant, so if you're explicitly not wanting to do federation, then that's totally possible.

                  1 vote
                  1. tindall
                    Link Parent
                    True! I'm not entirely sure what the point of that would be, though, unless you wanted to use the C2S for your native clients.

                    True! I'm not entirely sure what the point of that would be, though, unless you wanted to use the C2S for your native clients.

                    1 vote
    2. [10]
      3d12
      Link Parent
      Great question. For my two cents, I think people give the "big tech" companies too much grief over this. If the history of the internet has taught us anything, these people will always find a...

      Great question. For my two cents, I think people give the "big tech" companies too much grief over this. If the history of the internet has taught us anything, these people will always find a place to go. Think back to when 7chan split off from 4chan because of the "nazi mods" (oh how deliciously ironic) -- to adapt a quote from The Phantom Menace, "there's always a more racist racist." Now, I'm not making excuses for any big tech, I do think they've profiteered this misinformation by holding these users above their standard ToS for revenue's sake, but I think people sometimes forget just how easy it is to make another platform and spread word of it around. This time from Field of Dreams, "if you build it, they will come."

      3 votes
      1. [4]
        tindall
        Link Parent
        The difference is that these big tech companies force the rest of us to be in the same place, or else suffer significant social consequences. They've decided to leverage their monopoly status to...

        If the history of the internet has taught us anything, these people will always find a place to go.

        The difference is that these big tech companies force the rest of us to be in the same place, or else suffer significant social consequences. They've decided to leverage their monopoly status to shut down smaller spaces with stricter moderation as much as possible, so they need to take responsibility for that moderation.

        6 votes
        1. [3]
          3d12
          Link Parent
          Can you elaborate a little? I feel like calling them "significant social consequences" is a little disingenuous, but since I don't use Facebook maybe I'm just oblivious to the consequences you're...

          Can you elaborate a little? I feel like calling them "significant social consequences" is a little disingenuous, but since I don't use Facebook maybe I'm just oblivious to the consequences you're referring to. How am I suffering?

          Additionally, calling them a monopoly also seems a bit hyperbolic considering that Parler (the topic of this thread) is far from a monopolistic entity, and some (perhaps most?) extremist planning happens on smaller communities and boards. (8kun, stormfront, probably others but I haven't followed that scene for a long time)

          But I do see your point. I think these are the companies that attract media attention because they're more familiar to people, so running a story like "violence being planned on Facebook" is less controversial than "violence being planned on 8kun" because the news organization isn't giving a small extremist site attention, just reporting on activities on Facebook. Just because it's safer for the media organization doesn't mean that these are the centralized hubs for this behavior though, just the most public ones.

          3 votes
          1. [2]
            tindall
            Link Parent
            I also don't use Facebook, and because of that, I'm often informed of important happenings in my family days or even weeks after they occur. Things like proposals, weddings, births, etc. Several...

            but since I don't use Facebook maybe I'm just oblivious to the consequences you're referring to. How am I suffering?

            I also don't use Facebook, and because of that, I'm often informed of important happenings in my family days or even weeks after they occur. Things like proposals, weddings, births, etc. Several communities I'm part of in Chicago organize their events through Facebook; I have people who tell me about those events once organized, but there's no real way to have input on scheduling and sometimes I don't hear about something until after it's happened.

            Additionally, calling them a monopoly also seems a bit hyperbolic

            I'm only calling Facebook, Twitter, and perhaps Discord monopolies - they have monopoly control or aspirations of such over the spaces of mutual, broadcast, and instant messaging respectively. While a lot of the actual violent planning happens elsewhere, the pipeline to radicalization very much begins on Twitter, Discord, and Facebook specifically.

            4 votes
            1. 3d12
              Link Parent
              Thanks for elaborating, I see what you mean now. The family stuff is more of a missed benefit to me than a consequence, but that's just being picky. Now that you mention about organizations...

              Thanks for elaborating, I see what you mean now. The family stuff is more of a missed benefit to me than a consequence, but that's just being picky. Now that you mention about organizations though, I do admit I have missed out on a few events because there's no non-Facebook way to hear about them. To be honest, that's something I've only really seen among the younger crowd, since people who planned events before Facebook was around have usually been able to accommodate in my experience. And for those that can't, I don't really feel too sad about not going. It really is a form of discrimination; not a very serious one compared to famous examples from the past, but still one that says more about the discriminator than the discriminatee, in my opinion.

              1 vote
      2. [5]
        joplin
        Link Parent
        Strongly disagree. It seems pretty clear that all of this was made possible by giving a forum to radicals and then using automation to show them more and more extreme content to draw them in and...

        I think people give the "big tech" companies too much grief over this.

        Strongly disagree. It seems pretty clear that all of this was made possible by giving a forum to radicals and then using automation to show them more and more extreme content to draw them in and keep them "engaged." These groups have existed for literally centuries, but they were kept in check by the fact that if they talked about their views publicly, they'd be ostracized from interacting with others because people would find them so toxic they wouldn't want to be around them. It was difficult to find other like-minded people and come up with wild conspiracy theories about why the world is the way it is and wild plans to violently change it. You could find it if you went looking for it before, but most people wouldn't bother. Now it's shoved down your throat relentlessly while you're doing anything else. The blame lies entirely with big tech companies trying to improve engagement without thinking at all about the consequences and not doing anything to curb extremist behaviors. My spouse would regularly report extremist content to Facebook, and they'd respond with "we reviewed this and it's fine. We're leaving it up." Gee thanks.

        6 votes
        1. [4]
          3d12
          Link Parent
          I'm glad you disagree with the first couple sentences, but I think our points were actually quite the same. This is a hard agree from me. However, All fall under "citation needed" for me. Maybe I...

          I'm glad you disagree with the first couple sentences, but I think our points were actually quite the same.

          These groups have existed for literally centuries

          This is a hard agree from me. However,

          but they were kept in check
          people [...] wouldn't want to be around them.
          difficult to find other like-minded people and come up with wild conspiracy theories
          most people wouldn't bother

          All fall under "citation needed" for me. Maybe I just hung out in too many shithole websites in my youth, but I stick to my "if you build it, they will come" analysis. It's truthfully not hard, especially in this era of immediate information transmission, to spread word of a "new cool moderation-free zone" and post it on all the sites you can until enough people join. Facebook, Twitter et al are merely the most public faces of this and therefore become the milquetoast media focus in an attempt to make headlines.

          And again I'll re-iterate, I do think big tech is failing in their duties of moderation, and profiteering the inflammatory and hate-inciting information in an immoral attempt to make money off of clicks. So please don't mistake me for some big tech shill. Just saying that the internet is much larger than FAANG, a concept that seems lost on anyone who's never used a computer that didn't have a touch screen.

          3 votes
          1. [3]
            joplin
            Link Parent
            I think we're talking about different things. I was talking pre-web (hence my reference to "literally centuries"). Like you could make your own racist newspaper (and people did!) but very few...

            All fall under "citation needed" for me. Maybe I just hung out in too many shithole websites in my youth, but I stick to my "if you build it, they will come" analysis.

            I think we're talking about different things. I was talking pre-web (hence my reference to "literally centuries"). Like you could make your own racist newspaper (and people did!) but very few people would buy it or want to be seen reading it (at least during my lifetime). Agreed that the web makes it easier to find stuff!

            3 votes
            1. skybrian
              Link Parent
              It seems like this conversation is pretty vague and it would help to be more specific about which years you're talking about and what kind of communication you mean. If we're talking about history...

              It seems like this conversation is pretty vague and it would help to be more specific about which years you're talking about and what kind of communication you mean.

              If we're talking about history in the "centuries" realm, it's hard to make direct comparisons because a lot of the weirder ideas we see now were associated with religion, and weirdo religious nonsense was widespread. Also, many of the things discussed with strangers on the Internet were previously discussed in person, face to face. There are a lot of churches and secular secret societies that used mysticism.

              So, in the US anyway, putting up with weirdo conspiracy nonsense often went along with religious tolerance (and intolerance).

              3 votes
            2. 3d12
              Link Parent
              Gotcha. Yeah, sorry I misinterpreted then. Thanks for clarifying! Yeesh, picturing a pre-web print newspaper that reads similarly to Parler actually just gave me shivers. Not going to google that...

              Gotcha. Yeah, sorry I misinterpreted then. Thanks for clarifying! Yeesh, picturing a pre-web print newspaper that reads similarly to Parler actually just gave me shivers. Not going to google that today, nope.

              2 votes