Google pulls app Freedom app Parler for “serious content”

Google said on Friday that it had taken the Parler app from its mobile store to allow “serious content” that could provoke deadly violence such as that seen at the US Capitol.

Parliament’s social network has become a haven for right-wing extremist personalities who say they have been censored by other social media platforms.

“We are aware of continued posts in the Parler app aimed at stimulating ongoing violence in the United States,” Google said in a response to an AFP inquiry.

“In order to deploy an app through Google Play, we require apps to implement robust content moderation,” the company added, referring to its digital content store tailored for Android-powered devices.

Policies and enforcement practices that slow down posts that encourage violence are approved by app developers whose software is made available on Google Play, according to Silicon Valley Internet Titan.

“Given this ongoing and urgent threat to public safety, we are shutting down the app’s lists from the Play Store until it addresses these issues,” Google said.

Apple has reportedly warned Parler that its software could be removed from the App Store if it does not take action to prevent users from planning illegal, violent activities on the platform, such as the deadly attack in Washington.

Conservatives who support President Donald Trump’s allegations of misconduct in the election have triggered a migration to alternative social media sites that have refrained from filtering unverified allegations.

The shift has given right-wing favorites such as Parler, Newsmax and Rumble, who have rejected Facebook and Twitter’s strategy of labeling and limiting the scope of conspiracy theories.

Facebook and Twitter banned Trump accounts on Friday for fear he would use them to initiate another attack like the one in the country’s capital on Wednesday.

Websites like Parler have attracted Republican lawmakers as well as the Trump campaign.

As they have become increasingly important for the political conversation, Twitter and Facebook have struggled with manipulation and misinformation, while trying to keep their platforms open to different views.

Parls and similar sites have become a magnet for racist and anti-Semitic tropes along with groups that have been banned from other platforms for publishing hateful content or promoting violence.

(AFP)