Amazon has told Parler it will suspend the company’s AWS hosting services access, according to BuzzFeed News. The news comes on the same day that Apple suspended the social media app, which supporters of President Donald Trump and far-right extremists used to plan the January 6th riot at the US Capitol, and one day after Google similarly removed it from the Play Store. The suspension will go into effect on Sunday. Unless Parler can find a new host before then, it will go offline.
In an email obtained by BuzzFeed News, a member of the Amazon Web Services Trust and Safety team told the company it violated its terms and services, adding that Amazon is unconvinced Parler will be able to effectively moderate its platform relying only on a team of volunteers. We’ve reached out to Amazon for comment, and we’ll update this article when we hear back from the company.
“Over the past several weeks, we’ve reported 98 examples to Parler of posts that clearly encourage and incite violence... It’s clear that Parler does not have an effective process to comply with the AWS terms of service. It also seems that Parler is still trying to determine its position on content moderation,” the letter reads. “Because Parler cannot comply with our terms of service and poses a very real risk to public safety, we plan to suspend Parler’s account effective Sunday, January 10th, at 11:59PM PST.”
Parler CEO John Matze confirmed the suspension on Saturday evening. “Sunday (tomorrow) at midnight Amazon will be shutting off all of our servers...” he said in a post on the platform. “There is the possibility Parler will be unavailable on the internet for up to a week as we rebuild from scratch. We prepared for events like this by never relying on amazons [sic] proprietary infrastructure and building bare metal products.”
Without a host and no access to either the App Store or Google Play, it’s hard to see where Parler goes from here. Matze said Parler has “many” companies competing for its business. Whether that’s true or not, is somewhat beside the point. In many ways, the damage is already done. Wednesday’s riot left five people dead, many more injured and the event will likely cause lasting repercussions for months and years to come.