- Parler has relaunched with a Tea Party Patriots co-founder at the top.
- The social-media platform was taken offline by Amazon Web Services in January.
- The site, a favorite for the far-right, was found to be a planning hub for Capitol insurrectionists.
- Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.
Parler, the preferred social media platform for the far-right, announced Monday that it was back online after it was dropped by an Amazon hosting service on January 11.
The site became a haven for pro-Trump extremists ahead of, and during, the Capitol insurrection. Amazon Web Services (AWS) found that it “poses a very real risk to public safety.”
On Monday, the company announced that site was up and running with a Tea Party co-founder serving as interim CEO. Mark Meckler, an attorney, political activist, and founder of the Tea Party Patriots, replaced former CEO and co-founder John Matze, who was fired by the company’s board earlier this month.
In a statement Monday, Meckler said, “Parler was built to offer a social media platform that protects free speech and values privacy and civil discourse,” highlighting the platform’s focus on freedom of speech. “Parler is being run by an experienced team and is here to stay. We will thrive as the premier social media platform dedicated to free speech, privacy and civil dialogue,” the statement said.
—Tyler Adkisson (@tyadkisson) February 15, 2021
According to publicly available WHOIS data, the domain is registered with Epik, which also hosts Gab, another far-right social-media platform.
A spokesperson did not immediately return Insider’s request for comment.
Parler is largely funded by Rebekah Mercer, a conservative megadonor whose family was among the most influential backers of then-candidate Donald Trump in 2016. Dan Bongino, a conservative activist, has also said he’s a co-owner.
The company came under scrutiny after the Capitol insurrection as evidence emerged that the rioters had used Parler and other platforms to coordinate the attack.
Apple and Google removed Parler from their app stores shortly after the insurrection, saying it had continued to allow content that threatened to escalate violence in violation of their policies. Amazon then removed Parler’s access to its web-hosting services, and other tech companies refused to do business with it, effectively taking the platform offline.
Parler will immediately bring back its current users during the first week of the relaunch and intends to allow new users to sign up the following week, the statement said.