Apple said to deny Parler app back into App Store

The controversial social network, which came under scrutiny following the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, was kicked out of the app store for insufficient moderation.

Ian Sherr Contributor and Former Editor at Large / News
Ian Sherr (he/him/his) grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, so he's always had a connection to the tech world. As an editor at large at CNET, he wrote about Apple, Microsoft, VR, video games and internet troubles. Aside from writing, he tinkers with tech at home, is a longtime fencer -- the kind with swords -- and began woodworking during the pandemic.
Ian Sherr
2 min read

Apple has said Parler isn't moderating its service well enough.

Angela Lang/CNET

Apple has reportedly told the social network Parler that it still can't publish its app in the iPhone and iPad App Store. Apple banned the controversial social network, which is popular with extremists and conspiracy theorists, after insurrectionists attacked the US Capitol on Jan. 6. The participants posted photos and videos of the mayhem on Parler as it was happening, and soon law enforcement learned the attack had been openly planned on the social network as well.

"There is no place for hateful, racist, discriminatory content on the App Store," Apple wrote to Parler's chief policy officer on Feb. 25, according to Bloomberg, which earlier reported the news. At the time, Parler had said it was reworking its moderation rules in response to Apple's concerns. "After having reviewed the new information, we do not believe these changes are sufficient to comply with App Store Review guidelines," said in its message.

Apple wasn't the only tech company to act, either. Within days of the Capitol attack, other tech giants, including Google and Amazon , kicked the social network off their services, citing violations of their policies against hate speech and violence.

Neither Apple nor Parler immediately responded to requests for comment.

Apple's most recent decision against Parler marks the latest way Silicon Valley companies are attempting to push back against gathering places and publications that are popular with extremists. As Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have slowly ramped up moderation of their namesake social networks, they've collectively banned thousands of accounts. The tech giants have also shut down accounts of high-profile conservative politicians and pundits, who they say are inspiring or participating in hate campaigns.

Conservative politicians such as Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Missouri Sen. Josh Hawley and former President Donald Trump have argued these bans are politically driven and that the big tech companies are violating people's right to free expression. Trump's own social media accounts were banned from Facebook, Twitter and YouTube following the Jan. 6 attack, over fears he would use the platforms to spark further violence.