Top line

Conservative social network Parler was checking if it was being used to coordinate the January 6th Capitol attack and reported more than 50 violent posts to the FBI on the Thursday before the riot.

Trump supporters attempt to break a police cordon at the Capitol on Wednesday, January 6, 2021 … [+] Washington. Scam.

AP Photo / John Minchillo

Key factors

In a letter to the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, Parler’s attorneys argued that the app would become a scapegoat, even though it actually alerted the FBI to specific threats to the Capitol when pre-attack protests were then planned.

Parler said it has forwarded violent content to the FBI “over 50 times”, including a post where a user said protesters should be armed because “Trump needs us to cause the mayhem in order for the #insurrectionact to go into effect put “, a post that says” Don’t be surprised if we take the #capital (sic) building, “and a photo of Hillary Clinton behind a noose.

The FBI issued a bulletin the day before the attack warned of potential extremist violence, according to the Washington Post, although it is unclear whether this report, which never made it into the leadership of the Capitol Police, was based on the post of Parler.

Parler did not address the spread of misinformation about the elections, which was widespread on the platform both before and after the attack, and was cited or reported calling for “civil war” as part of the cause of the uprising in the app during the pre-siege speech of former President Donald Trump.

The FBI did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Forbes.

Crucial quote

Far from being the far-right instigator and villain that Big Tech Parler portrayed, the facts conclusively show that Parler is a responsible and law-abiding company focused on ensuring that only free and lawful ones are featured on its platform There is freedom of speech. “Says the letter.

Key background

Founded in 2018 as a free expression of opinion on major social networks, Parler quickly became a haven for conservative and right-wing content. But the app underwent closer scrutiny after the Capitol uprising, prompting Apple and Google to remove it from their app stores. Amazon banned the company from using its cloud computing platform and prevented the app from working at all. Former CEO John Matze claims in a lawsuit that he wanted to ban neo-Nazi groups and QAnon to get back on the App Store, but Parler’s leadership team, including conservative mega-donor Rebekah Mercer, were resilient and fired him instead. Parler eventually found another cloud provider, Los Angeles-based SkySilk, and is back with a bare-bones website, but its mobile app is still offline.