According to TechCrunch, After President Donald Trump’s restriction on the world’s largest social networks, subscribers are surging on tiny, conservative, social media sites, even as those platforms see access hassled by the app marketplaces of the biggest players in tech.
The social network, Parler, a Twitter-mimic network, is now the number one app in the Apple app store and Gab, another conservative-backed service, reported that the number of signups to its web-based platform was also experiencing an explosion.
According to data from the analytics service Sensor Tower, Parler saw approximately 210,000 installs globally on Friday 1/8, up 281 percent from approximately 55,000 on 1/7.
“The app saw about 182,000 first-time downloads on 1/8 in the U.S., up 355 percent from about 40,000 installs on 1/7. The app has seen nearly 268,000 installations from across U.S. app stores since Wednesday, a Sensor Tower press rep wrote in an email.
For the business, Parler’s ballooning user base comes at a potentially dangerous time. It has already been removed from Google’s Play store and if it does not implement any content moderation functionality, Apple is considering suspending the social media software as well.
With what is maybe the laxest content management online, both Parler and Gab have billed themselves as havens for free speech.
The two businesses have left up content posted by an alleged Russian disinformation campaign in the past and encourage users to traffic in conspiracy theories that have been shut down by other social media sites.
With these sites, the presumption is that users on the platforms are responsible for mutating and blocking trolls or offensive content, but those who enter these platforms will normally be among like-minded users by their very nature.
Their user counts may be growing, but the services may soon have a hard time attracting would-be adopters.
Google said on Friday night that it will instantly delete Parler from their Play Store, suspending the app before the developers agreed to a policy of moderation and compliance that could manage offensive material on the site.
On Friday, Buzzfeed News announced that Parler had received a letter from Apple telling them that unless the company submitted an update with a moderation enhancement plan, the app would be removed from the App Store within 24 hours.
Apple’s action was reported by Parler CEO John Matze in a post on his Parler account where he shared a screenshot of Apple’s notification.
We want to be clear that Parler is genuinely accountable for all user-generated material on your service and to ensure that this content meets the safety and security standards of our users in the App Store,” reads the text from the screenshot.” We’re not going to distribute applications that present unsafe and harmful content.
According to a November article on The Wall Street Journal, Parler is backed by a conservative billionaire heiress, Rebekah Mercer.
Established in 2018, with every dispute between more social media platforms and outgoing President Trump, the app has seen increases in consumer adoption. According to The Journal, Parler had some 10 million users in November.
The platform has been joined by users including Fox Business anchor Maria Bartiromo and the conservative talk show host Dan Bongino, a wildly successful Facebook figure who is also an investor in Parler.
Bongino called the organization “a collective middle finger to the tech tyrants” in the journal post.
It’s worth remembering that after the Trump prohibitions, Parler and Gab are not the only businesses to see user numbers skyrocket.
According to data from the analytics firm Apptopia, MeWe Network, OANN, Newsmax and Rumble have also seen adoption soar.
For two days, Parler was the #1 app on the iOS app store, rising from 18th on Thursday and 592 on Wednesday, the company noted. Overall, with 8.1 million new downloads, the app was the 10th most downloaded social media app in 2020.
A company analyst noted, “It’s an event-driven app though.” “We see bursts of downloads and usage after events like the election, BLM protests, Twitter first applying labels to Trump’s Tweets, but it will drop off then.”