Shapes of things (13)

Federal Judge Barbara Rothstein has denied Parler’s motion for a preliminary injunction ordering Amazon to reinstate it. Judge Rothstein’s order was posted online here by NPR. NPR’s story collects quotes from the players.

Judge Rothstein isn’t a judge friendly to Parler, but this result is otherwise unsurprising. A plaintiff has to meet a high bar to obtain preliminary injunctive relief. That’s just the way it is. Judge Rothstein herself notes in her conclusion, however, that she is “not dismissing Parler’s substantive underlying claims at this point.” If it can survive, Parler lives to fight another day. If.

Parler has posted this statement on the site as it exists in its current form:

We are disappointed by the judge’s ruling against our request for a preliminary injunction in our suit against Amazon AWS. We remain confident that we will ultimately prevail in the main case. We also remind everyone that this litigation is still in its early stages and that the resolution of this case will have broad implications for our pluralistic society.

Parler is gratified that the court refused to uncritically accept Amazon’s argument – widely repeated in the media – that the Parler platform was somehow used to plan, coordinate or execute the despicable January 6 riot at the Capitol.

Based on the evidence of which we are aware, the Parler platform was not used in that manner – even though competing platforms clearly were used for that purpose. We are grateful the court refused to join the dishonest attempt to make Parler the scapegoat for the riot.

At the same time, Parler is disappointed that the court’s ruling ignored the reality that every social-media platform – including Amazon’s own online store – sometimes unwittingly hosts content that incites violence or is otherwise inappropriate. In fact, our analysis shows that the incidence of such material on Parler is far lower than on competing platforms. Parler has developed an artificial intelligence-based enforcement system that we believe will reduce the incidence of such content still further.

Parler looks forward to working with old and new partners to reestablish an alternative social-media platform that not only avoids the unnecessary censorship that has become increasingly popular with its competitors, but is also more protective of public safety.

If I knew of a way for readers to support Parler in its dispute with Amazon, I would add it here, but I don’t.