Grammy award-winning American rapper, songwriter, record producer, and fashion designer Kanye West, who also goes by Ye, has agreed to buy the social media “free speech” platform called Parler, according to a Monday statement by both parties. The development, according to them, will create a space for individuals looking to express their conservative opinions freely. The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed but Kanye West will be the full owner of the social media company after the deal has been completed, but the social network will continue to receive its technical support from Parlement Technologies. It will also continue to have access to Parlement Technologies’ private cloud services and its data center infrastructure. The deal is expected to close before the end of the year.
Recently, Kanye West accused Twitter of censoring his tweets. “In a world where conservative opinions are considered to be controversial, we have to make sure we have the right to freely express ourselves.” The billionaire and music mogul was also recently locked out of his Twitter and Instagram accounts for posting anti-Semitic messages. He has also been described by other celebrities as being a bully, among other things.
Parler was founded in 2018 by John Matze and Rebekah Mercer, and presented itself as a platform looking to fight against censorship. The platform is one of the increasing “free speech” platforms that are making the rounds. In a statement, the company said that “The proposed acquisition will assure Parler a future role in creating an uncancelable ecosystem where all voices are welcome.”
According to data from Sensor Tower, Parler has a little over 250,000 monthly active users on its iOS and Android apps. Also, according to Pew Research, in a survey of more than 10,000 people, 38 percent had heard of Parler.
“This deal will change the world, and change the way the world thinks about free speech. Ye is making a groundbreaking move into the free speech media space and will never have to fear being removed from social media again. Once again, Ye proves that he is one step ahead of the legacy media narrative. Parlement will be honored to help him achieve his goals,” Parler Technologies CEO George Farmer said in a statement.
The latest development reminds us of the Donald Trump incident and how the former US President started his own social media company Truth Social after being kicked out of various social media platforms for inciting violence. It is also similar to Elon Musk’s acquisition of Twitter; the world’s richest man who thinks Donald Trump shouldn’t have been banished from Twitter wants to acquire Twitter and makes it a platform for “free speech.” This begs the question of if Kanye’s acquisition of Parler is another Donald Trump-Elon Musk move.