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Apple to Allow Parler to Return to App Store With Approved Content Moderation Updates

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Apple will allow Parler to return to its App Store with approved content moderation updates made since the social media platform was removed in January after the insurrection at the US Capitol.

According to CNN, Apple wrote to Sen. Mike Lee and Rep. Ken Buck to say that Parler is welcome again after it “has proposed updates to its app and the app’s content moderation practices.”

“Apple anticipates that the updated Parler app will become available immediately upon Parler releasing it,” Apple’s senior director for government affairs, Timothy Powderly, said in the letter.

“As a result of those conversations, Parler has proposed updates to its app and the app’s content moderation practices,” Powderly wrote of the decision. “The App Review Team has informed Parler as of April 14th, 2021, that its proposed updated app will be approved for reinstatement to the App Store. Apple anticipates that the updated Parler app will become immediately available upon Parler releasing it.”

Apple told the government officials in the letter that it found posts on Parler that “encouraged violence, denigrated various ethnic groups, races and religions, glorified Nazism, and called for violence.” Since the initial rejection, as well as rejections of other updates, Apple has “engaged in substantial conversations with Parler in an effort to bring the Parler app into compliance with the Guidelines and reinstate it in the App Store,” the company said in the letter.

Apple’s decision to reinstate Parler comes ahead of a Wednesday hearing held by the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Competition Policy, Antitrust and Consumer Rights. Kyle Andeer, Apple’s chief compliance officer, will speak at the hearing, the company said earlier this month.

“Apple’s power over the cost, distribution, and availability of mobile applications on the Apple devices used by millions of consumers raises serious competition issues that are of interest to the subcommittee, consumers, and app developers,” the Subcommittee Senators wrote to Apple CEO Tim Cook ahead of the hearing. “A full and fair examination of these issues before the subcommittee requires Apple’s participation.”

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