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Parler goes offline temporarily after sale to Starboard

Alternative social media platform Parler has temporarily shut down after its parent company, Parlement Technologies, was sold to digital media firm Starboard this week.

The brief closure will allow Starboard to refresh and relaunch Parler in the future, though it wasn’t clear what form the website will take once it does come back online.

The deal, announced on Friday, was mainly focused on Starboard acquiring the digital media assets of Parlement, with Parler just one element of a broader purchase agreement between the two companies.

Based on comments made by Starboard CEO Ryan Coyne, it appears the relaunched version of Parler will still invite the same audience that proliferated on Parler over the last few years — mostly, conspiracy theorists, extreme-right activists and those who are largely disenfranchised by mainstream social media networks.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal on Friday, Coyne said Starboard will continue to offer a space for “unsupported online communities by building a home for them away from the ad hoc regulatory hand of platforms that hate them.”

Financial terms of the deal between Parlement and Starboard were not disclosed. In January, the former laid off nearly all its workers, weeks after a deal between it and rapper Kanye “Ye” West fell through.

Last year, the financial news outlet Bloomberg reported Parler had around 8 million users.

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).