American rapper Kanye West, who now goes by Ye, has reached an agreement to buy the social media platform Parler, which is popular among U.S. conservatives and supporters of former U.S. President Donald Trump. Parler itself announced the news about the acquisition in a press release, noting that the deal is scheduled to close during the fourth quarter of 2022. The value of the deal was not disclosed.
West bought the platform because of the opportunity to freely express himself to the followers of conservative views. The rapper was previously blocked on Instagram and Twitter for making antisemitic remarks. He accused Meta and Twitter of censorship and said that "in a world where conservative opinions are considered to be controversial we have to make sure we have the right to freely express ourselves."
Social network's parent company Parlement Technologies said the deal will "assure Parler a future role in creating an uncancelable ecosystem where all voices are welcome."
The press release also notes that after the acquisition, the company will continue to provide "ongoing technical support" and offer cloud services through a "private cloud and data center infrastructure." Parlement Technologies CEO George Farmer said the deal would "change the world, and change the way the world thinks about free speech" and that users would "never have to fear being removed from social media again."
Parler is a microblogging platform launched in 2018 that positions itself as a free-speech alternative to Twitter. It became widely known in early 2021 when Twitter blocked former U.S. President Donald Trump. After the January riots at the U.S. Capitol, the app was removed from the App Store and Google Play, but was later brought back after the social network agreed to change some of its content moderation policies.