Kanye West has announced his decision to purchase Parler. This right-wing social networking app calls itself an “uncancelable free expression platform” and is notorious for its lenient moderation measures.
The action comes just a few weeks after Instagram and Twitter banned him from his account. After the musician made anti-Semitic remarks, both sites took action against the musician.
On Monday morning, Parler parent firm Parlement Technologies, issued a press statement announcing the news. According to the statement, Parlement has reached an “in principle” agreement to sell Parler to Ye and hopes to finalize a “definitive purchase agreement” and conclude the sale later this year. The transaction price was not revealed. Parlement would continue to provide technical support and cloud services to Parler under the terms of the agreement.
Ye’s purchase of Parler is a “bold stand against his recent suppression from Big Tech,” according to Parlement. The musician will utilize his abilities to spearhead the fight to “create a non-cancelable atmosphere,” according to the firm.
“In a society where conservative views are deemed controversial, we must ensure our ability to express ourselves openly,” Ye stated in a news statement.
In an interview with Bloomberg, the artist stated that he was inspired to purchase Parler after being blocked from Instagram and Twitter. According to the site, Ye said his platform will be for “those who the thought police have bullied into coming and voicing their opinion.”
What Does Ye and Parler’s “In Principle” Agreement Mean?
But don’t add Parler to your list of enterprises just yet. Ye says he will purchase Parler doesn’t mean it will happen. According to Elizabeth Sloan, an attorney and partner at Ballard Spahr, Parlement’s news statement made several allusions to an agreement “in principle,” which is essentially a preliminary arrangement. While it signals more than a buying desire, it is not a binding contract, according to her.
“It is the stage at which the parties have negotiated the material provisions of a contract. Ideally, those provisions would serve as the foundation for a formal, written contract,” Sloan explained via email to Gizmodo. “However, an agreement in principle is often not binding.”
In principle, Sloan clarified that an agreement does not have to be in writing. It also does not necessitate the parties to sign a term sheet. However, for these sorts of partnerships, as well as bigger ones, agreements are frequently put in writing and signed, according to the Ballard Spahr lawyer. In this situation, it’s unclear how the preliminary agreement was handled.
The Ballard Spahr lawyer said little is known about the deal, making it impossible to comment on its legal merits. She also stated that the absence of information makes it difficult to predict when the transaction would be completed.
“Whether it is close to being finalized is unknown at this time. Sometimes the agreement [in principle] is highly thorough, indicating that a definitive contract will be issued soon. However, this is not required. In addition, the parties may take their time finalizing a contract,” the lawyer stated.
Parler’s Reaction to Ye’s Purchase Decision
Parlement CEO George Farmer welcomed Ye to the struggle for free expression on Monday. Farmer is married to Candace Owens; a right-wing broadcaster recently photographed with West wearing similar “White Lives Matter” t-shirts.
“This agreement will revolutionize the globe and how people think about free expression. Ye is making a game-changing move into the free speech media area, and you will never have to worry about getting kicked off social media again,” Farmer added. “Ye demonstrates again that he is one step ahead of the legacy media narrative.” Parlement will be proud to assist him in achieving his objectives.”
Furthermore, the press release contained a link to Ye’s Parler profile, which was created on Monday and had 526 followers at the time of publishing. The account has 17,500 followers as of Wednesday.
According to CNN, Parler unintentionally exposed the email addresses of over 300 of its VIP users, including Ivanka Trump and Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik, when it sent them an ecstatic email announcing the partnership. Instead of BCCing the recipients, Parler added them to the CC list.
Instagram and Twitter took action against Ye’s antisemitic comments and account earlier this month after the rapper breached its regulations. Jewish advocacy organizations slammed the artist’s antisemitic remarks, which used tropes such as Jewish power and money, and said his views were harmful and incited hatred toward Jews.
Gizmodo reached out to Parler for comment on Monday morning, asking how much Ye had offered for Parler, but received no response.