It appears that Parlers antitrust proceedings against Amazon for blocking its AWS account have not started very well. In an emergency hearing Thursday to see if the judge would order Amazon to turn AWS back on for Parler, the judge declined:
Seattle District Judge Barbara J. Rothstein said during a hearing on Thursday she was unwilling to order Amazon to put Parler back online immediately. Instead, she showed an interest in a more measured approach to deciding whether to order a permanent web service restoration order for Parler.
After speaking to two people who followed the hearing, the judge does not appear to have made an official decision, but said she will do it quickly. Another comment I heard from people listening to the hearing was that Parler’s lawyer didn’t seem to understand some pretty basic concepts about how all of this worked, which wasn’t a good sign for his client. Also, Amazon’s attorney has said that they told Parler that if a real content moderation strategy were put in place, they would allow the site to return to AWS – again due to the fact that they blocked Parler’s account and Not canceling (it did) become a key point in the lawsuit as Parler argues that canceling is against their contract while Amazon says the account was merely suspended, which is different from canceling.
Another point: Parler’s attorney apparently told the judge that Parler could not afford to hear this case pending judgment (in the context of the argument that it would be irreparable not to turn the site back on immediately when asked why there was damage could not be dealt with later by awarding damages). I find this amusing because just last week (which, of course, feels like a century ago), Parler insisted that Section 230 was not needed at all, and CEO John Matze said Parler was big enough to fend off all lawsuits without 230 going through come. At the time, I pointed out to him that his supporters, the Mercer family, are wealthy but not as wealthy.
Still, it’s pretty amazing, in just one week, from “eh, we can handle lawsuits like this if we’re responsible for our users’ contributions” to “um, we can’t afford this lawsuit to keep our website alive” to switch.
Richter not impressed with Parler’s attempt to force Amazon to bring it back online
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