Parler’s fall was faster than his rise. Founded in 2018, the website has made a name for itself as a conservative competitor to Twitter and Facebook. It was much smaller than the giants, but it kept growing and evolving into a privacy-focused, sophisticated social media site that put people’s right to freedom of expression first. For months, it attracted big names and gained millions of users, many of whom were tired of traditional social media platforms.

But Parler also quickly became a breeding ground for conspiracy theories about the elections and calls for violence in DC. And one after the other, the technical services dropped their support in the days following the uprising, culminating in Amazon’s decision. When fate became clear, a group of hackers worked to archive the website so that no potentially incriminating or non-incriminating posts were lost.

Users who flocked to the site with the promise of free speech and expression without censorship received a goodbye blow from a researcher who …

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