Trump wanted ‘Person X’ Parler handle in October

Kushner stopped Trump from signing up for Parler, telling other White House officials that the president’s social media presence should not migrate to the fringe sites. — AFP

US President Donald Trump considered signing onto the Twitter alternative Parler, using the pseudonym “Person X”, before the conservative social media platform was shut down, according to its chief executive officer. Inc’s web services division cut Parler off Sunday, claiming the social network failed to crack down on posts promoting violence. Twitter Inc, Facebook Inc and YouTube all suspended Trump’s accounts following last week’s riot at the US Capitol.

Amazon Web Service knew that Trump planned to join Parler, the site’s CEO John Matze Jr said in a court filing Wednesday, supporting Parler’s request to have a judge order Amazon to reinstate the service.

An AWS representative “was aware since at least Oct 11, 2020, that Trump was considering moving to Parler under the pseudonym ‘Person X’,” Matze said. “She questioned me frequently via text message, phone calls and emails about any knowledge of those plans.”

Matze said he believed Parler was cut off to deny Trump a platform on any large social-media site.

Amazon denied Matze’s claim.

“As we made clear in our public statements and legal filing, suspending Parler had nothing to do with politics,” the company said in an emailed statement. “We suspended Parler because they were unable to effectively identify and remove content that encourages or incites violence.”

Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner stopped an effort to sign the president up on fringe platforms such as Gab and Parler, according to three people familiar with the matter. Trump’s social media director, Dan Scavino, also objected, two of the people said.

Kushner told other White House officials including Trump’s director of personnel, John McEntee, that the president’s social media presence should not migrate to the fringe sites. Trump could have overruled him and moved to the new sites himself, but with Scavino’s discouragement he didn’t, the people said. – Bloomberg

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