What is Epik? Parler social network moves to right-wing web-hosting firm, sues Amazon for cutting off services
Epik, a Washington State-based internet web-hosting safe haven for far-right websites, has given refuge to Parler after it was banned by several major tech companies. Parler also announced that it will sue Amazon, for antitrust violations for scouring the site from the web overnight.
With users as wide-ranging as Texas Senator Ted Cruz and neo-Nazi terror groups, Parler was recently booted from Amazon’s Webhosting service, Google Play, and the Apple Store, after it was accused of hosting content from certain controversial online organizations preceding the violence on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, January 6. Amazon said it axed Parler because it was not confident in its ability to monitor content on its platform promoting or inciting violence.
So, Parler in return is suing Amazon, with an 18-page long suit, filed in US District Court in Seattle. Their claim states: 'AWS's (Amazon Web Services) decision to effectively terminate Parler's account is apparently motivated by political animus. It is also apparently designed to reduce competition in the microblogging services market to the benefit of Twitter.' Parler also accused Amazon of being biased to other platforms, pointing out that Twitter had recently signed a multi-year web-hosting deal with Amazon. Parler was seeking a temporary restraining order blocking Amazon from shutting Parler's account.
The conservative platform's popularity spiked after it was widely speculated that President Donald Trump would use this to reach his followers after being locked out from most mainstream media platforms after Jan 6 siege of the US Capitol.
What is Epik?
After the ban Parler has since shifted its domain name from Amazon's service DreamHost to Epik. Web services company Epik hosted Trump-friendly Gab.com when it was dropped by GoDaddy in 2018 and it had helped 8chan get back online.
First reported by an independent journalist, James Iles in the UK., a simple 'Who is' domain search shows that Parler, a social network that is something of a far-right version of Twitter, is now registered with Epik. According to the article published by Iles, Epik, is promoting itself as “The Swiss Bank of Domains." According to Rob Monster, Epik’s CEO, no one at the company had any previous contact with Parler, but the controversial social network may have chosen Epik as it’s new domain name registrar after reading Epik’s recent letter regarding Parler.
After the website's ban, the posts that were deleted were retrieved by a hacker named, @donk_enby. She claimed that she has found a way to retrieve all data posted by users including messages, images, videos and users’ location data shared during last week’s attack on the Capitol Hill building in Washington, DC.
Parler's CEO John Matze stated that he was doing more than Facebook and Twitter to try and remove violent content from his app. In a statement, Monday morning, January 11, self-declared libertarian Matze said: 'Evaluated objectively, our system worked as well or better than the methods used by our competitors while adhering to our principles.'
As soon as the name 'Epik' made its way to social media, people started talking about it. One Internet user said, "Epik, which hosts the right-wing site Gab, has agreed to host Parler as well now that Amazon has declined to continue to host them. In related news, Epik will now be spelling its name with three Ks." While another one informed, "Not a shocker, a simple Whois search now shows Parler is being hosted by Epik. If you don't know of it, Epik was the webhost savior of Alex Jones, 8chan and other far-right sites booted from their hosts."
Epik, which hosts the right-wing site Gab, has agreed to host Parler as well now that Amazon has declined to continue to host them. In related news, Epik will now be spelling its name with three Ks.— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) January 11, 2021
Not a shocker, a simple Whois search now shows Parler is being hosted by Epik. If you don't know of it, Epik was the webhost savior of Alex Jones, 8chan and other far-right sites booted from their hosts. https://t.co/kpHvlvaGPh— Ben Makuch (@BMakuch) January 11, 2021
Another one wrote: "Parler Finds Refuge With the Far-Right's Favorite Webhost “Epik, already used by Gab and other far-right associated social media apps, just took on Parler.” @BMakuch for @motherboard." Another one questioned: "Is this the epik that is hosting neo nazis from parler? If so, I very much doubt this is a good platform."
Parler Finds Refuge With the Far-Right's Favorite Webhost— Jesse Damiani (@JesseDamiani) January 12, 2021
“Epik, already used by Gab and other far-right associated social media apps, just took on Parler.”
@BMakuch for @motherboard https://t.co/4tEJI9SY4X
Is this the epik that is hosting neo nazis from parler? If so, I very much doubt this is a good platform.— I am unleashed (@AmUnleashed) January 12, 2021