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Kanye West will not buy Parler after all

Parler’s parent company said it has “mutually agreed” with embattled musician Ye to end the deal

Kanye West on March 11 at a Los Angeles Lakers home game. (Ashley Landis/AP)

Kanye West will no longer buy right-leaning social app Parler, the company announced Thursday, saying it had “mutually agreed” with the embattled musician to terminate the deal.

West, who legally changed his name to Ye, has lost multiple lucrative deals in recent months — including partnerships with Gap and Adidas after he made a series of antisemitic comments publicly. He had agreed to buy Parler for an undisclosed amount, the company announced in October, which would have put Ye in charge of a platform popular with supporters of former president Donald Trump.

Kanye West plans to buy right-leaning social app Parler, company says

Parlement Technologies, Parler’s parent company, tweeted Thursday that the decision to end the deal “was made in the interest of both parties in mid-November.” In an email, a Parlement spokeswoman said the deal was terminated “mainly due to his recent and well-publicized business difficulties.”

The company said it will “continue to pursue future opportunities for growth and the evolution of the platform for our vibrant community.”

Ye could not be reached for comment.

His reputation and business deals have dramatically deteriorated in the past several months as the once-revered artist posted offensive and antisemitic comments online. He had been restricted by social media companies over the posts, though he has since regained access to his Twitter account.

Despite the backlash, Ye has continued with provocative behavior. On Thursday, he retweeted a clip of his interview with Infowars founder Alex Jones — during their talk, Ye, wearing a mask covering his full face, said “I love Jewish people, but I also love Nazis.”

“I like Hitler,” Ye said in the interview.

Ye dined with Trump and white nationalist Nick Fuentes at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort last month.

Kanye West’s antisemitism cost him Adidas and most of his empire

Ye was initially welcomed back on Twitter in October by the soon-to-be Twitter owner Elon Musk, who said “Welcome back to Twitter, my friend!” On Thursday, Musk replied to one of Ye’s tweets, which declared “Jesus is King.”

“Jesus taught love, kindness and forgiveness,” Musk wrote. “I used to think that turning the other cheek was weak & foolish, but I was the fool for not appreciating its profound wisdom.”

Parlement chief executive George Farmer said the company needed Ye’s “marketing power” in October when the deal was announced. Farmer said Ye was concerned about “Big Tech censorship.”

Trump’s dinner with antisemites provides test of GOP response to extremism

Parler spiked in popularity after the 2020 presidential election, but was knocked offline following the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, after tech companies expressed concerns about its moderation policies. It made its way back online that year, but had lost much of its momentum with users.

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