A social platform that considers itself as a “free speech” rival to Twitter is filing a suit against Google after its application was pulled away from the Play Store. Started a short while ago, Gab mentions it is “focused on freedom of speech that may offer an interface for right-wing personalities in the West and nonconformists worldwide” and has become a preferred landing place for conservatives who were knocked out from Twitter.
Gab has accused the Mountain View advertising giant of breaching the Clayton as well as Sherman Antitrust Acts by pulling away its mobile application for hate speech violations from the Play store. Apple—not mentioned in the suit—has also removed the app from its iOS App Store, claiming material on the site defied its terms & conditions. This is the latest burst in a growing combat between right-leaning leaders and technologists against Silicon Valley giants such as Google and Facebook.
In the lawsuit, Gab has alleged that, “Google denies opponents, on a biased basis, access to the App Store, which is a necessary resource or facility.” Andrew Torba, the Chief Executive of Gab, in a statement said, “Google is the largest menace to the free information flow. Gab began to fight against the huge tech firms in the market and their monopolistic demeanor has impelled us to bring the battle to the courtroom.”
In the previous month, the social media platform was banned by Google from the Google Play Store, mentioning that it violated the hate speech policies of Google. Andrew Anglin, the originator of The Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi website, had become Gab’s active user after a series of companies rejected to service his website. Apart from this, Gab also holds other controversial conservative personalities among its users, counting Andrew Auernheimer (weev) and Milo Yiannopoulos.
Google, in a statement, described the claim as “groundless” and said, if necessary, it would vindicate its decision in the courtroom. Google said, “The social networking apps, with the aim to be on the Play Store, require demonstrating a satisfactory moderation level, including for content that fosters violence and promotes hatred against groups of people. This developer is welcomed to appeal the deferral if they have tackled the policy infringements and are acquiescent with our Developer Program Policies.”
Above $1 Million (approximately Rs. 6.4 Crore) is raised since July by Gab in contributions, as per the complaint. The complaint is filed for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in the US District by Gab. The company mentioned that it shifted this month to Pennsylvania.