Parler LLC v, Amazon Web Services, No. 2:21-cv-00031-BJR (W.D. Wash). Order denying preliminary injunctive relief entered January 21, 2021.
A federal court in Washington has denied Parler’s request that Amazon Web Services (AWS) be ordered to resume web hosting service to social media platform Parler.
The court found that the standards for preliminary injunctive relief, particularly with respect to a likelihood of success on the merits, had not been met.
First, the court found that Parler had not established that it would prevail on an antitrust claim, as neither an agreement between AWS and Twitter, nor a restraint of trade had been shown. AWS has insisted no contact between AWS and competitor Twitter had occurred.
Second, AWS’s pursuit of lawful remedies, such as might be found in the parties’ agreement, cannot support a claim for tortious interference with business.
Third, Parler was not substantially likely to prevail on its contract claim where Parler was admittedly in breach of its agreement with AWS and suspension or termination was a consequence of a breach under the parties’ agreement.
Counsel admitted at hearing that damages could make Parler whole, making it impossible to perceive that irreparable harm would ensue if an injunction was not issued.
The balance of equities did not favor Parler, as it was admittedly in breach of its contract with AWS.
The court noted that AWS had offered evidence that AWS did not treat Parler and Twitter differently on the same facts, for different services are provided to each company.
Finally, the court noted that no policy supports compelling AWS to provide a platform for speech that might incite violence.