Parler social network fires chief exec John Matze: report

·2-min read
In its early days, the Parler attracted a crowd of ultraconservative and even extreme-right users - it has since signed up many more traditional Republican voices

Parler has fired the chief executive from the ultraconservative-leaning social network embroiled in controversy stemming from the deadly attack on the US Capitol, Fox News reported Wednesday.

Fox cited a memo sent by John Matze to Parler employees saying the board of directors booted him from his position as top executive on January 29.

"Over the past few months, I've met constant resistance to my product vision, my strong belief in free speech and my view of how the Parler site should be managed," Matze was quoted as saying in the memo.

Nevada-based Parler, which launched in 2018, operates much like Twitter, with profiles to follow and "parleys" instead of tweets.

In its early days, the platform attracted a crowd of ultraconservative and even extreme-right users. It has since signed up many more traditional Republican voices.

Apple suspended all downloads of the Parler app following the attack on the US Capitol, citing postings on the platform that could incite further violence.

Google and Amazon also cut ties with the company.

A federal judge in January rejected a request by Parler that would have forced Amazon's web hosting service to allow it back online.

The tech giant had pulled Parler for incitements to violence on the platform, which was home to many supporters of former president Donald Trump and was actively used ahead of the January 6 siege of the Capitol.

Parler, which calls itself "the free speech social network," has been seeking a new web hosting service as it pursues its case against Amazon.

In a series of posts on Parler before the site went down, Matze accused tech giants of a "war on free speech."

Separately, a lawmaker has asked the FBI to investigate the role Parler played in the Capitol attack as well as ties it may have to Russia.

gc/wat