Parler CEO John Matze says he’s been terminated by the company’s board, just a few weeks after the right-wing social network beloved by MAGA fanatics was booted offline for its lack of moderation. “On January 29, 2021, the Parler board controlled by Rebekah Mercer decided to immediately terminate my position as CEO of Parler. I did not participate in this decision,” Matze was quoted as saying in a memo to staff. He lamented that he’d met “constant resistance” while managing the platform, which came under fire for enabling incendiary, violent rhetoric before and after the deadly Capitol riot. Despite vows from Matze to make a comeback, the network remains offline after being booted by Amazon Web Services. According to The Wall Street Journal, it’s unclear if there will be any efforts to revive Parler with Matze out, though a source said he was the one who created the platform’s original code.
Fox News contributor Dan Bongino, a part owner of Parler, disputed Matze’s version of events in a video released late Wednesday, calling the former CEO’s claim that he fought for free speech “not true.” “We were the ones in fact fighting to get Parler back up” after “some really bad decisions” made within the company, Bongino said, complaining that “we were handling it like gentlemen, and John decided somehow to make this public.”