Ousted Parler CEO says he feels "betrayed" by billionaire investor Rebekah Mercer - 2021-02-08
Mercer helped fund Parler in 2018, and she became its controlling shareholder. Matze says she and her people began getting more operationally involved as the site gained traction around the 2020 presidential election.
Early cracks in the partnership began to form last summer, according to Matze, when there was internal disagreement over how Parler should define "violence" in its terms of service. He claims that he wanted a broader definition than what was ultimately adopted, although he publicly supported the TOS in several subsequent interviews.
But Matze, whose libertarian leanings seemed to interfere with his ability to be a strong CEO, says the internal conflicts intensified around Jan. 6, as Parler's popularity peaked and its problematic posts proliferated.