John Matze Jr.’s social media platform was briefly the new home to conservative supporters of Donald Trump who flocked to it after Twitter banned the president. But Parler went dark Sunday after Apple Inc. and Google removed it from their their app stores and Amazon.com Inc. pulled the plug on its web-hosting service, citing violent content that the e-commerce giant says played into the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
“Many Parler employees are suffering harassment and hostility, fear for their safety and that of their families, and in some cases have fled their home state to escape persecution,” Matze’s lawyer said in Parler’s lawsuit aimed at forcing Amazon Web Services to put the platform back online. Matze had to “go into hiding with his family after receiving death threats and invasive personal security breaches.” The CEO didn’t specify the source of the threats, but his lawyer said in a filing that Matze’s covert action was required because he’s been spotlighted “as the CEO of the company AWS continues to vilify.”
Matze’s move comes after Amazon earlier this week said its employees, too, have been threatened — by Parler users.