Former employees of the right-wing social media platform Parler are looking to start up a new website after the old one was sold.
The site recently changed hands and temporarily shut down, and former employees and others associated with the platform have been airing their grievances on a Discord server called “Parler Life Raft." The Daily Beast obtained some of those message logs and reported on their findings.
“Parler management are straight up f---ots,” Dennis Harrison, whose LinkedIn profile identifies him as a lead engineer at the company, wrote. “They ruined something good.”
Harrison later posted that he hoped to spin off a new version of the site that would be based heavily on Parler code, but he said the company apparently found out and tried to disrupt his plans.
“They finally revoked my VPN access so I can no longer run bootleg Parler from the Parler laptop they gave me,” Harrison posted. “I’ll take forever to send back.”
Parler was founded with financial backing from right-wing megadonors Robert and Rebekah Mercer and experienced strong growth in the lead-up to the 2020 election, but it got removed from third-party services like Amazon and Apple after it was used to organize the Jan. 6 insurrection, and Elon Musk's takeover of Twitter allowed many exiled extremists back onto that more popular platform.
“Many of the original founders and employees can’t even say the name anymore,” said Parler co-founder and former CEO John Matze in the Discord chat. “But I understand wanting to hold onto the good memories of what we all had. I miss the community.”
Former employees and loyalists lamented the Parler sale to Starboard, which purchase the site last week for an undisclosed amount.
“They don’t have any social media experience,” posted Luke Francke, a Germany-based Parler superfan and beta tester. “They can’t do an account handle change without keeping the old one for backup.”
“Followers gone. Friends gone. People are angry now," he added.