EXCLUSIVE -- Parler chief executive officer John Matze is "confident" that his social media platform will be back online in the near future after his team was able to launch a static website and recover the company’s data over the weekend in a series of positive developments.
"I’m confident that by the end of the month, we’ll be back up," Matze told Fox News during a telephone interview on Sunday night.
Parler registered its domain with host sharing website Epik last week, following Amazon Web Services' decision to shut Parler down for failure to moderate "egregious content" related to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot. The move was a tiny-yet-important step that helped Matze realize his aggressive timeframe for Parler’s eventual return is realistic.
"Every day it changes wildly, but I feel confident now," Matze said. "We’re making significant progress. When you go into Parler.com it doesn’t go into the void now, it hits a server, and it returns just one piece of information"
Parler had been down since Amazon Web Services cut it off, but now fan of the popular social media platform are at least able to hear from Matze himself.
"Hey is this thing on?" Matze wrote in the first update when the static page was laucnhed. "Now seems like the right time to remind you all — both lovers and haters — why we started this platform. We believe privacy is paramount and free speech essential, especially on social media. Our aim has always been to provide a nonpartisan public square where individuals can enjoy and exercise their rights to both. We will resolve any challenge before us and plan to welcome all of you back soon. We will not let civil discourse perish!"
Matze called being able to post the message a "big milestone" despite appearing to be a simple static website, as the ability to inform the public firsthand is vital to a company that is under constant attack from its critics.
"We’re going to be putting periodic updates there," Matze said "We’re going to try to get an update out every day… so that people can stay up to date with the site."
Parler is suing Amazon for its decision to sever ties, claiming the move is "motivated by political animus" and is both a breach of contract and an antitrust violation. Amazon had nothing to do with Parler resurfacing online, as Matze’s team got the page up independently.
However, Matze did manage to recover Parler’s data from Amazon on Friday, a key step into eventually relaunching – and another major step in the right direction.
"Now we can actually rebuild Parler," Matze said. "It’s critically important."
Matze explained that recent headlines indicating Parler might "never" return that surfaced last week were the result of a lengthy Reuters interview when the then-frustrated CEO answered, "It could be never… we don’t know yet," when asked about a timeframe for the return of the platform. While Matze did suggest the site could be done forever, he says it was simply a pessimistic moment that the mainstream media ran with.
The progress has changed Matze’s tone over the past 72 hours.
The Parler CEO was upbeat and positive on Sunday, eager to explain that his staffers have stood by him throughout the chaos of the past two weeks.
"Despite all of this, we haven’t even had one employee quit," Matze said. "Not one, even with them being harassed and threatened, no one has quit… we’ve got such a strong team, this has just made them believe in us more."
While a nonpartisan company, Parler has become a refuge for supporters of President Trump, and others, who have been either kicked off Facebook and Twitter or have those social networks in protest. Now that Trump has been removed from Twitter and Parler is under a harsh spotlight, Matze hopes to keep Parler’s vendors anonymous going forward so they don’t come under fire from the liberal activists seeking to silence the social media platform.
Fox News’ Lucan Manfredi contributed to this report.