Former US President Donald Trump will launch a new social media network -- TRUTH Social -- in a bid to take on the likes of Facebook and Twitter that banned him from their platforms earlier this year.
The Trump platform, which is expected to be rolled out next year, will be created by a new company formed out of a merger of a special acquisition company (SPAC) and Trump Media and Technology Group (TMTG).
“TMTG was founded with a mission to give a voice to all. I'm excited to soon begin sharing my thoughts on TRUTH Social and to fight back against Big Tech,” Trump said at a press release announcing the platform.
The ex-president's version of TRUTH, predictably, sent Twitter into a tizzy. Emilli @Emilli96 tweeted: "It's ironic how Donald Trump is launching a social media site call Truth Social, which will ultimately be filled with lies."
Big Tech vs Trump
Trump said his social media platform would “stand up to the tyranny of Big Tech," which he said silenced opposing voices in the US.
Twitter banned Trump while Facebook suspended his account after his supporters stormed the US Capitol in January. Trump, who used social media more than liberally during his term as president, was banned over concerns that he might incite the mob further.
Social media firms had warned Trump several times prior to the ban to refrain from insulting, inflammatory or false posts.
Last year, Facebook and Twitter deleted Trump’s posts that claimed COVID-19 was “less lethal” than the flu.
Where to get TRUTH Social?
TRUTH Social is available on the Apple App store for pre-order. According to The Guardian, which has reviewed the link on the Apple App store, the platform bears a striking resemblance to the Twitter homepage.
The app will start its beta launch in November, while the nationwide rollout is likely to happen in the first quarter of 2022.
The social media platform will be followed by the launch of a subscription video-on-demand service called TMTG+, featuring “non-woke” entertainment programming, news, podcasts and more, said the press release.
Build-up to Trump's TRUTH
Trump had hinted at building his own platform after Twitter banned him in January. Prior to the ban, Trump had 88.7 million followers and he followed 51 people.
Soon after the suspension of the account, Trump posted from his official @POTUS account, accusing Twitter of trying to silence him.
"Twitter has gone further and further in banning free speech, and tonight, Twitter employees have coordinated with the Democrats and the Radical Left in removing my account from their platform, to silence me," he had said. Twitter later deleted the posts.
Trump Group Corp had trademark rights for the name, Truth Social, which was incorporated in July 2021, according to public filings.
Earlier this year, Trump had launched another online communication tool called ‘From the Desk of Donald J Trump.’ which appeared as a blog. However, it was shut down within a month of its launch.
“We live in a world where the Taliban has a huge presence on Twitter, yet your favourite American president has been silenced,” Trump said during the launch of TRUTH Social. “This is unacceptable.”
Several Republicans in the US also share Trump’s belief that social media silences conservative voices. His son Donald Trump Jr. told Fox News, "Tonight my father signed a definitive merger agreement to form what will ultimately be the Trump Media and Technology Group and TRUTH Social -- a platform for everyone to express their feelings."
"Now Facebook and Twitter will lose even more market share," former Trump aide Jason Miller, who launched social network Gettr earlier this year, said.
According to BBC reporter James Clayton, “By its very nature, the platform (TRUTH Social) is overtly politicised. It is not going to be a talking shop of ideas like Twitter, or a place the whole family is on like Facebook.”
A Twitter user NFTokenbrotha @tokenbrotha tweeted: "Truth Social sounds like some kind of after school club where everyone makes wristbands and virginity pacts.”
(Edited by : Shoma Bhattacharjee)
First Published: IST