Former President Donald Trump, who has been banned from major social media platforms, has revealed intentions to build a public business that would launch a long-awaited social platform of his own, claiming to offer a space to “stand up to the tyranny of Big Tech.”
The news statement introducing the platform, TRUTH Social, exudes Trumpian confidence, yet the venture’s long-term viability and many aspects remain unknown.
According to the press announcement, TRUTH Social will have a test launch in November and a larger deployment in 2022. Truthsocial.com is where interested individuals may sign up for the network, although there have been concerns expressed about the site’s initial security.
The Trump Media & Technology Group would be established by merging with Digital World Acquisition Corp., subject regulatory and shareholder approval, according to the announcement. DWAC is a special purpose acquisition business that sells stock with the goal of buying private companies, and according to the press release, the company will spend $293 million in the Trump project.
According to CNBC, DWAC stock prices soared after the news on Thursday. The Miami-based firm was established in December of 2020.
Following a pro-Trump mob’s insurgency at the US Capitol on Jan. 6, Trump was banned from Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, citing a risk of additional violence. Multiple times, Trump’s accounts were reported for disseminating misleading information regarding vote fraud in the 2020 presidential election.
Trump and others have alleged that big internet platforms strive to stifle conservative views, despite the fact that others, such as pundit Ben Shapiro, have risen to prominence as a result of their social media presence.
In March, Trump teased establishing his own social media business in reaction to what he and allies saw as Big Tech repression.
Jason Miller, his former close aide, has now launched his own social media site, GETTR. “Trump has always been a brilliant deal-maker, but we just couldn’t come to terms on a deal,” Miller said in a statement released Wednesday night. Miller complimented Trump on his new company’s debut.
TRUTH Social promises to be a space that “encourages an open, free, and honest global discourse without regard for political ideology.” Despite this, users are prohibited from using the platform to “disparage, tarnish, or otherwise damage, in our judgment, us and/or the Site” according to the site’s terms of service.
When Trump initially broached the notion of creating such a platform in March, NPR’s Domenico Montanaro noted that the initiative would be difficult to succeed in. First, competing with current platforms’ tremendous impact and reach is a huge hurdle – one that previous conservative platforms haven’t been able to overcome. Also, Trump has a history of doomed businesses — and he’s dealing with his own brand issues in the aftermath of his inauguration and the bloodshed on Jan. 6 — so the platform’s reach would be restricted.
Another unanswered concern is what role the site will play if Trump decides to run for president again in 2024, and if it will serve as a large enough megaphone once he loses his immediate Twitter impact.